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File numbering system?


#1

Here’s my shocking confession – I don’t know what those numbers on
the files mean! I’ve been meaning to look it up… but since I
haven’t done that in the last 12 years, I thought, okay, fine, I’ll
expose my lack of knowledge to Orchid.

What do they mean and where can I find out? Reading catalogs? A
book?

(How do I order files you wonder? I’ve been very lucky to find a
lot of tools second hand, including never used files.)

Elaine Luther
Chicago area, Illinois, USA
Certified PMC Instructor
@E_Luther


#2

Hi Elaine,

Looking at tool catalogs is an excellent idea, you can use them for
teaching your students also. A teacher I had in a junior college
metal class used picture of tools for testing the students on their
knowledge of basic tools. The numbers for files are related to the
fineness of the cut, the higher the number the finer the cut, much
like the sandpaper grits.

Marta


#3

Well, with different sources, you get different answers. On page
175 of the current Stullers tools catalog, there is a chart showing
the different size and teeth per inch chart. It differs from the
one I quoted before. As there are 22 different combinations, I will
not quote them here. The big difference is that depending on the
length and type of file, each number has a different actual teeth
per inch.

The thing that remains consistent though is that the file start at
00, the coarsest and go up through 6, the finest for the Swiss
pattern files.

Stullers has 18 pages of files in their catalog which includes 194
different single file listings. What a set of files that would
make.

Don


#4

Hi Elaine

There are two sets of nomenclature for describing a file’s “grit”

For American pattern files, there are three classes, Bastard,
Second, and Smooth cuts. These are listed from course to fine.

Gorbet, or Swiss Pattern Files use a numbering system which is

	00     14 teeth per inch
	0       51 teeth per inch
	2       79 teeth per inch
	4       117 teeth per inch

While I don’t have an exact conversion from one type to the other,
it would be safe to equate a Bastard to a 00, a Second to a 0, and a
Smooth to a 2. In my years as a machinist and machine repair, I
never saw a 4 grit file until I got into jewelry.

Don


#5
  Gorbet, or Swiss Pattern Files use a numbering system which is 

You mean “Grobet”, I think…

   While I don't have an exact conversion from one type to the
other, it would be safe to equate a Bastard to a 00, a Second to a
0, and a Smooth to a 2.  In my years as a machinist and machine
repair, I never saw a 4 grit file until I got into jewelry. 

And even that isn’t as fine as they go. Number 6 cut files are
considerably finer than #4, and are the finest commonly used in
jewelery work. But I’ve seen, in watchmakers especapement files,
number 8 cuts too. Those files are extremely fine, leaving a
surface not too different from a crocus cloth…

And there is also a german numbering systems too, which doesn’t
equate exactly to the swiss. Possibly a french system too, I think.
Anyone know?

Peter


#6
Here's my shocking confession -- I don't know what those numbers
on the files mean!  I've been meaning to look it up... but 

Hi Elaine, The numbers simply refer to the coarseness of the ‘cut’.
The smaller the number, the coarser the file - so, for general rough
filing of silver, you would use a number 2 cut perhaps and for fine
finishing, a number 8. The range is normally just 0 - 10 with 0 being
rasps and 10 being burnishers. This is, however, just a general
statement of the case and some manufacturers may have their own
system. (you ahve remended me that I have not covered this on my
’filemaking’ page ;o( )

Best wishes,
Ian
Ian W. Wright
Sheffield, UK


#7

Hi Elaine The numbers on the files mean coarseness or fineness and
the same as in metal the larger the number the finer (smaller) the
file. For example a 0 cut is fairly course, a 2 0r 3 is about medium
and 4 is fairly fine.

Hope this helps. If I am unclear please feel free to email me.

Karen Bahr “the Rocklady” (@Rocklady) K.I.S. Creations
May your gems always sparkle.