The removal and shaping of tooth structure are essential aspects of
restorative dentistry. Initially this was a different process accomplished entirely by
the use of hand instruments.
The introduction of foot operated engine in 1871 and rotary powered
cutting equipments was one of the truly major advances in the dentistry. Modern
high speed equipments have eliminated the need of many hand instruments for
tooth preparation nevertheless hand cutting instruments remain an essential part
of armamentarium for quality restorative dentistry.
The early hand!operated instruments were with their large heavy handle"
inferior metal alloys in the blades" were cumbersome and aw#ward to use" and
ineffective in many situations. $i#e wise there was no uniformity in manufacturing
and nomenclature of the instruments.
%s the commercial manufacture of hand instrument increased" the various
dentists began to e&press their ideas of tooth preparation. '.(. )lac# among many
contributors to modern dentistry is credited with the acceptable nomenclature and
classification of hand cutting instruments.
The hand cutting instruments are used to split and plane enamel along its
direction of enamel rods or they are used to split the dentin by sculpturing the
internal parts of the cavity.
*otary burs" or diamonds are used for gross reduction" angulation and
refinement" and hand cutting instrument are used to place the intricate details of
the cavity preparation.
Material used / Manufacturing process:
+and cutting instruments are mainly made up of carbon steel and stainless
steel. In addition some instruments are made by carbide inserts to provide more
durable cutting edges.
,arbon steel alloy contain alum and -../ ! 1../ carbon. ,arbon steel is
harder than stainless steel and #nown for its sharpness but disadvantage is that is
susceptible to corrosion when sterili0ed in metallic salt solutions. %lso if dropped
can fracture.
In manufacturing process" blan# steel is bent to the degree of angulation"
needed in the shan# and blade. The edges are then milled to produce cutting edges
and structural design. The steel is then heated to 1.--°1 to 12--°1 and then
quenched to harden the wor#ing edge. 3ot more than 1 to 4 is heated for
hardening purpose because since beyond this dimension the instrument will loose
balance after the heated treatment.
,utting edges are usually tempered to produce additional hardness and
remove some brittle effects. To accomplish this tip is reheated at lower
temperature and quenched in solutions of oil" acid or mercury.
+ard steel is capable of being tempered" and additional treatment
supplements the quality of alloy.
%fter the cutting edges are 5heat tempered6
To gain ma&imum beneficial effects from carbon steel and stainless steel"
manufacturers must submit two heat treatments.
Hardening and Tepering:
+ardening heat treatment hardens the alloy but also ma#es it brittle
especially when the carbon content is more.
Tempering heat treatment relieves strain and increases toughness.
%fter cutting edges are tempered" the shan#s of the instruments are swaged
into handles and pressure welded. )ecause of cost factor and type of a different
metal than that for handle is used for cutting edge.
The handle and shan# are chrome plated to prevent unsightly tarnish and
Thus the cutting edges are only sight that undergo tarnish and corrosion in
sterili0ing solutions.
This corrosion is caused by attac# on the grain boundaries of carbon steel
by sterili0ing solution. 7eriodic sharpening and steam alcohol sterili0ation prevent
the running of cutting edges.
8tainless steel alloy that used to ma#e the hand cutting instruments ,r 9 1.
to 4./" carbon 9 1/ and rest 1e. ,r gives the corrosion resistance but loses #een
edges much more quic#ly than the carbon steel.
,arbide although is hard and wear resistant is brittle.
8tellite another alloy used for manufacturing of the instruments. It consists
of 2./ to :-/ ,o and 1-/ to ;./ ,r and trace elements amounts of tungsten
molybedum and iron. There is high resistance acid of hardness.
'eneral classification of operative instruments<!
16 ,utting instruments< +and
*otary burs
?is#s and other
46 ,ondensing instrument< 7luggers hand
;6 7lastic instruments< 8patulas
7ac#ing instruments
@6 1inishing and polishing instruments<
+and< >range wood stic#s
1inishing strips
.6 Isolation instruments< *ubber dam frames
,lamps" forceps" punch
8aliva ejector
,otton roll holder
26 Miscellaneous instruments< Mouthmirror
7liers" >thers
%ccording to Margou# instruments for the tooth removal can be classified as<!
16 +and cutting instruments
46 *otary instruments an abrasive instruments
;6 Altrasonic instruments
%ccording to 8turdwent hand instruments are<!
16 ,utting instruments
a. =&cavator. =.g. >rdinary hatchet" hoe" angle former" spoon
b. ,hisel. =.g. 8traight" triangle" binangle" ;!angle" @ curved" enamel
hatchet" gingival margin trimers
c. >thers< Bnifes" files" scalers and carvers
46 3on!cutting instruments
%ccording to 8turdevant all hand cutting instruments are e&cavators.
$asic Design of Hand Cutting Instruents:
Most hand instruments regardless of their use can be classified as"
a6 +andle or shaft
b6 8han#
c6 )lade
Handle or S%aft: small" medium or large
It can be smooth" #nurled or serrated. 8erration to increase the friction for
hand gripping. =arlier large handle with large diameters were used which were
grasped in the palm of the hand. These large handles were not always conducive
of the delicate manipulations.
In north %merica most handles are small in diameter ...mm and light 1C@
In =urope the handles are often larger in diameter and tapered.
S%an&: Dhich connects shaft to the blade or wor#ing point. It usually tapers from
the connection with the shaft to where the blade begins. Thus they are smooth rand
and tapered. The shan# has often one or more bents to avoid the instrument having
a tendency to twist in use when a force is applied.
The shan# can be straight" monoangled" binangled and triple angled. The
shan# joins the blade to the handle and is angled to #eep the wor#ing end within
the 4.- to ;.- mm of the long a&is of the handle. This angulation in the shan# is
intended to provide balance so that when force is applied or e&erted on the
instrument" no torque should be produced i.e. instrument is no li#ely to rotate"
decreasing the effectiveness of the blade and causing damage to the tooth
Thus balance allows the concentration of the force on to the blade without
allowing rotation of the instrument in the grasp.
Dhen wor#ing end is not aligned with the handle" the instrument is said to
be out of balance. 8uch an instrument is also useful in tooth preparation. The blade
of these type of instruments is relatively short and is used with the minimal force.
8harpness concentration of he forces at the small area of the edge
producing high stress.
$lade or ri':
)lade is the part of the instrument bearing the wor#ing end or cutting edge.
This is the functional end of the instrument. The blade is used to cleave and
smooth enamel and dentin.
,utting edge forms a @.° with the blade thus having ma&imum bul# and
sharpness on the edge are developed. This angle is maintained during the
3ib is found on condensers and are used to impact and adapt the materials
in the cavity forms. They can be smooth and serrated. %malgam and cohesive fold
are serrated but others are not.
Noenclature of %and cutting instruents:
'.(.)lac# gave the nomenclature of hand cutting instruments similar to
biological classification<!
16 >rder E purpose of instrument 5e&cavator6
46 8uborder ! position and manner of use 5push6
;6 ,lass E form of wor#ing end 5hatchet6
@6 8ubclass E shape C type of shan# 5binagle6
3aming from @ to 1
4 number is variable and non!specific and for practical purposes it is
$lac&s instruent forula:
,utting instruments have a formula describing the dimension of the blade
and angles of the wor#ing ends. They are placed on the handle using a code of ; or
four numbers separated by the dashes or spaces.
There can be three numbered formula and four numbered formula.
number describes the width of the blade in 1C1-
of the millimeter.
number describes the length of blade in millimeter
number describes the blade angle 5The angle between the long a&is of
the blade and long a&is of the handle. It is represented in centigrade. 5/ of ;2-°6
e.g. 8..
If the cutting edges are not at right angle to the long a&is of the blade.
Then the fourth number comes into e&istence which represents the primary
cutting edge angle. 7rimary cutting edge angle is the angle between the long a&is
of the cutting edge and long a&is of the handle. The instrument is so positioned
that the primary cutting edge angle always e&ceeds no..-. it is #ept in 4
e.g. of the ; number instrument< +atchet" chisel" hoe
e.g. of the @ number instrument< %ngle former" gingival margin trimmer
Cutting Instruent $e(els:
Most cutting instruments have on the end of the blade a single bevel that
forms the primary cutting edge. Two additional edges called secondary cutting
edges e&tends from the primary edge for length of the blade.
)ibevelled instrument such as ordinary hatchet have two bevels that form
the cutting edge.
)rinciple of %and cutting instruents:
The main principle of hand cutting instruments is to concentrate the forces
on the very thin cross section of instrument at he cutting edges. Thus thinner the
cross section more pressure that is concentrated and more efficient the instrument
will be.
Direct cutting and lateral cutting instruents:
% direct cutting instrument is one in which the forces applied in the same
plane as that of the blade and handle. It is a single planed instrument. $ateral
cutting instrument is one in which the force is applied at the right angles to the
blade and handle. These instruments have generally curved blades and called
double planed instruments.
The single planed instrument may have two or more curves or angles in
their shan#s" all in the same plane to handle. ?ouble planed instruments have an
angle in the shan# angle to the handle.
8ingle planed instruments can be used for direct and lateral cutting. ?ouble
planed instruments can be used for only lateral cutting.
In order to gain access" many instruments have the shan# bent at one or
more points to the angle the blade relative to the handle. The e&tent of this
arrangement generally depends upon the length of the blade and degree of the
angulation of the shan#.
If the wor#ing point is moved out of the line of the a&is of the handle and if
it is more than ; mm the instrument is said to be out of balance. To solve this
problem in the modern instrument the shan# is angled in such a way that the
wor#ing end is placed within ; mm of the long a&is of the blade. This principle
design is called contrangling.
8hort blades and smaller blade angles require binangle contrangling. $arger
blades and large blade angles require triple angle contrangling.
The length of the blade is determined by the depth of the cavity and blade
angle is determined by the accessibility requirements. It follows that greater blade
angles are required for posterior teeth and incisal portion of pro&imal cavities of
anterior teeth so in addition to balancing contrangling provides better access and
clearer for field of operation.
Rig%t and left instruent: Direct cutting
Instruments can be right or left depending upon the side the bevel is placed.
To determine whether the instrument is right or left. The primary cutting edge is
held downwards poorly away if the bevel is pointing towards the left side than it
left sided instrument" if it is forcing towards the right side it is right sided
In single planed instruments and for direct cutting acts as the non!beveled
side of the blade should be in contact with the wall being shared. 1or lateral
cutting acts always more the instrument scraping action from beveled side to non!
beveled side of the blade.
Single 'e(eled instruents:
8ingle beveled instruments are single planed instruments with cutting edges
perpendicular to the long a&is of the blade. They are all designed as the straight
chisel. If the bevel is placed away from the shaft it distal beveled. If the bevel is
placed towards the shaft then it is mesial beveled. If one observes the inside of the
blade 5or the inside of the angle at the junction of the blade and shan#6 the primary
bevel is not visible" the instrument has a distal bevel.
,onversely if the bevel is seen than it is the mesial bevel or reverse bevel.
$i'e(eled instruent: >rdinary hatched and straight chisel can be bibeveled.
The blade is equally beveled on both sides" and they cut by pushing them in the
direction of the long a&es of the blade.
Triple 'e(eled instruents: )eveling the blade laterally together with the end
forms the three distinct cutting edges.
*uadri+'e(eled instruents:
mainly occurs in the double planed instruments where the blade is beveled
at all the peripheries.
)us% and pull otion:
If the bevel is on the side of the blade towards the shaft they are called
mesially beveled. If these type of instruments has no angle in the shan# or angle
less than 14° or less" they are used in push or direct cutting and scraping motion
5beveled to non!beveled side6.
If the bevel is on the side of the blade away from the shaft they are called
distally beveled. If these types of instruments has angle more than 14° on the
shan# they are used in pull motion.
Single+ended and dou'le ended instruents:
Most modern instruments are double ended incorporating the right and left
or mesial and distal form of the instrument of the same handle. 8ingle planed
instruments with no angle in the shan# has potential of fine cutting movements.
(ertical 5parallel to long a&is of blade6" right" left push and pull.
1or single planed right and left instruments vertical push and pull" right or
1or mesial and distal beveled instrument E vertical" right" left" push or pull.
T%e %and cutting instruents:
16 =&cavators<! =&cavators are designed for the e&cavation and removal of carious
dentin and shaping the internal parts of the cavity.
a6 >rdinary +atchet<
• ,utting edges are directed in the same plane to the long a&is of the handle.
• ,utting edges are perpendicular to the long a&is of the blade.
• ; number formula
• )ibevelled
• 7aired right and left. The right of the pair is identified in the pair by
indented ring on the shaft.
• )ibeveled< Two bevels of the equal length placing the cutting edge in the
! These are single ended
! Ases< 7reparing the retentive areas and sharpening the internal line and
point angles in the direct gold restorations.
• )ibeveled their blade length is small and used in the anterior teeth.
• They are used in the chopping motion to create incisal dentin retention in
class III cavity form. They can share the wall by vertical action and may be
used laterally with scraping motion.
b6 +oe<! The primary cutting edge of the blade is perpendicular to the long a&is of
the handle.
?ifference between the hoe and chisel<! +oes blade has an angle greater than the
14.° centirgrates to the long a&is of the handle. ,hisel blade has an angle lesser
than 14.. centigrade to the long a&is of the handle.
Ases< This type of instrument is mainly used for the planning the walls of the
cavity and refining and sharpening of the cavity internal line angles. Ased in class
III and ( direct gold restorations.
+oes are doubled planed instruments. +oe is used with pull motion. ,hisel
is used with push motion. 8ome sets of the hoe contains larger and heavier blades
with the shan#s contraangled. They are intended for use for enamel on posterior
;6 %ngle former<!
The primary cutting edge is at an angle other than :-° to the long a&is of
the blade. The angle of the cutting edge to the blade a&is of the angle former is
usually 8- to 8.°. This creates a pointed and linear cutting edge.
)eing single planed instruments with right and left beveling they can have
three cutting potentials E vertical" push and pull.
• they can be large" medium and small angle former
• It is modified chisel and be described as the combination of the chisel and
gingival margin trimmers.
• *ight and left according to acute angle being directed.
• %ngle former used to accentuate line angle and point angle of internal line
angle form of the cavity for cohesive gold restoration.
• %ngle former has primary cutting edges but can also have secondary
cutting edges. )eveling of the blade laterally together with the end bevel
form three distinct cutting edges. This is helpful in additional lateral cutting
quality of the instrument.
@6 8poon e&cavator<!
The spoon e&cavator is a double planed instrument 5curved blade6 that is a
modified hatchet. Anli#e the slight cutting edges of the hatchet the spoon
e&cavator has rounded cutting edges or cutting edges at the end of the blade is in
the form of semicircle. This gives instrument on outer conve&ity and inner
concavity that ma#es it somewhat loo# li#e spoon.
It can be left sided or right sided.
This shape of cutting tip to some degree" the action of the instrument in
spooning and scooping of the carious material.
$i#e double planed instrument for lateral scraping. It is always a paired
instrument with curved blade directed right.
Ased for the caries removal and amalgam cavity.
The cutting edges are circular than it is discoid and claw li#e than it is
The shan# binangle and triple angle to facilitate accessibility<!
?iscoid<! The cutting edges are a periphery and are used with right and left cutting
,leoids<! $ateral scraping movements and used in areas which are difficult to
% chisel is an e&cavator primarily used for planning and cleaving enamel
and dentin. It is characteri0ed by blade that terminates in a cutting edge formed by
one sided bevel. The cutting edge of the chisel as at perpendicular to the long a&is
of the handle of the instrument.
?ifferent types of chisel<!
8traight chisel<! have a straight blade in line with shan# and handle. They are
single planed instruments with five possible cutting movements.
Monoangle chisel<! 8imilar to straight chisel e&cept the blade is placed at same
angle to the shaft. It may be mesially or distally beveled.
)inangle chisel<! has two angles in the shan#. It is also mesially and distally
beveled. Ased to clear the undermined enamel.
Triple angle chisel<! Three angle in the shan# and usually often used to plane the
pulpal floor.
The monoangle" binangle and triple angle chisels are single planed
instruments. %ll possible cutting movements are vertical" right and left. The
mesially beveled chisels can cut in push movement and distally beveled chisel can
cut in pull movement.
,eldstaldt c%isel:
Deldstaldt chisel is a chisel with a slight vertical curvature in the shan#. It
is beveled on one side. If the bevel is towards the curvature than it is me&ially
beveled if the bevel is away from the curvature then it is distally beveled.
Ased for cleaving of the undermined enamel and shaping of enamel walls.
8ingle planed instruments" three cutting motions E vertical" right and left.
Mesial beveled can be use for push motion and distal beveled can be used for pull
8traight chisel available in si0es 1.- and 4.- nm.
)inangle chisel available in these widths 1.-" 1.. and 4.- mm.
Deldstaldt chisel available in these widths 1.-" 1.. and 4.- mm.
Enael Hatc%et:
The cutting edge is in the same plane to the long a&is of the handle. 7aired
right or left sided. 8imilar to design of one ordinary hatchet e&cept the blade is
larger" heavier and single beveled. Ased for cutting enamel.
Gingi(al Marginal Trier:
'ingival marginal trimmer is an modified hatchet. The two distinct
modifications of the basic design of the hatchet are seen.
16 In the hatchet cutting edge is at the same plane to the long a&is of the blade
but in gingival margin trimmer the cutting edge is at angle other than :-°.
46 The hatchet is single planed instrument as it has a straight blade. Dhereas
the gingival margin trimmer has a curved blade thus it is double planed
;6 The curved blade accentuates the lateral scrapping ability of the instrument.
$i#e hatchet 'MT is also paired right and left" but it is also paired
according to the bevels mesial and distal.
Thus 'MTs are two paired instruments and double ended instruments" one
instrument mesial 'MT 5with left and right cutting ends6 and distal 'MT 5with
left and right cutting ends6.
The cutting edge of one pain ma#ing an angle with the edge of the blade
furthest from the handle. These are distal 'MT. The cutting edge of the other pan
ma#ing an acute angle with the edge of the blade nearer to the handle. This is
mesial 'MT.
-. Nu'ered instruent:+
Dhen the 4
number in the formula is :- to 1--" the instrument is used in
the distal gingival margin. Dhen the 4
number on the formula is 8. to 7. the
instrument is used in the mesial gingival margin 5formula of mesial 'MT6.
The 1-- and 7. pair are for inlay or onlay to prepare steep gingival bevels
:- and 8. pairs for amalgam preparation with gingival enamel bevel that decline
gingivally only slightly.
Ased to give the bevel on the gingival enamel margins of inlay and
amalgam restorations.
#ffset Hatc%ets:
The offset hatchets are the set of the regular hatchets with the whole blade
rotated quarter of a turn forward or bac#ward around its long a&is. They are single
planed instrument. The rotation and angulation provides accessibility the difficult
• Fuenching
• +eat treatment
• %ge hardening
• Dor# hardening
• Temperature
In equilibrium phase diagram<
The temperature at which the first solid begins to form is called the
temperature. The temperature at which the last liquid is solidus temperature.
+eat treatment is the thermal processing of an alloy for a length of time
above room temperature put below the solidus temperature.
Fuenching<! This is the rapid cooling from an elevated temperature to room
temperature or below. This is done for basically two reasons.
16 To preserve at room temperature a phase ordinarily stable only at elevated
46 To rapidly terminate a process that only occurs at elevated temperatures.
Instruent Grasp:
There are four grasps for hand cutting instruments.
a6 Modified 7en 'rasp<! The grasp that permits the greatest delicacy of tough is
modified pen grasp. 7ads of thumb" inde& and middle finger contact the
instrument" while the tip of ring finger 5or tips of ring and little finger6 is
placed on a nearby tooth surface of the same arch as a rest. The pad of middle
finger is placed near the topside of the instrument. The inde& finger tip is
positioned well above the middle finger on same side of the handle. The pad of
the thumb is placed midway between the inde& and middle finger on the
opposite side of handle. This creates a triangle of forces or tripoding effect that
enhances control because it counteracts the tendency of instrument to turn
uncontrollably between fingers.
b6 Inverted pen grasp<! The finger positions of the inverted pen grasp are same as
modified pen grasp. +owever the hand is rotated so that palm faces towards the
operator. This grasp is used mostly for tooth preparation utili0ing lingual
approach on anterior teeth.
c6 7alm and thumb grasp<! The palm and thumb grasp is similar to that used for
holding a #nife. The handle placed in the palm of the hand and grasped by all
the fingers" while the thumb is free of instrument and the rest is provided by
supporting the tip of the thumb on a nearby tooth of the same arch or on a firm
stable structure. %ppropriately used in holding hand piece for cutting incisal
retention in class III preparation.
d6 Modified palm and thumb grasp<! It may be used when it is feasible to rest the
thumb on the tooth being prepared or adjacent tooth. The handle of instrument
is held by all four fingers whose pads press the handle against the distal area of
the palm as well as the pad of first joint of the thumb.
e6 7alm!Thrust grasp<! The end of the large handle is grasped in the center of
palm" the shan# being held between balls of thumb and first and second finger.
3o rest is utili0ed. % powerful thrust is thus obtained such as needed in
condensing non!cohesive gold foil.
% proper instrument grasp must include a firm rest to steady the hand
cutting procedures. The closer the rest area to operating site more reliable it is.
Intra oral finger rest can be divided into<!
a6 ,onventional<! =stablished on tooth adjacent to wor#ing area.
b6 ,ross arch<! =stablished on tooth of other side of same arch.
c6 >pposite arch<! =stablished on opposite arch.
d6 1inger on finger<! =stablished by finger or thumb of non!operating hand
5indirect rest6.
Guards: 'uards are hand instrument or other items such as interpro&imal wedges"
used to protect soft tissues from contact with sharp cutting or abrasive instruments.
8harp instruments can cut more precisely and quic#ly than dull instruments.
Instruments with dull cutting edges causes more pain" prolonged operating time"
are less controllable and reduce quality and precision in tooth preparation.
*esharpening requires less time and is very rewarding.
)rinciples of S%arpening:
16 8harpen instrument only after they have been cleaned and sterili0ed.
46 =stablish the proper bevel angle 5usually @.°6 and the desired angle of cutting
edge to the blade before placing the instrument against the stone and maintain
these angles while sharpening.
;6 Ase of light stro#e or pressure against the stone to minimi0e frictional heat.
@6 Ase of rest or guide whenever possible.
.6 *emove as little metal from blade as possible.
26 $ightly hone the unbeveled side of blade after sharpening to remove the fine
bur that may be created.
76 %fter sharpening" resterili0e the instrument along with other items on the
instrument tray setup.
86 Beep the sharpening stones clean and free of metal cuttings.
T/pes of S%arpener:
There are three types of sharpeners.
a6 8tationary sharpening stones
b6 Mechanical sharpeners
c6 +and piece sharpening stone
a6 8tationary 8harpening 8tone<!
The most frequently used sharpening equipment consist of a bloc# or stic#
of abrasive material called GstoneH. The stone is supported on a firm surface and
instrument is oriented and held by hand while being stro#ed against the stone
8tationary stones are also called G>ilstonesH because of common practice of
applying a coat of oil to them as an aid to sharpening process.
8tationary stones available in fine" medium and coarse grit. 1ine grit is
suitable for final sharpening. ,oarse and medium grit used for initial reshaping of
badly damaged instruments.
8tationary stones can be obtained in various shapes including flat" grooved"
cylindrical and tapered. 1lat are preferred for straight cutting edges. >ther shapes
are useful in sharpening curved edges.
The properties of the stone depends on the volume and si0e of pores as well
as composition and si0e of abrasive. 1our type of stones are available for
sharpening instruments.
16 %r#ansas 8tone<! It is a naturally occurring mineral containing microcrystalline
quart0. It is semi!translucent" white" gray in colour and hard enough to sharpen
steel but not carbide instruments. %r#ansas stone are available in hard and soft
varieties. These stone should be lubricated with light machine oil before being
used. This assists in fineness of sharpening" prevent clogging of stone pores
and avoid the creation of heat. Dhen the stone appears to be dirty it should be
wiped with woolen cloth and when e&tremely dirty wiped with cloth soa#ed in
46 8ilicon ,arbide 58i,6<! It is widely used as an industrial abrasive. It is chard
enough to cut steel efficiently but not hard enough to sharpen carbon steel. 8i,
is available in many shapes in coarse and medium grits but not fine grits. 8i,
are normally of blac# colour often greenish blac#. These stones are moderately
porous and require lubrication with light oil to prevent clogging.
;6 %luminium >&ide<! %luminium o&ide stones commonly are produced in
various te&tures from different particle si0es of abrasive. ,oarse and medium
grit stones appear brownish. 1ine grit stones are usually white have superior
properties and are less porous so require less lubrication. =ither water or light
oil is adequate as lubricant.
@6 ?iamond<! It is the hardest available abrasive and is most effective for cutting
and shaping hard materials. It is the only material routinely capable of
sharpening carbide as well as steel instruments. ?iamond hones are small
bloc#s of metal with fine diamond particles impregnated in the surface. The
diamonds are held in place by an electroplated layer of corrosion resistant
metal. These hones are non!porous but the use of lubricant will e&tend the life
of hones.
Stationar/ Stone Tec%ni0ue:+ The stationary sharpening stone should be at least
4 inches wide and . inches long. It should be medium grit for hand cutting
instrument. )efore the stone is used" a thin film of light oil should be placed on
wor#ing surface.
8everal fundamental rules apply using stationary stone<!
• $ay the stone on a flat surface and do not tilt while sharpening
• 'rasp the instrument firmly
• To ensure stability during sharpening stro#es" use the ring and little fingers as a
• Ase a light stro#e to prevent the creation of heat and scratching of the stone.
• Ase different areas of stoneHs surface while sharpening because this helps to
prevent the formation of grooves on stone that impair efficiency and accuracy
of sharpening procedure.
• Dhen sharpening chisel" hatchets or hoes on the stationary stone" grasp the
instrument with a modified pen grasp" place the blade perpendicular to the
stone and then tilt the instrument to establish the correct bevel. The motivating
force should be from shoulder so that relationship of hand to plane of stone is
not changed during the stro#e.
• The procedure for sharpening angle former is essentially the same as that used
for chisel" hatchet" hoes e&cept allowance must be made for angle f cutting
• 'ingival margin trimmer require more orientation of cutting edge to the stone
before sharpening than regular hatchet. 7roper bevel angle and cutting edge
angle should be maintained. It may be e&pedient to use palm and thumb grasp
when sharpening a trimmer with :. or 1-- centigrade cutting edge angle.
• 8pan e&cavator and discoids are most difficult instruments to sharpen on a flat
stone. >nly the rounded outside surface of spoon can be honed on a flat stone
and this involves the rotatory movement accompanied by pull stro#e to main
curvature of the edge. The spoon is placed on the far end of the stone and held
to that the handle is pointing towards the operator. %s the instrument is pulled
along the stone towards the operator" the handle is rotated gradually away from
the operator at the end of the stro#e. The instrument is pic#ed up and placed at
the far end of stone and the motion is repeated until the edge is honed. The
stone is either may be placed on a flat surface or held in the hand for this
b6 Mechanical 8harpeners<!
The treatment honing machine is an e&ample of a mechanical sharpener.
)asically this instrument moves a hone in a reciprocating motion at a slow speed"
while the instrument is held at appropriate angulation and supported by a rest.
Interchangeable %l4>; hones of different shapes and coarseness are available to
accommodate the various instrument si0es" shapes and degree of dullness.
*estoration of cutting edge is accomplished more easily and in less time than by
other sharpening methods. The mechanical sharpener is easily mastered with a
little practice and is a quic# method of sharpening hand instruments.
c6 +andpiece 8harpening 8tones<!
Mounted 8i, and %l4>; stones for use with both straight and angle hand
pieces are available in various si0es and shapes. Those intended for use in straight!
sided silhouettes" are more useful for sharpening hand instruments than are the
smaller points intended for intraoral use in angle hand pieces. These stones also
may produce somewhat inconsistent results because of speed variables and usual
lac# of a rest or guide for the instruments.
Methods of sterili0ation of hand cutting instrument are sporicidal cold
disinfection" boiling water" steam under pressure 5%utoclave6" chemical vapour
and hot air 5dry heat6.
8terili0ation of carbon steel method by first three methods causes
discolouration" rust and corrosion. These problems can be minimi0ed by<!
16 To electroplate the instrument
46 7rotection is by use of rust inhibitors" which are soluble al#aline
;6 Minimi0ing the effect of moisture is to remove the instrument promptly at
the end of the recommended sterili0ing period" dry them thoroughly.
)oiling water or autoclave methods of sterili0ation do not produce
discolouration" rust and corrosion. 7rolonged immersion in cold disinfectant can
cause rust. ?ry heat sterili0ation do not rust and corrode carbon steel instruments"
but the high heat may reduce the hardness of alloy" which may reduce the ability
of instrument to retain a sharp cutting edge.
%s high!speed rotary cutting instruments have been improved and their use
has increased" the use of hand cutting instruments and the need for resharpening
has decreased. 3evertheless" hand cutting instrument remain an essential part of
armamentarium for quality restorative dentistry.