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How to ...... from LH burnisher to RH burnisher or vice versa.

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As far as I"m aware there are two types of Pivot-files and Burnishers; a Left-hand tilted and Right-hand tilted.


Most people are right-handed and work with their burnisher on the Jacot tool from right to left, they need LH burnisher 3212.

These burnishers are also the most common on the 2nd hand markets.

People like me, left-handed, working on the Jacot-tool from left to right, need a RH burnisher model 3211.



So what to do with a 2nd hand set of LH 3212 burnishers 🤔


Burnishers in general don't come cheap, a new burnisher (3212 or 3211) at CousinsUK cost a whopping £136 exclusive VAT.

If we ignore the rounded edge, the difference in shape between model  3212 and 3211 is how you hold it. Which side of the stick burnisher you are holding ......

If you hold LH model 3212 by its handle, it's a 3212. If you hold model 3212 at the end, at its tip, it become a RH model 3211 🙂

The old LH 3212 burnishers I have (one side is a file, the other side is a burnisher), the handle in the middle is slid over the file / burnisher and hold in place by wooden wedges.

The picture below, the first 4 rows from the top shows a complete stripped file/burnisher. Top row the two end-caps, below the handle, the wooden wedges and the 4th row the file/burnisher.


So if one cuts the burnisher off, like what I've done with a burnisher in the 5th row, and stick what used to be the tip of the burnisher in the handle, you created a RH model 3211 burnisher.

To minimize the cutting heat generated, I used a very thin grinding disk to cut, in stages and with cool-down pauses in between, the hardened file / burnisher.


If the created burnisher is a bit too short for your liking, you can screw the end-cap on the handle as an extension;


A new rounded edge I created on a whetstone.

It's all a matter how you look at it 😁



Edited by Endeavor
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  • Endeavor changed the title to How to ...... from LH burnisher to RH burnisher or vice versa.
4 hours ago, Endeavor said:

Burnishers in general don't come cheap, a new burnisher (3212 or 3211) at CousinsUK cost a whopping £136 exclusive VAT.

So, being a frugal Yorkshireman, I bought a cheap Indian burnisher for about £12


There is no handle, so it functions both right and left handed. 😀

The metal does seem hard enough, and I have refinished the surface on some oiled wet and dry. It does seem to do the job. I haven't used a 'proper' burnisher, so I don't know how it would compare.

So the question is, what would spending and extra £130 on a flat piece of metal gain me ?

What would a £££ burnisher do that this one is not able to ?



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19 minutes ago, mikepilk said:

So, being a frugal Yorkshireman

You don't need to be a Yorkshireman for that 😲

Being an el-cheapo Dutchman, I bought years ago a piece of rectangular 3x6mm HSS steel;


Seems to work very well too 😉

However, now I can choose between the HSS and the burnishers with a tilt 😁



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1 hour ago, mikepilk said:

But is there really much difference between the HSS and the burnishers, or is it just like 'the Emperors new clothes' ?

Both are hardened steel ......... and as said, the HSS seems to do a very nice job. Of course, I'm not a "burnish specialist" ... 🫣

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I made a burnisher from a bit of HSS ,to get the so called teeth on it I just drew it over emery cloth like you would do if you were draw filing , from what I understand because I have never seen one the pivot polishing tool is a very fine file one end and a burnisher the other end.

Dell skin flint in Warwickshire 

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