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Whittling.

Discussion in 'General Chat' started by Big Pun, Jul 25, 2012.

  1. Big Pun

    Big Pun Senior member

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    Is there any outdoorsmen/hobbyists on this forum into wood carving? Share your advice, pics of your work, tools (ll) etc.

    I just got into this hobby, very relaxing. I'm using a Buck 112 that I found on the street (and was hopefully not used in a murder). It holds a nice sharp edge and I like the wood handle, but it's a little big for detailing, anyone have any recommendations for quality small blades?

    My first project is a wood chain, hopefully will turn out like this:
    [​IMG]

    But so far looks a bit shit. I'm using a pine wood derby car model, the store didn't have any basswood, lol. I will upload pics when I find my camera.
     
  2. Big Pun

    Big Pun Senior member

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    Bam. I think this one is a dud, gonna start a new one. The links are too thin. And this pine is a bitch.

    [​IMG]
     
  3. Thomas

    Thomas Senior member

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    For your first time doing this, that's not bad at all. I think a lot of beginners tend to benefit a lot from sandpaper in terms of smoothing, FWIW.

    I'm not really hands-on with this stuff, but from what I've read re: carving, basswood or linden is the usual carving lumber. Most other woods are too-coarse-grained or too hard.

    FWIW, I think aromatic cedar is kind of soft and reasonably easy to deal with, but I'm not a carver.

    If you can get to a woodcraft they have a number of carving tools - look for a chip carver if you want detail and intricacy.
     
  4. Big Pun

    Big Pun Senior member

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    Thanks for the reply Thom, Part of what drew me to whittling is how inexpensive it is, though I suppose I can make it pricey by buying top of the line tools for every situation. :laugh: Nobody else?
     
  5. Thomas

    Thomas Senior member

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    Oh, it's still inexpensive, relatively speaking.

    I may be wrong, but it always seemed to me that older tools were generally made of better steel - perhaps you can snag an old Wostenholm pocket knife for a reasonable amount. They made great razors, back in the day.
     
  6. Nosu3

    Nosu3 Senior member

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    I've wanted to get into it. Where do you source the wood?
     
  7. Big Pun

    Big Pun Senior member

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    I bought some quality wood from Michael's, a craft store chain. Most craft stores and hobby stores will be a good source. I'd avoid the big home improvement places, unless you wanna saw down massive pieces.
     
  8. Big Pun

    Big Pun Senior member

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    Pics of my new project, a ball trapped in a cage. Now it looks like an egg in a cage, but I have the basic idea down. :laugh:

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Thoughts for the future:
    Wear a finger guard!
    Get a gouge, I used the knife pictured and 100 grit sandpaper only for this project, and it was hell.
     
  9. imunique

    imunique Well-Known Member

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    Oh, it's whittling, not whistling...

    FWIW, I think you have done a great job there! My uncle is a carpenter and he makes desks and tables and beds.

    What you do is new and relaxing, and mostly for fun I suppose. Keep it on!
     
  10. Reggs

    Reggs Senior member

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    When I was a kid I would make spears and stakes, then paint them.
     
  11. Thomas

    Thomas Senior member

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    That's not bad, BP. A few thoughts, and you may know some of this already:

    One - how sharp is your knife? your endgrain cuts look a bit ragged, your knife should be able to make clean slices of endgrain. You may need to re-hone as you go, if it seems you're having to muscle the knife through.
    Two - when I chop mortises I usually stay just inside the waste line until I hit full depth - then I make the defining chops and (hopefully) get clean edges. It looks like you're inside on some areas and outside on others.
    Three - pay attention to the grain - wood tends to tear out along the grain lines so you want to plan your cuts carefully to avoid tear-out.

    Good luck and take your time.
     
  12. Big Pun

    Big Pun Senior member

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    Thanks for the tips, Thom. I definitely could re-hone the blade. Do you have a specific sharpener you swear by? Do you use a whetstone?
     
  13. Thomas

    Thomas Senior member

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    I use a King brand (I think it's IceBear now) 1000/6000 Japanese waterstone: they cut quickly but dish like mad when you have a curved blade I use it for cooking knives, razors, and carpentry tools. After that, I'll use a leather strop pasted with either green chrome or Flexcut gold (for razors and chisels/plane blades)

    That said, there are many roads to Rome. Oilstones, DMT diamond stones, sandpaper - all of that will get you a good edge with the proper technique.

    One sharpness test I use is to shave a part of my arm: that's plenty sharp enough to slice end-grain and should hold an edge for a while.
     

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