Wood Carving Accessories
Wood Carving Accessories
Along with the cutting tools there are a number of essential or desirable accessories available to the wood carver. They all add to the look of the finished piece, and should not be overlooked by the beginner.
I often hear the complaint that one just can’t get a good enough grip on a carving with a glove on… that it slips somewhat. Depending upon the glove, I don’t disagree… so grip tighter… or put your work on a work holder so you can keep your hands out of the way. Another option is a good glove with a gripper material attached to the fingers and the palm.
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Woodcarver’s MalletsI have been asked more than a few times “why are carving mallets shaped spherically rather than like a more traditional hammer?” One may well ask why hammers are flat faced. I suspect that the spherical shape goes back much further than the flat hammer and with good reason. When using a spherical shape only a small portion of the mallet need connect with the chisel to drive it into wood. It is also nearly impossible to miss with your strike as striking anywhere on the mallet is a bull’s eye. Yet, with a flat faced hammer, one must connect squarely or the hammer will glanced off and cause a miss-directed or weak strike. Reciprocating Woodcarving Tools
It is almost embarrassing to admit that several years ago, I purchased a Auto Mach reciprocating woodcarver. Before making the purchase, I tried several brands and the Auto Mach was, hands down, the best reciprocating tool on the market. Now, here is the embarrassing part… I bought the thing, and they are not cheap at about $300.00, but hardly ever used it. I am not sure why but I just never got into it. It is such a fine tool that I wished I had used it much more than I had but I have always been a traditional woodcarver and traditional hand tools seemed like the way to go.
Because of the hours I spend carving on a daily basis, and the ever present possibility of a bad cut, few things have become as important to me as comfort and safety while carving. This is why I hardly ever hold a carving in my hand while carving. I have several types of holding devices in my shop that enable me to carve comfortably, while at the same time keeping my hands behind the blade of my carving tool.
When I started carving I believed, from associating with carvers who produced small hand held items and worked with small bladed knives, that it was not real carving unless done strictly by hand. Some pieces required that I use gouges and chisels but more often, if I started with the knife, that's the way I finished.
Hold it right there! I bet the every time you hear this statement you think someone is in trouble. You might even be in trouble right now. I’m not there so I don’t know. I can tell you this: if you don’t have a safe way to hold your wood while you carve you will be in trouble very soon.