Hollow grinding on the cheap

I’m not a fan of hollow grinding, strictly on aesthetic grounds, but I’m also lazy and honing the big honking bevel on a 1/4” x 2” plane iron is definitely not my idea of a good use of my time. So, when I got three new irons, it was time to suck it up and spend some time at the grinder. Now, I can do a passable free hand grind a 1/4” to 1/2” wide blade but 2”? Not anytime soon. So, I need a crutch. I have a really nice Baldor grinder, with nice tool rests, I just need something that rides on it and holds the blade square, like a T square. So I made a T square out of 3/16” x 5/8” steel that clamps onto the blade with C clamps.

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Now, I just push the rail of the T square against the grinder tool rest, lower the blade to wheel and slide back and forth. Very little thinking involved, something I’m pretty good at. I don’t grind to the edge so I don’t have to worry about burning that edge and I can be pretty aggressive. The result isn’t pretty (I need some more practice) but free hand honing is soooo much easier. (Ground on left, honed on right).

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