Friday, April 8, 2011

No Band or scroll saw-No Problem

More than once I've heard folks say that they are waiting to buy a band saw or a scroll saw so they can start to carve. I've heard apartment dwellers say that they can't carve because they cannot use a band saw or scroll saw in the apartment. While a band saw and scroll saw can be an important tool to a wood carver, the lack of one does not mean one cannot carve. The main function of the saw to a wood carver is to start to shape the block of wood by removing wood that will otherwise have to be removed by knife or gouge. If you are carving a figure out of a large block of wood there may have to be a lot of wood removed. So in the absence of power saws, why not "carve smaller". Start to use a 3 to 5 inch block of wood. There's not nearly as much wood that has to be removed. There are other benefits to newer carvers when they carve smaller. No investment in power saws. Less money spent on wood. Less discouragement with a long time to complete the larger carving. You may feel more "free" to try new things when your wood cost is so small. So, just grab a knife and/or gouge and give "carving small" a try. When no power tools, try carving smaller


Hans said...

I agree. A band saw or scroll saw can be a great tool, but you can do a lot of carving without them. I often rough out carvings with just hand tools.

For example, a hand saw can be used to make cross cuts that allow the remaining wood to be quickly removed with chisels or gouges.

I have a recent blog post that shows one of my student's progress on a carving that he roughed out with hand tools. You can this example at:

Roger said...

The 3 / 5 minute owl is a good example of carving without power tools. They are fun to carve and now after about 12 of them, I'm knocking them out in way under two hours each.


Agree... due to health reasons..and not being able to bend over or look and/or reach up this pass year and more.. I have returned to being a basic STICK carver/whittler..I buy my wood all cut and sanded in aprox. 12 inch length's and .. at 1/2 inch SQ and up to 1 and 1/4 inch.. that way I can just work from the stick and cut off when finished. I still us the band saw a little..
Just trying to stay above the grass for a few more years..
Will Hayden
in Vancouver WA

Tom H said...

Hey Will, Great to be hearing from you.