Wood carving is one of the oldest arts that has many fans in different countries. Always one of the artists’ concerns is that which tool is the best suited for wood carving. Many woodcarvers may ask what are the best wood carving tools.

Especially for those who want to work with hardwood, this can be a big challenge. There are generally four styles of wood carving, with tools and techniques for each one. You must first determine which style you intend to engage in.

In this article, we are going to introduce the best wood carving tools for different types and styles.

Wood Carving Methods

There are three methods of carving on wood, each with its own tool and equipment:

  • Hand carving
  • Mechanical carving
  • Laser carving

If you are going to do wood carving by hand, this article has provided you the necessary information about the hand wood carving tools. The other two methods will not be the subject of this blog post.

Hand Wood Carving Essentials

Hand wood carving is really an enjoyable art form if you have these three:

  • Proper Tools
  • Patience and Perseverance
  • Right Wood

Proper Tools for Wood Carving

What is the meaning of the “proper tool” here? A proper tool is a tool that matches the wood carving style you are considering. This tool should be sharp and have standard quality. So we are dealing with two different issues:

  • Choosing the right tool for considered wood carving style
  • Choosing quality tools

We will explain both so you can choose the best wood carving tool.

Patience and Perseverance

Hand wood carving requires patience, tranquility, and perseverance. You should know that the proper tool is not enough. If you have the best tools, you can’t create a wonderful work of art without patience and perseverance. Some wood carving styles like the chip carving, are so delicate that some woodcarvers use the term of zen carving. See zen carving, the minimalist way of miniature chip carving.

Right Wood For Hand Wood Carving

Choosing the right wood can make your life easier. You definitely have to use the right wood to create amazing wood-carved artwork. All the information needed in this area is available at types of wood for carving.

What are the Best Wood Carving Tools?

To answer this question, we must first classify the carving tools. There are generally two types of carving tools:

  • Hand carving tools
  • Power carving tools

Most of the time, people who ask this question are actually looking for the best hand tools for wood carving. Note that the power tools here are the electrical tools used for hand wood carving.

The Best Hand Tools for Wood Carving

The Best Hand Tools for Wood Carving
The Best Hand Tools for Wood Carving

Generally, hand tools for wood carving are divided into two major categories:

  • Knives
  • Chisels and Gouges

A set of tools that comprises of different types of knives and chisels makes a broad range of wood-carved projects possible.

If you have a little bit of creativity that you want to channelize into action in the wood carving field, you won’t need a complete set of these tools. Only one type of knife works well for many people. But if you want to grow professionally in this field, you need to have a complete wood carving tool set with all the different sizes and shapes of tools.

The kind of gouges, chisels, and knives help you to create beautiful projects and figures by chipping, cutting, scraping woods.

The variety of these tools in the market can be overwhelming. However, with the understanding of what you need for different projects, it should be easy for you to find the proper hand tools for wood carving.

Best Knives

A wood carving knife can be useful for different purposes like general wood carving. But it is better to use a special knife for different purposes like shaving, letter carving, detailing, and chip carving.

Knives for wood carving

If you want to select the right wood carving knife, there are many factors to consider, such as the blade type (knives are available in a variety of blade shapes, each one made for a specific purpose) and the carving work (carving style). Let’s introduce the 5 best knives for wood carving:

  • Morakniv Wood Carving 164 Hook Knife
  • Flexcut Chip Carving Knife
  • Morakniv Carving Junior 73/164 Knife
  • Flexcut Pocket Jack for Carving
  • Sarge Knives SK-10N Vision Maker Carving Knife

For more information about these knives see https://www.knifeguides.com/best-wood-carving-knife-reviews/

In terms of quality, chip carving knives come with a blade that is 1-1/2 inches long and a handle that is just the ideal size for the hand. One of the problems with low-quality knives is that they lose their edges soon. So high carbon steel ones are the best since they will keep a sharp edge for a long time.

Chisels and Gouges

Chisels and Gouges are basic wood carving tools. A gouge is basically a chisel with the cutting edge bent into a curve that has different sizes. The size depends on the kind of carving you plan to do. Instead, the edges of the chisel are perfectly straight. In the figure below you can see the difference between these two tools.

Chisels for carving
Chisels
Gouges for wood carving
Gouges

Gouges remove excesses of wood quickly, especially from a flat surface, where the corners of a flat chisel would get stuck on the surface. Also, gouges allow you to carve precise grooves and trenches of different designs.

V-tools

Like a gouge, a V-tool is used to carve grooves. However, a V-tool has two straight cutting edges joined in the center, rather than the curved profile of a gouge. Therefore, the V-tool cuts a sharp V-shaped groove. It is useful for outlining elements in a carving and for adding hair and fur texture.

V-tools for wood carving

For more information, see http://woodcarvingillustrated.com/blog/2017/09/04/great-gouges-essential-tool-kit/

Best Power Carving Tools

In power carving, a bit is the part of the power tool that will do the job. A power carving tool, like a flexible shaft machine or micro motor, spins the bit at a high speed and removes the cutting surface.

Dremel Tools

You can use the Dremel tool to cut through materials such as drywall or a piece of wood. When you purchase a Dremel rotary tool, you might get a cutting kit that offers you a variety of attachments to use.

Dremel Tools for wood carving
Dremel Tools for Wood Carving

Conclusion

In this article, we have reviewed the best wood carving tools. You need to know the types of carving styles to choose the best tool. Then you can choose the right wood carving tool depending on your budget.

In general, more important hand-carving tools include knives, chisels, gouges and V-tools. Where the best power carving tool for hand wood carving is a Dremel tool.

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