Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Whittling a Small Piggie

Whittling small is both a challenge and extremely fun. Whittling is carving with a knife only and small to me is anything under one inch. The first step in whittling this small piggie is to cut the blank. The piggie is whittled from a 1/2" x 1" x 4" piece of Basswood. Be sure that the grain of the wood is running in the 4" direction.
When whittling small it is always advisable to include a handle on the blank. And since whittling "small" may be associated with being frugal, trace another piggie on the handle end. After tracing the pattern onto the basswood, use a scroll saw to cut the side profile out.
Begin to think about the piggie in the 3 dimensional finished form.
1. Draw the ears on the blank.
2. Make stop cuts, outlining the ears. 3. Remove wood up to the stop cuts to shape the ears.
4. Round over the tops of the ears to make them "droop" over the sides of the head.
5. Separate the ears on the top of the head. 6. Begin to round off the piggies rear end. 7. Make stop cuts in back of the front legs, and in front of the rear legs.
8. Remove wood up to these stop cuts to shape the piggies belly.
9. Make stop cuts in front of the front legs to separate the piggies head from the body area.
10. Round over the piggies lower head area up to these stop cuts. 11. Use paring cuts to shape the piggies snout. Try a scooping paring cut. This means kind of "rolling" the knife up during the paring cut. 12. To shape the piggies tail, make a half circular stop cut on the butt. Then remove some wood up to the stop cut on both sides of the stop cut.
Thin the legs a bit to fit the body. Separate the legs if you want.

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