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Tiki Central Forums Creating Tiki Tiki Carving the magic of the simple chisel . . .
the magic of the simple chisel . . .
pdrake
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jan 13, 2006
Posts: 1767
From: las vegas
Posted: 2010-01-17 11:12 pm   Permalink

so, i haven't carved with my big chisels in over 2 years. i recently started again and for some reason, i'm treating them different. they're more of a creative tool than just something to remove material. it's odd.

i seem to have a better appreciation for what they do. the sharpness and precision they hold is more than i ever thought.

good steel is important. anyone just starting, keep in mind that the chisels you may start with are not the obstacles to your art. sometimes the artist is only as good as the tool

i'm not saying i'm great, but it sure makes a difference when you see a line in the wood then put a tool to it and it happens, instead of fighting the grain and slope. having to really muscle a tool is never a good thing. there's a reason they call the wrong tools, "knuckle busters".

sorry to ramble . . . i was going to try and get feedback on how people handle their chisels. do you hold it tight, do you just put your hand around it? do you use a hard, wooden mallet or a tiny hammer with little, yellow, plastic heads (;-P)?

i think that chisel control is an important part of carving. even if you choose to use power tools, i think that chisels come into the equation at some point.

mahalo for reading this far.
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pdrake
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jan 13, 2006
Posts: 1767
From: las vegas
Posted: 2010-01-17 11:15 pm   Permalink

oh, and another thing i wanted to get feedback on . . . what's the percentage or difference to you on when and how you use one to push by hand or by mallet?

thanks, again . . .
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give of yourself. it's the most precious of all gifts.


 
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TikiMango
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jun 17, 2008
Posts: 798
From: Satellite Beach, FL
Posted: 2010-01-18 03:31 am   Permalink

I tend to hold my chisels loosely in my hand when I am removing large chunks of material. It's sort of like making an "OK" symbol with my fingers to guide the handle. I have beat-up chisels (old and worked) for this. When I get down to "holding the line" and finer detail I find that I hold the handles tighter (other three fingers come into play), but still with a fairly loose grip. I use an 18oz urethane mallet for the most part, but sometimes I tap it with the palm of my hand, or just push it when I need to. That's when it helps to really have a sharp edge.

I redress my edge after about 10-15mins of carving, starting with 220 silicon carbide sandpaper, then I move to 400 and 800. I few passes on each grit and I'm ready for more carving. All this talk, I need to get back to using my chisels, I've been addicted to the bone for too long.


 
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laojia
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Feb 04, 2009
Posts: 942
From: Metz Lorraine France
Posted: 2010-01-18 05:57 am   Permalink

For myself:

- Chopping with mallet to trimming and removing much material



- Chisel (and flat gouges!) hand pushing to work the curve and have a pre-finishing condition.



It all depends also on the quality and hardness of wood. One thing is sure, the quality of steel and the sharpening is essential for a clean cut without tear. It's like cutting pencil before drawing...

J.


 
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Cap'n Pharaoh
Grand Member (first year)  

Joined: May 07, 2009
Posts: 94
From: THE TASMAN SEA
Posted: 2010-01-18 07:53 am   Permalink

I agree with Tikimango.... I tend to hold my chisels loosely , when I first started carving I used to wear a motorcycle glove on my left hand , complete with kevlar caps.... It really saved my knuckles from getting broken.

 
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furball
Tiki Centralite

Joined: Aug 26, 2009
Posts: 44
From: Oregon
Posted: 2010-01-18 08:18 am   Permalink

I'm pretty new at this but already love the chisels. Much cleaner and more precise than any power tool, IMO. I try to hold semi-loose, like holding a drumstick, if you grip the heck out of it, you get tired quickly. I bought cheap chisels and they are worthless, good thing they were cheap. HAAHAA.. Now I use Flexcut and it's a world of difference. I sharpen with 1000 grit wet/dry (found in the automotive dept.) on a thick piece of glass then finish with a leather strop. I strop often while carving and it helps.

 
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