How to Sharpen and Restore Woodworking Hand Tools

By Joshua Farnsworth

Below you will see various tutorials by skilled craftsmen, on sharpening and restoring / refurbishing woodworking hand tools. My wife loves to say, “hun, I think you love restoring hand tools almost as much as woodworking!” I think she’s right. There’s something magical about taking a well-built antique woodworking hand tool and bringing it back to working order. Removing the rust, tuning up the parts, and sharpening the blade gives a feeling of satisfaction; especially when seeing the finished result. I get a feeling of a connection with the past, with my ancestors, with a time when things were made and done with a sense of pride and quality.



You’ll soon realize that buying, refurbishing, and collecting heirloom hand tools can become addictive. Over time I’ll add more and more video tutorials to this page on refurbishing different types of traditional woodworking hand tools. So keep checking back!

How to Sharpen Hand Plane Irons / Blades and How to Sharpen Wood Chisels

Deneb Puchalski shares a fantastic tutorial on how the Lie-Nielsen company recommends that you sharpen plane irons:


Here’s a great video on free hand sharpening of various tools:

[/fusion_youtube] Here are Two great videos from Highland Woodworking and Lie-Nielsen on grinding and honing chisels:


How to Sharpen a Handsaw:

Englishman Paul Sellers shares an in-depth tutorial on handsaw types and sharpening techniques:


How to Sharpening a Card Scraper:

I filmed Elia Bizzarri teaching the simplest method that I’ve seen, on how to sharpen a card scraper:


How to Refurbishing Hand Planes:

This is a really long video about hand plane restoration, but it’s very detailed:


How to Refurbish Chisels:

VIDEO: This video shows how to refurbish old flea-market chisels to beautiful working condition:


How to Refurbish and Restore Handsaws:

Here’s a great tutorial on how to refurbish and restore an antique handsaw:



Shortcut to 10 steps: