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Hey y’all, first time poster, and very new member! 

I’m a young blacksmith in training and have received all of my knowledge from 1 book and this website! Haha 

anyway, so I decided to make a knife. First project ever. Used a railroad spike (doesn’t have enough carbon to harden into a serious knife yadda yadda) but, when I finished my rough shape and hammered my bevel I went to go ahead and finish the bevel shape with an angle grinder and a 36 grit floppy disk. Turns out, when someone who has only ground metal enough times to count on one hand tries to make a perfectly symmetrical grind on two sides of a single edged knife, it’s basically impossible to make my lines nice and straight and even.

 

With allllll of that being said, here is my question. 

There is a fella in town selling this sander on craigslist nice and cheap. Can I get by and learn with this thing? Or is it just going to be too slow of a process to learn on?

thanks y’all, any help is greatly appreciated!

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Welcome to the forum! Personally I would rather use a good angle grinder and some hi-qual files. with those to things you can get some decent bevels, you just need to learn the technique. besides, they are both tools every blacksmith needs to learn to be proficient with. not to say that grinder would not be handy for some stuff, but i would not put 130 quid into it. i see those around for 25 dollars fairly often. if you see one that cheap it couldn't hurt to pick it up,  but 130 could be better spent IMHO.

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It's better than nothing but only by a little.  Way (say that louder!) underpowered. Far less rigid a frame than it should have to work well.  

If it was super cheap, I'd pick one up because there are things those are handy for--like a quick deburr on the end of cut material.  If it was more than about a 20-25 buck offering, I'd pass and keep searching...but again, if you have nothing now, it is better than that nothing in terms of a beginning. 

You'll outgrow any knife work that can do VERY quickly if you forge more than every couple of months.  And for knife work it's lack of power WILL be frustrating.

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That belt sander will work for a lot of light work. I've used one for years. That being said the price is out of the ballpark so to speak. It's a Harbor Freight belt sander that sell new for $54.99 the Craigslist seller is looking to rip someone off if his price is anywhere near the Sears shown.

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Should have just posted his ad, but he only wants $50 and that’s a price I don’t think I would mind to put down for just some simple and small work! Thank you all for your input! You guys are great!

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If you are ok with $50 for that 1x30", spend a couple bucks more and get it from a retailer like HarborFreight.  It's $54 there.  But if it breaks you can at least return/exchange.  Will the Craigslist guy do refunds/returns/exchanges?

 

You do see alot of re-sale guys on Craigslist and Ebay.  They will post Harbor Frieght items for higher prices, then drop ship from Harbor Freight.  They don't even have to carry an inventory.  They take a sale/order and then order from HF and have item shipped to buyer and pocket the mark up as profit.

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If you buy from Harbor Freight, spend a couple of extra bucks on the extended warranty.

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I have one just like it, its far from perfect for grinding metal, but works extremely well on wood for handles. the speed on those runs pretty fast too, and eats thin 1" belts quickly to where they produce lots of heat and you have to cool off the metal quite often.  

 

I agree with above, buy new for the same price and have at least some sense of warranty. 

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