Best Suited for Carving
of us can pass a fine piece of cabinet work without wanting
to rub our hands over the surface if only to assure ourselves
that the piece is real and not a bit of our imagination. In
so doing we are paying a slight tribute to the beauty of the
wood. We may think this is not the reason, but if it isn't,
what else can it be? I have a table in my workshop I recently
made of mahogany for my use as a writing table. It's been there
about ten days and in that time, with only one exception, people
who came into the shop have looked at it, caressed the top with
their finger tips, and spoken of the beauty of the wood.
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mind the workmanship; that's beside the point. This to me is
quite understandable. I do it myself and ponder on the beauty
of the grain and wonderful feel of the surface.
Make "Dutchman" large enough to cover sap pocket completely.
Make sides square-grain to run in same direction as stock.
2. Scribe around "Dutchman" placed over sap pocket
with point of knife.
3. Make back-cut inside scribed line. Remove stock to 1/16.-inch
depth less than thickness of "Dutchman." Bottom off.
Pare stopcuts to scribed line for press fit.
4. Glue sides of cut-out. Press "Dutch man" in place.
Let glue set. Pare off top of "Dutchman." Proceed
the four most common woods used for carving in this country
are white pine, white oak, walnut, and mahogany. I have used
all four varieties in my work and what I found out about these
woods is summarized in the following comments.
Oak. A coarse-grained, dense, hard wood (Image 4). Fine detail
is difficult to develop in this wood because the alternate layers
of hard and soft wood tend to make the tools jump and chatter.
The wood is best for large, bold carvings, and its use, to a
great extent, is confined to church work. It would be difficult
to find a better wood for this purpose for the reason that the
massive effects that must be developed in church carvings are
best executed in a strong, hard, dependable wood. I have found
it difficult to work unless the carving tools are shaped up
with a longer lead on the heel than that used for woods of a
different character. With this longer lead on the tools, care
must be exercised in malleting the tools into the wood to avoid
TO BOTTOM OFF A CARVED SINKING OR SECTION
After stopcuts are completed and stock is removed, to smooth
off the bottom of a sinking or carved section, use long bent
chisel as shown above.
(b) If cut is across grain, hold chisel so that its cutting
edge is at a skew- an angle-with the "run" of the
cut. Move tool forward in direction of arrow, not sidewise.
With care, the bottom should come off smooth with few if any
tool marks. Make sure sides are pared off before "bottoming."
PURPOSE-To Prevent Tools from Overrunning Design
1. Hold firmer chisel vertical, bevel towards stock to be cut
away and in side scribed line (No. 3). Mallet chisel down gently
to about 1/8-inch cut. Follow all around inside scribed lines.
2. Remove stock inside chiseled lines, cutting side to side
(No. 4) with either firmer or long bent chisel. Continue process
to required depth.
3. Bottom off. If curved lines are involved, use properly shaped
straight gouges to make stopcuts. Cross cut and bottom with