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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
As a typical man, I love my toys, and whatever hobby I get into I like to buy the best I can afford. However these are straitened times in our house and I can't just go out and buy what I want any more, it's a matter of buying what will suffice. Admittedly I am buying Flexcut carving knives, not the dearest but not the cheapest and I plan to buy Pfeil chisels, but just lately I needed two new power saws.

My first was a scroll saw, a reconditioned Record Power at £74 off Ebay from the factory. All the scroll saw forums say keep away from cheap scroll saws they are a nuisance, but this does exactly what I NEED it to, cut round shapes with a smooth cut. Nothing fancy, just simple stuff which saves me hacking away with the coping saw and getting cheesed off.

Second was a portable table saw, almost solely for ripping timber, or re-sawing it into thinner boards. Today I have resawn lengths of 6"x1 3/8" pine in half, ideal for some comfort crosses I am making for a hospice. Yes the saw has a plastic body, the rip fence perhaps deviates 1mm along its length and the dust extraction system is inadequate when doing enclosed cuts, but it is all capable of being worked around and accommodated. Cost? £99.99 plus £16 for a ripping blade. Bargain. True it's an unheard of brand sold by Screwfix, but it does what I need, when I need it.

Ordinarily I would have spent a total of around £400 -£450 for two saws to do exactly what these do for less than £200, and you know what? I'm dead chuffed with the pair.

The moral? Spend where it's needed, biggest bang for our buck, and that just leaves extra pennies for the stuff that really counts, like Pfeil chisels :)

Cheers, Lol
 

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sensible approach to tools

try looking around car boot sales some good old tools at a resonable price may need tidying up but well worth it.

I have carving knives that are shefield made at a fraction of the price of flexi tools but i rate them. I do love japonese tools like there saw rasp and carving knifes think there extremly good.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I've seen some Sheffield made knives on Ebay and they are good value but being unbranded I was unsure. We have a large car boot near us every Saturday where I can have a rummage and see what's up for grabs.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Dont buy "sets" of carving tools you wont need half of them. Buy shapes & sizes as required
Yeah I'd heard that and was planning to start with a #3 gouge, a 60 degree V tool and play with them, see what they can do or rather what I can do with them and then add from there. I am just bidding on some Ramelson micro carvers because I think they will come in handy for walking stick handles.
 

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I'm not sure of England's market but here in the states you can get pretty good deals on vintage power tools. I've built up a pretty nice shop buying and rebuilding vintage machines. They're far less expensive and better quality than most new tools. It's also a rewarding pastime in it's own right,

Rodney
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Anything vaguely vintage fetches daft money in the UK, or it has been so hammered it's merely a curiosity piece. I always used to buy Bosch but have also had fantastic service, 13 years and counting, from a Makita cordless drill. The scroll saw and table saw are I'm afraid disposable pieces, I hope to get a few years out of them and any more is a bonus, a lot depends upon how much use they get from yours truly :)
 

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I have bought a circular saw and jig saw from Aldi there not the best but have had them for a few year's .there not used every day so there fine and have no complaints about them at all. These where bought at a reduced daft price well under £20.. Also I bought two rotary tools about 5 years ago and run the hell out of them there burnt out now as cant get replacement bush`s then a week later the had been reduced to £6 each so purchased four and still use them. But for that price I don't expect them to last for years , they do get abuse but its so handy having them hanging from the roof fitted with different tools, Wouldn't pay the price of a dremel and have been very satisfied with them, So its worth looking at
 

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Most useful tool for stick making is a bandsaw, ideal for cutting profiles and 3D cutting a block for animal , bird, toppers.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I have bought a circular saw and jig saw from Aldi there not the best but have had them for a few year's .there not used every day so there fine and have no complaints about them at all. These where bought at a reduced daft price well under £20.. Also I bought two rotary tools about 5 years ago and run the hell out of them there burnt out now as cant get replacement bush`s then a week later the had been reduced to £6 each so purchased four and still use them. But for that price I don't expect them to last for years , they do get abuse but its so handy having them hanging from the roof fitted with different tools, Wouldn't pay the price of a dremel and have been very satisfied with them, So its worth looking at
Absolutely nothing wrong with Aldi and Lidl tools, I buy stuff from there as I need and can afford.

@ Gloops - I would love a band saw but at the moment have neither the funds or the room! I needed the ability to re-saw planks up to 6" wide which my £100 table saw allows, the same capability in a band saw would cost a lot more. My next big purchase will probably be a planer thicknesser so I can take advantage of wood that I scrounge up :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I have bought a circular saw and jig saw from Aldi there not the best but have had them for a few year's .there not used every day so there fine and have no complaints about them at all. These where bought at a reduced daft price well under £20.. Also I bought two rotary tools about 5 years ago and run the hell out of them there burnt out now as cant get replacement bush`s then a week later the had been reduced to £6 each so purchased four and still use them. But for that price I don't expect them to last for years , they do get abuse but its so handy having them hanging from the roof fitted with different tools, Wouldn't pay the price of a dremel and have been very satisfied with them, So its worth looking at
I had such a good time carving with my mum's underpowered B&D Wizard (90w) I plumped for one of the Dremel knock offs on Ebay. £21 delivered, comes with flexishaft, hanger etc all in a case, it's 135w and a Ferm badge on the generic Chinese manufacture. Bargain!
 

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i have the dremel 4000 kit with flex shaft and a few old chisels and pocket knives that i use . would love some detail whittling knives , but will get them as and when funds allow , or make my own.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I can recommend Flexcut - they come sharp and hold a good edge. Tyzack tools in London are a good supplier.
 

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you can buy Sheffield made carving knifes at a fraction of flexi cut knifes .i use then all the time I got a set of 4 of ebay for £16 I wouldn't change then for another set of knives

Other than that I would go for Japanese they have a very good reputation for anything that has a edge .

Flexi cut are expensive and overpriced.
 

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i was talking to a guy at british woodcarvers association , and he gets blade blanks of a guy in sheffield that was telling him a lot of blanks are sent over to the states from here to be used in flexcut shafts .
 

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i have the dremel 4000 kit with flex shaft and a few old chisels and pocket knives that i use . would love some detail whittling knives , but will get them as and when funds allow , or make my own.
HI, I make a few of my carving knives - specific shaped and standard type blades. I use Kutzall or similar recprocating saw blades, grind the teeth off and cut out the shape with a cutting blade iin angle grinder or grind down on belt sander,

I also harden and temper them after shaping and before final sharpening - not difficult, but gives abett flexible and edge holding blade.

heat the blade with a gas blow torch until a magnet wont stick to it give it a few secs more and quench in veg oil and to temper pu in oven for 40 min at 400 deg F (gas mark 7) and leave to air cool - done. final sharpen and handle then final honing.

Plenty of info on utube.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I think that what this little bit shows Ratty is that everyone has their favourites, their dislikes and what not. One man's meat etc. I use and recommend what works for me as does everyone else, so unless the majority warns you to stay away from something then you pretty much have to dip your toe in and test the water for yourself.
 

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agreed , its just a case of finding what feels right to you , i like the looks of the flex cut but i cant justify the prices in my head lol. ive always liked handmade tools and the thought of making sticks with tools you made yourself appeals to me too .
 
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