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Your a top shelf carver Shawn! That is beautiful!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Hand carving tools: fishtail gouges, v-tools, half-round gouges, and knife work are all involved. The "stippling" effect around the actual lettering was done with a small punch. The point was to texture the background so that the letters would stand out more clearly. Once the wood is oiled, the detail pops out even better.
 

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Shawn, I could rack up a fortune in carving tools at Woodcraft. I don't have anywhere near your artistic flair, but this year I'd like to attempt some simple carving. Do you recommend starting with some expensive tools, or just starting with a very few inexpensive tools?

Your work is awesome. The retired Marine who made my stick also lives in Pennsylvania. I invited him to check out this website and he said he would.

Thanks for sharing those incredible pics of your workmanship.

USMCPin.gif
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
CAS,

Unfortunately none of them are cheap; those that are aren't worth the money. You get what you pay for when it comes to carving tools. Since you mentioned Woodcraft, I would suggest pfeil tools - these are my favorites. Here is an intermediate set that would be a good start, and at a moderate price, considering. You would also need to purchase a good knife, a mallet ( or you could make one), and sharpening equipment.

http://www.woodcraft.com/product/2001338/268/pfeil-swiss-made-intermediate-size-carving-tool-set-7-piece.aspx
 

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Thanks Shawn. Yes, I saw that very set, their beginner's set, and a still better and more expensive set, as well as lots of individual tools there. I about choked. But I guess I can either spend it or leave it to my son-in-law! :lol:

The good news / bad news is that Woodcraft's Tulsa location is only 2 1/2 miles from my house. With your recommendation, I'm at least willing to spend that much money, whereas not knowing anything I wouldn't be doing that, or might have picked out things that would have frustrated me into giving up. I really appreciate the feedback!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Glad to help! Actually 139.00 isn't too bad, considering that the tools will last a lifetime and longer if taken care of properly. And they come razor sharp right off the bat.
 

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CAS,

Unfortunately none of them are cheap; those that are aren't worth the money. You get what you pay for when it comes to carving tools. Since you mentioned Woodcraft, I would suggest pfeil tools - these are my favorites. Here is an intermediate set that would be a good start, and at a moderate price, considering. You would also need to purchase a good knife, a mallet ( or you could make one), and sharpening equipment.

http://www.woodcraft.com/product/2001338/268/pfeil-swiss-made-intermediate-size-carving-tool-set-7-piece.aspx
A late Christmas! My quarterly bonus arrived today. Twice any previous bonus check! I guess they think I am aging well. So I won't have to dip into my USMC support fund or my wine and cigar fund to take up woodworking! Friday afternoon I will stop by Woodcraft on the way home. Thank you Shawn!
 

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CAS, hopefully someone at Woodcraft has some knowledge. You really should get them to show you how to properly strop and repair your tools. First rule of carving is learn to keep your tools sharp :)
 

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CAS, hopefully someone at Woodcraft has some knowledge. You really should get them to show you how to properly strop and repair your tools. First rule of carving is learn to keep your tools sharp :)
They are very helpful there. I recently bought a knife sharpener for my KA-BAR. Eventually I may buy a draw knife as several hours of pulling wood off with a KA-BAR makes the old wrists sorer than a thunderstorm will.

I've seen other guides for sharpening other tools at the proper angle but I'll have to ask about the carving set once I've used it some.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I use a draw knife quite often when either stripping sticks or shaping / tapering them. They are very useful, and quite ergonomic.
 

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Shawn,

1) If you have a five or six foot stick to trim down with a draw knife, what do you use to secure one (or both) ends of the stick?

I have seen videos of primitive foot operated devices, but it would take me a long time to make one, even if I had the plans.

Any ideas are appreciated, as you clearly know what you are doing.

2) What size draw knife do you recommend for this purpose? There are lots of options.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Well, I do use a device that is foot operated, and you are right - it does take some time to build. However, this is what I have done in the past, especially if the stick is fairly long: Assuming you have a standard bench vise, and also assuming that it is mounted on the edge of your bench, wrap one end of the stick in cloth or a piece of leather and clamp the end in your vise snugly, but so it can still pivot. If you have a work stool, sit facing the stick at an appropriate distance so that the other end of the stick can be laid either in your lap or between your legs. A heavy leather apron, or something to pad your lap would help here. Now simply start working the stick with the drawknife, pulling toward you. Start out as far as you can comfortably reach, and work closer. You can vise the stick further up as you work the length, and eventually flip it around to do the other end. You can reaaly use any size draw knife; I wouls choose one that you are comfortable using. Just remember to use it with the beverl side DOWN, or facing the wood surface, so that you have the ability to "scoop" a little. If you try cutting with the bevel side up, you will find that the drawknife will just want to dig deeper as you are pulling and you will struggle with it.
 

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Thank you VERY much Shawn. You just saved me from countless lessons learned the hard way.
 

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Fabulous work Shawn! How do you part with your creations? The hardest thing is for me to part with them after I make them, and I don't have any where near the talent you have! I guess it's a good thing I don't depend on my sticks for a living.

Great work!
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Thanks Rad, I appreciate your kind words. I have been doing orders for so long, I have gotten used to sending them off. Admittedly, as my best work only remains as an image in my computer or on a CD, I sometimes wish I had them to look at, but I figure I can alway produce something different, or maybe even better. Believe me, I don't depend on mine for a living either - I wish.

Thanks again!
 
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