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  • Rough out knife

    I was watching a video of Kevin Coates and saw that he made a custom rough out knife from a fillet knife. I'd like to purchase something similar and not have to make it myself. I currently do not have a rough out knife. Thanks!

  • #2
    Kevin's knife is pretty unique to him and I suspect lots, or most, people would find it difficult to use the way he does. What kind of carving and using what kind of wood do you intend to cut with it? There are many rough-out knives out there and it is mostly a matter of the blade shape and handle shape that you prefer. Helvie, OCC Tools and Flexcut are just a few of the quality knifes available.

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    • #3
      Currently have an occ tools 1 3/8 knife. I'm using basswood for now. I liked the way he is able to remove a lot of material quickly.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Greapotho View Post
        Currently have an occ tools 1 3/8 knife. I'm using basswood for now. I liked the way he is able to remove a lot of material quickly.
        Greapotho.... Don't be fooled by what you see. It's not the knife that makes the difference, it's the skill of the user and most importantly the sharpness of the blade. We have carvers turning out great products with Lowes or Home Depot utility knives and we have other carvers embarrassing the rest of us using the same Helvie, OCC Tools and Flexcut that Jjmg mentioned because they've master the art of sharpening and honing a knife.

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        • #5
          My "rough out" knives are officially considered detail knives, but they will get rid of the corners on a cut out because I know how to use them, and they are sharp. On larger carvings (for me, larger is 10-12 inch), I use a mallet and gouges.

          Claude
          Last edited by Claude; 10-15-2018, 11:14 AM.
          My FaceBook Page: https://www.facebook.com/ClaudesWoodCarving/

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Eddy-Smiles View Post

            Greapotho.... Don't be fooled by what you see. It's not the knife that makes the difference, it's the skill of the user and most importantly the sharpness of the blade. We have carvers turning out great products with Lowes or Home Depot utility knives and we have other carvers embarrassing the rest of us using the same Helvie, OCC Tools and Flexcut that Jjmg mentioned because they've master the art of sharpening and honing a knife.
            Ok. Do you have any sharpening stones that are recommended? I currently have a leather strop and compound.

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            • #7
              I think researching this site, will give all the answers you will need to get started, there are several threads on this site talking about what you are asking. this is a great site for info, but sometimes you have to work for it a bit., not being ornery, just giving you a nudge
              . . .JoeB

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              • #8
                Everyone gives good advice here. There are many better options that what Mr. Coates uses in his videos. Helvie, OCC Tools and Deepwoods to name a few. My roughout knives are a Gerald Sear's #3 Helvie, and a modified Stanley utility knife.

                I have watched his videos, and while they are interesting and he does pretty good work, I think there are better videos by Lynn Doughty, Arlene Zomer, or Gene Messer to help a newbie getting started.

                Mr. Coate's knife looked familiar to me, and then I realized what it was. In my opinion, it looks like he modified an Old Hickory butcher knife into a carving knife. I have several handed down from my grandfather that were from the 1930's and 40's. They have excellent steel, and are easy to sharpen, but that would NOT be the first knife to think of to modify into a carving knife. It might work well for him, as some of the wood he carves looks a bit like plain 2X4's and a bit sketchy to be carving, but that is just my opinion.
                Last edited by tbox61; 10-15-2018, 10:01 AM.

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                • #9
                  Why use a knife at all? Why not use a simple coping saw? Next to nothing in garage sales.
                  So I rigged one to cut with a push stroke and the other to cut with a pull stroke.
                  Much slower planned cuts as well.
                  Brian T

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Greapotho View Post

                    Ok. Do you have any sharpening stones that are recommended? I currently have a leather strop and compound.
                    Greapotho..... Technically, with most knives coming pre-sharpened by the manufacturer, you have all that you need. A good strop and compound is all that is necessary unless you break off the point of your knife or chip the blade in one way or another. In the event you want to re-do the edge I wouldn't suggest sharpening stones for a beginner. Automobile grade sand paper available at automobile parts supply stores and some hardware stores in varying degrees of grit will allow you to reshape a knife while at the same time, lessening the chance of ruining the blade. Start off at a rough Grit of 220/240 and work your way up to a Finnish grit paper of 1500/2000. Sandpaper sharpening is sometimes called the "Scary Sharp" method and I wish that I had known about it 20-years ago when I first started carving. It would have saved me a whole lot of money on stones and diamond hones which now just sit in my tool box unused. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QV8MtMU3Eck&t=14s

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                    • #11
                      I agree with Eddy. Sandpaper for repairs and maybe to put the edge back on due to wear after a year or so of carving. Just strop often and a lot. I usually find that 30 strokes both sides alternating back and forth will do the job.

                      Bob L

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                      • #12
                        Changing a farrier's crooked hoof knife into a wood carver is a little more brutal than that!
                        I grind from 25* down to 12* with a chainsaw file. Then, go to 400 paper and up.

                        Commonly honing edges every 30 minutes or so, adzes included.
                        Brian T

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                        • #13
                          Thanks all for the advice. I ended up making a purchase from helvie.

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                          • #14
                            I do not use a knife for rough out. I use the bandsaw, I use a saw, I use chisels with a mallet, To take off large pieces is almost impossible with a knife. Unless you are using softwoods.

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                            • #15
                              The use of Kutzall, Saburrtooth, or Typhoon, bur will allow for lots of wood removal, also shaping at the same time
                              . . .JoeB

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