Wood Carving Tools
The variety of wood carving tools that are available is endless, and each one was designed to be used for its own specific purpose. And the most important thing to know about them is that if they aren’t sharp, they’re useless. All aspiring wood carvers need to become proficient in sharpening blade edges. Perfect your sharpening skills with learning how to sharpen and strop a knife. Once you know how to get smooth sharp edges on your knife, learning how to sharpen other cutting tools will be a snap.
Your first purchase should include a sharpening stone and strop. Get some instructions for using the sharpening stone. You’ll have to practice. The strop is for removing burrs and final smoothing of the blade. Any tiny chunk of metal left on the blade edge will gouge your work and increase your frustration. Get your blade smooth before starting your carving.
A beginning wood carver needs a variety of only 4 kinds of wood carving tools:
-- Carving Knives
Do you want to be a whittler or a wood carver? A whittler only needs a pen knife; the carver needs a variety of curved and straight knives with different names for different functions. Your carving knife is your most basic tool. They come in all different shapes and sizes. The best carving knives are the sharp carving knives. A sharp knife is a whole lot safer than a dull knife and is a whole lot easier to use.
-- Wood Chisels
Wooden handled wood chisels are more comfortable to use than plastic handled wood chisels. You can either push them with your hand or hit them with a mallet. Just keep the bevel sharp so it cuts into the wood nice and easy. Don’t try to remove too much wood on one pass. Wood chisels are straight edged, either square or slanted. The bevel can be on only one side or on both.
-- Wood Gouges
Wood gouges are probably used more than any other wood carving tool. There is a good variety available – short and fat or longer and skinnier with extended blades. They are the “U” or “V” shaped tools used for cutting grooves in the wood. The cutting edge is shaped, not flat like a chisel.
Mallets come in various sizes and weights but are usually small little hammers used in chip carving and other kinds of intricate/delicate work. Mallets are indispensible for wood carving.
Once your wood is properly shaped, you’ll need various grades of sandpaper and other finishing tools, but that’s a discussion for another article.
Wood carving is a fun activity. Your finished product can be as small or as large as you want. For larger pieces, you may wish to investigate the power carving tools that are available.
Carvers are woodworkers and sometimes like to build furniture and other kinds of useful wood products. For other woodworking projects check out the professionally designed plans offered by Ted’s Woodworking. He has over 16,000 different woodworking plans to choose from.
Copyright © 2010 LearnWoodworking.org -- All rights reserved. We respect your privacy will not abuse your trust. This site contains compensated affiliate links. Terms of Service: Use of this site constitutes acceptance of the above.