I almost forgot, well, actually, I did forget. I meant to mention that I have used the Nicholson files for decades and then ran out of my stock of files.
I usually buy files by the box and recently bought some new ones via Home Depot. Read here to see more on what followed. Anyway, needless to say these files failed for the first time and I couldn’t recommend them any more. The I heard about Grobet and tried to order them from a US based company but couldn’t because they didn’t answer the phone or follow up with a call as promised via the answer machine.
This brought me up to date. I received my new file set replete with file roll organizer from Lee valley Veritas who are now stocking them. I took images to show the contrast between the Grobet and the Nicholson. Critical to any understanding of saw files is the fact that they have six faces not three, even though we call them three-square files. The large flat faces are not so much an issue as what happens along the small faces that form the corners.If these edges fracture, and even on good files they can, it results in a bumpy rode along each stroke. When the whole or bulk of the corner goes, the file cannot allow the large flat faces on either side to cut the face and back of the saw teeth in one stroke and so the file is rendered unusable for saw filing. Contrasting the files as shown you can see what happens. Now then, the thing that struck me with the Grobet was the smoothness with which it cut the teeth. I sharpened a Veritas 10” 16-ppi rip tenon saw in under three minutes. Each pass with the Grobet was stunningly smooth as silk, or a knife through butter or a swan on a lake. Beautiful. That used to be how Nicholson’s were for decades.
Also, I really liked the idea of the canvass roll holder. I travel with my files to shows and such for demoing and if I am not careful the plane vibration in the hold or the tool box in the back of my car can allow filing in secret corners where I don’t realize what’s going on. The holder gives great organization and so the rest is up to me.