How long will a coarse diamond plate last?

  • Advertise with us

« back to Hand Tools forum

Forum topic by jamsomito posted 01-20-2022 03:50 PM 580 views 0 times favorited 5 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View jamsomito's profile


725 posts in 1885 days

01-20-2022 03:50 PM

I’ve FINALLY begun sharpening my tools. My chisels were really bad, and I got a couple used hand planes in good shape, but blades were blunt. I’m using Jonathan Katz-Moses’s Scary Sharp method with the sandpapers he recommends. I do like them, they seem to be working well.

However, since this is the first time I’ve sharpened anything, flattening the back of the chisels and re-doing the primary bezel (they need it, and I can’t match the angle exactly with my jig) seems to be burning 1/3 sheet of 300-grit PER CHISEL. Everything higher goes pretty quick and seems like it will last me a while, but re-establishing flat backs and primary bezels takes a bit of work.

I was considering getting a coarse diamond plate specifically for this work; establishing flat backs and primary bezels for my chisels and hand plane blades. I found one with decent reviews for $50:

Will this diamond plate last me through my 8 items to sharpen? Just not familiar with these at all. Thanks!

5 replies so far

View SMP's profile


5311 posts in 1364 days

#1 posted 01-20-2022 03:59 PM

I have had some DMT diamond plates for a couple of years now and they still work great. Paul Sellers has had some EZ Lap diamond plates longer than that and he sharpens like 10 times a day. So not really sure how long they will last. The only thing to note is they will get a little finer than what they start at.

View splintergroup's profile


6950 posts in 2681 days

#2 posted 01-20-2022 04:21 PM

Nice reflection! You can see those nose hairs before you scrape them away 8^)

Doing the backs is required, but only a one-time task. Definitely begin with something coarser than 300. Paper is cheap and 1/3 sheet is more than reasonable for the first cut. 300 will take a long time to flatten anything with more than slight imperfections.

The diamond plates do last a long time when kept clean and used with only light finger pressure + water. Better quality plates are flat and have consistent grit. Cheaper plates may not be flat and leave odd scratches from errant grits. Either way, diamonds will be quicker than paper.

I have a DMT (blue) plate that has flattened perhaps 50 chisels and 6 or so plane blades. Plenty of other sharpening duties as well and it is still going strong.

Once you get the backs flat (but rough), you can step through the papers. I like to start with 220 at this point and keep at it until all evidence of the previous grits scratches are gone.

You seem to have the knack, the edge is awesome looking!

View sawdust66's profile


89 posts in 208 days

#3 posted 01-20-2022 09:59 PM

I don’t think you need to worry about burning through a diamond plate tuning up 8 chisels. These types of plates should last you years. I use the Paul Sellers method and use the same EZ Lap diamond plates that he suggests and can vouch for them. But they aren’t cheap.

-- Chris, Pennsylvania

View controlfreak's profile


3742 posts in 1060 days

#4 posted 01-21-2022 10:50 AM

PSA sand paper worked okay but as I started ripping & wearing them I realized they were no bargain. The diamond plates I love! I can also abrade in both directions so its twice as fast for me.

View HokieKen's profile


21709 posts in 2597 days

#5 posted 01-21-2022 01:25 PM

As others have said, the diamond plate will last a long time. Especially on high carbon steel tools like chisels.

But, you are going about flattening chisel backs the hard way with 300 grit paper. I would drop back to 120 or even 60 grit to get them flat. The coarse diamond is good for re-shaping edges and will definitely get the backs flat. It’ll just take a little longer.

-- I collect hobbies. There is no sense in limiting yourself (Don W) - - - - - - - - Kenny in SW VA

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics