Monday, May 26, 2008

Practice Makes Better

Having read about the ideas of various carving projects to improve basic knife skills, both in the BCUK magazine and Tactical Knives, I wanted to get back in the saddle (or out of the sheath perhaps) with my wood carving. Rather than carving anything ambitious, even a try-stick (Mors Kochanski's favoured project to demonstrate various cuts) I simply wanted to get a hang of planing cuts toward and away from the body.
I found the away cuts to be deeper and more powerful but the cuts toward produced much finer shavings. In general my Mora was a handy knife for this but for making smooth surfaces the blade length and grip of the leuku make it a very practical tool.
I managed to make smooth surfaces by shaving them flat and then scraping with a knife edge at right angles to the grain. You just need to change the blade angle to the grain every now and then for best results.
I also cut a few square notches which I was pleased with, struggling more with X shaped ones. I tried cutting out some squares and found this fairly simple to a certain depth and then they got a little untidy. I should be able to cut a clean hole through a thin piece ok though. The leuku did an acceptable job here but the wider blade and stunter point didn't help here, a much easier job with the more.In all, aside from a shoe box full of shavings I haven't produced much. I am now more confident and have got a couple of techniques to a much higher standard than previously. All this was done with a piece of pine seasoned for about 6 months with a lot of resin and a knot in one end. Now all I've got to do is to get the shavings out of the carpet.


Mungo said...

Hello - great posts recently about the weather - interesting to read them.

I think I have a pattern for a try-stick somewhere in a sheaf of papers on my desk, I will try to locate and scan it. This was a pattern that Mors handed out on a course last year.



sam_acw said...

Thanks for the comment Mungo.
Glad that someone's reading them!
I have an article from the BCUK magazine on try sticks, I'd like to see what you've got all the same.
If you ever get around to copying all those hand outs.....