David Fisher, Bowl Carver

Please welcome guest blogger, Kari Hultman from The Village Carpenter Kari’s attention to detail and humble personality make her blog one of the best on the web! If I did burn out the machine or clog the works with wood dust, I was happier to replace a $35 grinder than a $100 one. For someone starting out with power carving, I would more readily recommend the Arbortech Pro-4 blade. There are a lot of different types of wood providing a wide variety of color and grain textures. As you will see, sharpening your tools correctly for wood carving is absolutely critical for tool control. In addition to having different sections, all carving tools come in different widths.

What you’re left with is a a bowl with a pretty smooth feel all over but just needs a finer grit to finish up with. Note, if the wood seems to be tearing, and your tools are sharp, then you are probably going in the wrong direction. Choose a Pattern: First chose a pattern that you want to carve and transfer it onto a piece of wood. The difference is the way the grain patterns and other natural features look when the bowl is finished. In my experience, the silver Kutzalls carve well but sometimes load up with wood and resin.

A wood carver begins a new carving by selecting a chunk of wood the approximate size and shape of the figure he or she wishes to create or, if the carving is to be large, several pieces of wood may be laminated together to create the required size. The choice will depend on the requirements of carving being done: for example a detailed figure would need a wood with a fine grain and very little figure as strong figure can interfere with ‘reading’ fine detail. As a first step I would contact my local arboriculturist and see if they could do something to help in sourcing green wood suitable for carving. The important thing is to have a long-bent gouge to work the interior of the bowl.

I do this with a bit of 320 grit sandpaper rolled around a small length of dowel of appropriate diameter for the gouges, and a small block of wood for the parting tools. You can use power carving tools to rough out your wood, make intricate cuts, and even sand the carving. After honing the single bevel tools (gouges, parting tools, etc.) the inside surfaces should be straightened up again. For large bowls, mark lines about 1″ apart around the top of the wood – these will be your guide for the initial thickness of the sides during the initial rough carving. There’s an infinite amount of shapes and sizes to raw wood stock suitable for bowls.

There are several types of wood carving: letter, chip, and relief carving; and carving in the round. It is often helpful to tape the pattern to the wood with small pieces of masking tape. Tools that are rusty should have the rust removed from the blades before sharpening. So some luthiers need to use carving gouges and other carving tools and of course these need to be sharpened and honed regularly with use.

In time, you will become more comfortable and will begin to work the blade into the wood in numerous ways, by making deeper edge plunges, scooping, upward strokes, side strokes, pull strokes and some you will make up yourself. The resulting blades combine sharpness and hard density with flexibility, creating incredibly responsive tools capable of absorbing the stresses placed upon them while carving. WEASEL 100 OR 101A – Cuts fast and clean and removes wood faster than any other tool suited to small power units.

Wood chippers can a rubber mallet on their chisel, instead of a wooden one, to reduce noise and prevent too much wear and tear on their chisel’s handle. Removing a lot of wood fast is about technique more than the knife, either knife will remove wood fast and accurately in skilled hands and be slow and inaccurate in unskilled hands. Sarzynick draws on the wood with a marker to help him imagine what shapes to carve.


Also try to work in stages, where the first stage is just getting the very basic shape, the next stage will refine closer to your final vision and continue taking light cuts off the wood until you have achieved the final shape. So be prepared for some sticker shock when shopping around for hand tools for carving from established, name-brand, makers. Carving tools are easiest to use when the blades and smooth, and rust pits don’t make for a smooth working tool.

The bellied blade means that slicing cuts can travel through the wood far more efficiently, in the same way that a slightly rounded cutting edge on a carving gouge can do. I know Chris Pye calls a slicing cut the ‘carver’s cut’ as it is so handy for cutting against grain etc. You’ll find tips and techniques on making bowls using your power carving tools where the emphasis is on the creative process – organized in the following step-by-step process.

There is a vast variety of wood carving tools depending on what type of carving you do and how you want to accomplish it. It can be as simple as owning one wood carving knife! Perfect for carving anytime or anywhere.- Right-handed Carvin’ Jack is the ultimate for portability, whenever or whenever you have time to carve.- Left-handed Carvin’ JackThe use of the knife (right or left) should be chosen by how you carve, not necessarily by if you are left or right handed.

Choose a right-handed knife if you are right handed and carve with the blade towards you. They can cut deep and fast, but for detailed carvings, they don’t offer enough options and typically can only be used to carve on panels or flat pieces of wood. Clean tools also run cooler which extends their life and reduces the load on your power unit. This listing is for 1 set of 12pc PRO wood carving chisel set, a top quality product at an unbelievable price! Make the size slightly larger than the expected end result – you need to leave wood for further shaping. These remove wood faster, which is helpful when creating a background or roughing out a carving.

They remove any fine grit, sand to a brilliant luster and bring out the natural beauty in wood to leave a brilliant protective finish. Fine tune the inside and the outside by gently carving and removing any excess wood. Kutzall disks use thousands of needle-like carbide points instead of blades to abrade the wood surface. Some basic woods can be found at your local hardware store, while more exotic woods can be found at hobby shops, specialty wood stores and on the internet. At Christian Hummul, we strive to get you the best wood carving products possible and keep you carving more. Most chip cutting tools have an optimal running speed of between 10-18,000 RPM.

Our difference may stem from the differing types of carving that we do- If you do mostly spoons then most of the cutting is of pretty large flat arcs where as I am cutting realistic nudes ,horses etc & they require many different radiuses of cuts to be smoothly & cleanly cut. In this first post we will provide you insights on the techniques and tools necessary so that you can get started whittling right away! If the bowl lends itself to a flat top surface, mark a pencil line all the way around the outside close to the top at the level you determine. Wood carving is not something you pick up over night; it requires a lot of patience and practice.

And with many tools you have to have sharpening supplies from day one as they are not supplied sharpened and ready to cut wood. It is preferable to use seasoned wood because it is no longer giving off moisture and will now be at its strongest, hardest and least flexible. Many of us tend to want more though and develop techniques for using different tools. Any wood can be carved but they all have different qualities and characteristics.

Its single detail knife quickly removes wood from convex surfaces, while its fine point is perfect for detailing delicate areas. Use your preferred method for cutting curves to rough out the handle and the outside profile of the bowl. Luthiers generally don’t do too much fancy carving and in fact most flat top and electric guitars are made with no carving at all. With your blade at a shallow angle, cut the wood around the outline of the pattern.

Wearing protective safety clothing and that all instructions for the assembly of accessories to power tools have been faithfully carried out! One of these is the tendency for cutting bits to clog or ‘load up’ due to their working temperature and the often sappy or resinous nature of green wood. Even wrapping your tools carefully in an old towel will help prevent them from bashing against each other, damaging their blades. We offer an assortment of woodworking accessories including Jo Sonja’s paints, sanding tools and bird carving accessories. Relief Carving Unlike carving full sculptures out of wood, relief carving is the process of carving figures into wood.