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best wood for carving

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  • best wood for carving

    I am currently constructing a grandfather clock and i wanted to try a bit of carving as decoration but as i have tested on some woods (eg Pine) it splinters very easily because of its grain. So i would just like to have some opions on what kind of wood i should try out?

  • #2
    Re: best wood for carving

    Question? What kind of wood are you doing the grandfather clock in?

    I am a new carver and my first piece is a Santa that I am doing 3D and I could only find some laminated poplar when i looked...since then i have found some Bass wood and am itching to try my next pattern on it...from what I have heard and read here on the BB Bass wood carves easy and holds detail quite well...

    Hope that helps!
    "let the chips fly!"


    • #3
      Re: best wood for carving

      Try walnut if you are going to use different woods. Walnut will not splinter and takes detail increadably well. It is a little harder to carve but with sharp chisels carves like a dream.


      • #4
        Re: best wood for carving

        It depends on several things: what wood you are making the clock out of, how much experience you have in carving and if you want the same wood, colour and texture on the carving as on the clock, or completely different to accent it.

        Just about any wood can be carved, some just better than others. If you are beginner in carving, there was a great article in December 2003 issue of Workbench Magazine about carving shortcuts that a beginner could manage easily. There are plenty of other ways to dress up your clock without too much difficulty.

        Try your hand at a couple of different types of wood, you must have some scraps around. Mahogany carves beautifully, as does Walnut, and Butternut. You can get really sharp edges on Maple, Oak, Cherry and some of the exotic hardwoods, but hard to carve with edge tools. Boxwood, Apple and Pear are some of my favorites. Contrasting woods like Lime or Ebony look nice but are hard to carve, unless using power carvers.

        If you have the skill to make a clock, then you can manage some carving. Practice off the clock first.



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