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Should I buy the DMT DiaFlat?

Posted by SVallieres 
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Should I buy the DMT DiaFlat?
September 03, 2016 07:43AM
Hello guys,

I already have the full set of DMT DiaSharp (the six 8X3 plates) but I plan on getting a full set of waterstones (120 to 8000/5 or 6 stones).

I know that many people use their DMT DiaSharp for flattening waterstones but I wonder how damaging it is and if the DiaFlat (which is more durable according to DMT because of the way it is constructed) is needed.

Thanks in advance for your help!
Re: Should I buy the DMT DiaFlat?
September 03, 2016 11:25AM
The DiaFlat is generally well received, however I have asked many times, even to the people who sell them and proclaim loudly that they are so durable, just how long they last and I get silence. The only real information is the warning not to use them on the more coarse stones (400 grit and below generally).

When I compare them to a piece of tile (which costs $1 at any hardware store, just get a sample), and $10 of loose grit (get alumina/silicon carbide at an autoparts store) combined with using one stone to flatten another, I find it hard to rationalize buying a diamond flattening plate due to the cost. That loose grit will easily do > 100 flattenings and just think what that means to the life of the diamond plate for it to be more cost effective.
Re: Should I buy the DMT DiaFlat?
September 03, 2016 11:33AM
I've used a tile with some 24ish grit SiC (I think...I need to double check) that I got online from ebay for like $15 delivered and it's awesome. Flattened everything very quickly and even refreshed my Norton Economy.

_______________________________________________________________________________________________

Always in search of a good choppa'
Re: Should I buy the DMT DiaFlat?
September 03, 2016 01:48PM
Would a diamond plate be ok for recutting the surface of the stone? It would only work well if the stone was very very close to flat but I think it would work.
Re: Should I buy the DMT DiaFlat?
September 03, 2016 05:23PM
Having used both the DMT DiaFlat and an Atoma 140 for flattening waterstones, I would heavily recommend the Atoma 140 over the DiaFlat if you want to be able to use it to flatten coarse waterstones.

I've used my Atoma 140 to flatten my Sigma Power Select II 240x stone since I bought it and have had no issues whatsoever with the Atoma 140 being damaged by flattening such a coarse stone, however I made the mistake of trying to use my DiaFlat on the same stone once and essentially destroyed the DiaFlat in 30 seconds.

Now, you probably shouldn't use an Atoma 140 on a 240 grit waterstone either, but I certainly wouldn't be concerned about using it on a 400 grit waterstone.

All of that said, Cliff has a good point that a tile and loose grit will be much cheaper unless you have some other niche for the Atoma 140 to fill (I still like it for re-profiling edge bevels).
Re: Should I buy the DMT DiaFlat?
September 03, 2016 07:33PM
Quote
Ryan Nafe
Would a diamond plate be ok for recutting the surface of the stone?.

Yes, they work well for conditioning, but that generally is only needed on stones which are not at all friable (they don't shed abrasive).
Re: Should I buy the DMT DiaFlat?
September 03, 2016 07:33PM
Quote
Steel_Drake
... I made the mistake of trying to use my DiaFlat on the same stone once and essentially destroyed the DiaFlat in 30 seconds.

What exactly happened?
Re: Should I buy the DMT DiaFlat?
September 04, 2016 12:42AM
Quote
CliffStamp

What exactly happened?

One half of the DiaFlat has very little abrasive left on it compared to the other half. This was after mistakenly trying to use it on my SPS-II 240x once, mind you. The Atoma 140 has been used on the SPS-II 240x at least 50 times with no ill effects.
Re: Should I buy the DMT DiaFlat?
September 04, 2016 02:48AM
Quote
Cliff Stamp
The only real information is the warning not to use them on the more coarse stones (400 grit and below generally).

Oh, I didn't know that...


Quote
Cliff Stamp
a piece of tile (which costs $1 at any hardware store, just get a sample), and $10 of loose grit (get alumina/silicon carbide at an autoparts store)

Quote
C Amber
a tile with some 24ish grit SiC

So, it's essentially this equipment but less expensive, right?


Quote
Steel Drake
I've used my Atoma 140 to flatten my Sigma Power Select II 240x stone since I bought it and have had no issues whatsoever with the Atoma 140 being damaged by flattening such a coarse stone, however I made the mistake of trying to use my DiaFlat on the same stone once and essentially destroyed the DiaFlat in 30 seconds.

+

One half of the DiaFlat has very little abrasive left on it compared to the other half. This was after mistakenly trying to use it on my SPS-II 240x once, mind you. The Atoma 140 has been used on the SPS-II 240x at least 50 times with no ill effects.

Wow, there is a huge difference in durability between both. It almost makes the DiaFlat look like crap!
Re: Should I buy the DMT DiaFlat?
September 04, 2016 11:40AM
Yes, it looks the same.

_______________________________________________________________________________________________

Always in search of a good choppa'
Re: Should I buy the DMT DiaFlat?
September 04, 2016 01:23PM
Quote
Steel_Drake
Quote
CliffStamp

What exactly happened?

One half of the DiaFlat has very little abrasive left on it compared to the other half. This was after mistakenly trying to use it on my SPS-II 240x once, mind you. The Atoma 140 has been used on the SPS-II 240x at least 50 times with no ill effects.

That is good to know, have you checked for damage to the plate under magnification at all?
Re: Should I buy the DMT DiaFlat?
September 04, 2016 08:51PM
Nothingman,

Here is an image of a ruler showing that at optical only magnification, my USB microscope will fit approximately 1.9cm into the frame:



Now, here is an image of my DMT XXC DiaSharp (the DiaFlat is, as far as I can tell, simply a 4" x 10" version of the XXC DiaSharp) in one of the least damaged areas:



And now in one of the most severely damaged areas:



And now, by contrast, here is the Atoma 140 (which looks the same on any part of its surface):





Once again, the DMT was used on my SPS-II 240x ONCE, the Atoma 140 has been used on the same waterstone at least 50 times. These images make it pretty obvious why I would recommend the Atoma by miles over the DMT.
Re: Should I buy the DMT DiaFlat?
September 05, 2016 02:06AM
I read somewhere that for flattening with diamond plates, to make the wear to the plates less it should be done under running water, some have tried even submerged completely underwater.

"I am still discussing issues of steels and performance at this stage." -- Cliff Stamp, May his memory be a blessing
"Life is GOOD", -- Stefan_Wolf, May His Memory Be A Blessing
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Re: Should I buy the DMT DiaFlat?
September 05, 2016 11:26AM
Three things lead to early expiration of diamond plates:

  • too much pressure
  • the attempt to grind stones with coarser grid than the diamnond plate
  • too much abraded grain on the diamond plate

The first two lead to complete diamond grain being pulled out of the surface. Too much abrasive residue on the diamond plate abrade the nickel plate and then weakens the binding of the diamonds.

Try not to use the plate dry. Try to use water or lots of water, if you can. If you try to grind extreme hard stones use oil and as little pressure as feasible. If you feel the need to attempt to glass over a coarser stone with a finer diamond plate use oil and extremly light pressure combined with patience.

I use the cheap chinese plates so i learned to treat them well within the first year of experience. I prefer to choose the most useful grid for the purpose, the chinese plates are cheap, so i have six of them in different grids. This helps a lot. Think of a hard stone beeing a lot like a hard knife: you shouldn't try to grind a hard surface with the finest stone alone.
Re: Should I buy the DMT DiaFlat?
September 05, 2016 02:15PM
Ryan,
I agree with the Chinese diamond plates, I have had mine for a year and it works great, for flattening, lapping, and sharpening.

"I am still discussing issues of steels and performance at this stage." -- Cliff Stamp, May his memory be a blessing
"Life is GOOD", -- Stefan_Wolf, May His Memory Be A Blessing
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Re: Should I buy the DMT DiaFlat?
September 05, 2016 08:44PM
Thanks for the info, Steel Drake...just what I needed to muster up the courage to use my Atoma 140 on the SPS 240.
Re: Should I buy the DMT DiaFlat?
September 05, 2016 09:22PM
Quote
Nothingman
Thanks for the info, Steel Drake...just what I needed to muster up the courage to use my Atoma 140 on the SPS 240.

Just try and make sure to use lots of water and low force to minimize chances of any issues.
Re: Should I buy the DMT DiaFlat?
September 11, 2016 11:03AM
Quote
Steel_Drake
Quote
Nothingman
Thanks for the info, Steel Drake...just what I needed to muster up the courage to use my Atoma 140 on the SPS 240.

Just try and make sure to use lots of water and low force to minimize chances of any issues.

Would you expect a similar result with a stone roughly twice as coarse such as the Sigma Power 120?