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  • Tools

    For anybody that cares.

    Have been comparison testing some Ramelson tools against Flexcut, Stubai, and Pfiel Swiss Made for the past three months. I liked the Flexcuts so much I gave them away. The Ramelsons are very good tools. They do need a honing and stroping before you use them, but once that is done I like them as well as the Stubai's and Pfiels. Except for the veiners. I like the Stubai veiners better than any of the others because of how deep they are, I mean really deep. The Pfiel's are great as long as you stick with softer woods and avoid knots. If I had it to do all over again I think I'd just buy the Ramelsons and a few of the Stubai veiners and save myself a lot of money. Nahhhhh, buying tools is tooooooo much fun. I'm working on knives now. Still haven't found anything I like as well as my pocket knives.

  • #2
    Re: Tools

    Thanks for that post.I was just getting ready to ask if you knowledgable people a similiar question.Would anyone of you buy the PFEIL 'Swiss Made' Brienz Collection or the PFEIL 'Swiss Made' Professional Carving Set?Both sets are on page 103 of the Woodcraft catalog for Sept. 2002.A great deal of the carvings I do are hand held and I was wondering if anyone thought that the PFEIL Palm Handled Carving sets and all PFEIL tools are overrated and/or overpriced?

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    • #3
      Re: Tools

      Eddy,
      I will share a little insight into Stubai 'X-tra Deep' Veiners.
      You probably noticed the grind is different than most gouges.
      The bottom of the U leads the wings of the tool; there is a good reason why it is ground that way.

      For ease of this example, take a block of basswood, on the end-grain, twist the veiner straight into it.
      Continue twisting and it will cut a perfectly round hole the diameter of the tool until the handle bottoms out on the wood.

      How you ask? First because how it is ground, and secondly because the shank is tapered to allow it to pass thru.

      Okay, so what? Well, if you ever carve a caricature, you may need to hollow out the hand so it will hold somthing; a 2 or 3mm works perfect for the job.

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      • #4
        Re: Tools

        grooze - The pfiel's are fine tools, and if you are going to be carving softer woods, which most people do, they will serve you well. If you decide to buy them might I suggest you check out KMS Tools, they have excellent prices. As I recall they ones shown on the internet are in Canadian $ so don't get scared off. Incidently, your credit card company makes the conversion automatically. It worried me at first, but works fine. Don't know the url off the top of my head, but google will find it for you.

        Rick - Thanks! Had not noticed that. Going to come in handy on the Wizard I am fixing to start as a bd present for oldest daughter. He's going to be needing to be holding a staff. Guess I should do the hole and then finish the hand (for strength).

        Everybody else - My initial comments are in reference to palm tools only. Have no idea how the rest of the sizes work. I do know from using my malletable stubai's that it is a whole different world using the larger tools. As for the reciprocating chisels, I am at a total loss. (Here I origianlly had a long explanation of why I thought certain tools would work well but decided I had by foot in my mouth all the way to the knee already, so shut up already).

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        • #5
          Re: Tools

          I use the Phiel gouges without any complaints. I have both palm tools and the intermediate set. Most of my carvings are medium to small caricatures and animals - the largest to-date about 4 x 15 and the smallest, well real small. My favorites are the small number 11 and 9 palm gouges. I like the # 7 for roughing out too. I just purchased a set of Henry Taylor palm gouges after 'borrowing' a few of the tools from a friend. I really like them because they are a little shorter than the Phiel tools. They are deep - even on the wider tools. If you want to see a picture, you can look at belchercarvingsupply. Another distribution company in the US is the Woodcraft shop - but I don't think they have a web site. These tools need to be honed before use, but are not too expensive.

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          • #6
            Re: Tools

            the url for the woodcraft shop is

            http://thewoodcraftshop.com/

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            • #7
              Re: Tools

              Eddy,

              Thanks for the info. I had been looking at gouges and after reading your results I am going to order the Ramelson WCS six piece palm set from The Woodcraft Shop. At only $34.95 it is close to half the price of the Stubai and Pfiel sets I have looked at.

              I also don't enjoy the flexcut tools. They just do not feel 'sturdy' enough for me and I do not like the feel of their handle shape. I have very large hands and the flexcut handles are too small for me to get a good grip.

              Good whittlin, Cliff
              Charles City, Iowa
              http://cliffordparker.tripod.com

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              • #8
                Re: Tools

                Folks,

                I'm fairly new to this board and really enjoy the info it contains.

                Fat Eddy,

                What kind of pocket knife do you typically carve with. I've always had much better luck with non-folding bench knives. The portability factor of a pocket knife makes it attractive, but I've never been able to get as good an edge as I get on my regular carving knives. Any insight would be appreciated.

                thanks again.

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                • #9
                  Re: Tools

                  Pork Chop - I use two different ones (one I carry in my shop clothes and the other in my 'go to town clothes.'}

                  one is a model 303 Buck available at wal-mart for around $30

                  the other is a 'Old Timer' stockman that measures 3/14' closed and 5 3/4' with the large blade open, sorry but there's not model number on it. Believe it is a 'medium' stockman.

                  Don't plan on gtiving either a quick honing and stroping and then carving with them. The bevels need to be redone. The old trick of putting a dime under the back edge to get the right bevel doesn't work with them because of the thickness of the blade. You need to almost lay them flat to get the right bevel. It takes about an hour per blade doing it by hand. Of course you only need to do it once. Unless you really want the portability, it's almost not worth it. But I started with pocket knives before I even knew there were carving tools/knives (about 1960 or so). I've only bought four and still have three. Two of which I still use. The third is too big.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Tools

                    I use an old standby; the Boy Scout 'whittler's' knife. Costs under 25 bucks at the local supply shop. It's made by Camilus, has a fine grade carbon steel and three blades designed specifically for carving. It shouldn't need any honing prior tu use, but a good stropping won't hurt.

                    You can find similar knives made by Case, Uncle Henry, Buck, and a few others, all for between 25 and 80 bucks, but for the money the BSA is the best I've seen and it compares favorably to the more expensive models.

                    Al

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                    • #11
                      Re: Tools

                      I have two pocketknives a three bladed Imperial with carbon steel blades and a three bladed Ranger with stainless steel blades. One is what would be called a medium Stockman style/size and one is what would be called a Jr Stockman style/size. I buy my knives off e-bay and have paid less than $10 each including shipping.

                      I do sharpen these with the old dime trick and haven't had any trouble working on sticks in the field with them.


                      Good whittlin, Cliff
                      Charles City, Iowa
                      http://cliffordparker.tripod.com

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                      • #12
                        Re: Tools

                        Many thanks for the link Clifford. I have searched many times, but it never showed up. Lots more tools listed than I expected.

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                        • #13
                          Re: Tools

                          clifford - Your absolutely correct, using the dime you won't have any trouble. By laying the blade almost flat you might, but you'll get a lot finer edge. If the edge does crumble a bit you can put an extra little bevel on it to restor the edge and still end up with a sharper edge than by the dime method. I hope that made sense. I'm starting to talk like I see; pretty bad.

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                          • #14
                            Re: Tools

                            Eddy,
                            Just got a Halvie knife that I havent tested yet. Will let you know though that it is one of the most comfortable fit for my hand. Will let you know how it is when I start using it.

                            Jay

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                            • #15
                              Re: Tools

                              Anyone ever used any of the 'few' carving-specific folding knives? I've only seen a couple (one made by Oar and the other by Nott) but they are pretty pricey. I have a pocketknife that works ok, but I'd really like one that has the right blade(s) AND that locks. I always seem to bend the blade back in at some point and there's an accident in my future with that, I'm sure.

                              Thanx,
                              Brian

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