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I love me some sharp tools, and as an increasingly lazy woodworker, I looked high and low for the perfect way to get my dull tools back to work with minimal effort, time and of course, money. I think the Worksharp may just be the perfect fit! Not only is it fast and easy to use, but it offers a tremendous bang for your buck. The only problem is, which model to choose? The WS2000 is about $100, while the WS3000 is twice the price. Is it twice the machine? Can a budget conscious woodworker get by with just the 2000 model?
Well, I own them both, and I can honestly tell you, there are differences. Some of those differences are subtle, some are very big. Let me give you a quick rundown, and then you can decide for yourself which model is best for your shop.
1. The Chisel Port: One of the key features of the Worksharp is that handy-dandy chisel port on the side. You don't need a jig, no fussing with getting the angles right, you just stick the chisel in the slot and sharpen away. It's my favorite feature, and while both models have a chisel port, they are not even close to equal. The WS2000 port is fixed at 25 degrees, while the WS3000 allows you to switch between four different angles from 20 to 35 degrees. This is key because you may want a sharper bevel for paring chisels, a steeper bevel for bench chisels, or a five degree micro bevel. Both systems have an adjustable fence to keep the chisel square, but the WS2000 fence is plastic and a bit flimsy, while the WS3000 has a metal fence with a micro-adjust feature. The WS2000 port accepts blades up to 1 5/8", the WS3000 increases that to a full 2". And while both systems have an abrasive lapping plate built into the port to remove the bur while you sharpen, the WS2000's is a fairly course diamond abrasive, compared to the WS3000's replaceable 400 grit sheets.
2. Edge Vision: This is one of the unique features of the Work Sharp, a slotted wheel that allows you to actually see through the sandpaper and watch the material being removed from the tool edge. It's great for fast, freehand sharpening of turning and carving tools, but the WS2000 is a bit restrictive while the WS3000 gives you twice the space under the disc. This is a big help with turning tools especially.
3. Overheating Protection: Nothing screws up a good blade like overheating, and both WOrk Sharp models have built in protections against bluing those edges. Both include a heat sink beneath the chisel port, using air to cool the blade. And both run at slow speeds, the WS2000 at 1750 RPM and the WS3000 at a super safe 580 RPM.
4. Durability: Both systems are durable, don't get me wrong. But the WS3000 is significantly tougher with a metal housing and a cast metal top, besides the chisel port fence mentioned earlier. The motors are the same, and I see no reason to believe the WS2000 wouldn't last every bit as long as the WS3000, but I do like the metal features.
5. Available Accessories: Out of the box the WS3000 comes with more stuff, including a plate glass disc in addition to the slotted plastic disc. But many of the most popular accessories are available for both systems in one form or another. Both work with the same glass or plastic discs, both have an attachable knife sharpener, both accept the wide blade platform (WorkSharp says they don't, but I tired and they do.). But the WS3000 is compatible with the Tormek/Jet tool sharpening jig bar and a few other third party accessories.
Bottom Line: Both machines are well made, and both do a great job at sharpening all sorts of tools. But the WS3000 is designed for fine woodworking while the WS2000 is target at the contractor and hobbyist. The WS3000's larger capacity, adjustably and accessory selection makes the WS3000 well worth the extra price.
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