Let me thank all of you who took the time to post your thoughts on chisels. I haven’t done anything rash yet but I have taken a hard look at chisels, steel and reviews. I am surprised that so many commented that the Lie-Nielson A2 chisels didn’t take a super sharp edge. After a little research, A2 seems to be tougher but not capable of achieving a fine edge like good old high carbon steel. So it’s a trade-off. Several of you noted that you had newer chisels but kept going back to your vintage tools. I think this hints to the balance of the Narex chisels that I talked about. Mine just seem top-heavy while I’m working. Is this one of the nuances that vintage makers had figured out and the new manufactures have overlooked? Maybe.
The Japanese chisels just seem way to fussy. I’m sure they are superb tools but they require too much work IMHO. I like the idea of Japanese tools but the reality is they are just not for me.
Let me add that Narex chisels are good tools and a very good value and I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend them for someone just starting out or are on a tight budget. I just wish they felt more comfortable in my hand while working, mostly while chopping. But I’ll stick with them for now.
So I went out to the shop this evening and sharpened up my Narex chisels, shaved a little end grain, wiped them lovingly with an oily rag and put them back in the rack. I apologized to them for my wandering eye as I closed the door, but made no promises that it wouldn’t happen again.