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Starting out in the UK

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  • #16
    Welcome. I do not believe that you need to look offshore for wood or tools.
    Lime is a very closely related species to what's called basswood in North America.
    Most of what you can buy is a lime hybrid, much more common that the real lime.

    After British Blades seemed to have gone belly-up, many of those bladesmiths
    migrated to either BushcraftUK (BCUK) or into Real Outdoors Forums (ROF).

    Look at Dave Budd's blades in BCUK. You aren't that far from Hans Karlsson in Sweden.
    Story goes that UK customs goes heavy on blade imports.
    Brian T

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    • #17
      As someone mentioned earlier, so much help and advice on offer, what a great forum. Thank you to everyone. I'll sit down and read again all the posts and go through the links that have been posted.

      A special thank you also for the reminder about the carving glove. That will more than likely be at the very top of my shopping list.

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      • #18
        Someone has already mentioned toolsandtimber.co.uk. Iv had good lime blocks from them and they do packs of different sized blanks.
        Tiranti.co.uk sell flexcut knives as individuals and as far as I can tell are the only sellers of Stubai chisels in the UK.
        Toolnut.co.uk also sell single knives. Flexcut and Mora. They had a shop somewhere on the south coast, near Brighton I think.
        fine-tools.com are a European company that sell Japanese knives. I haven’t used them before but they are worth a look too.

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        • #19
          Thank you for all the help and information Dan. Really appreciated.

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          • #20
            Working on the excellent advice from members on the forum, I've been trying to buy either the Helvie or Mike Shipley knives from the US. Unfortunately the stores I've tried and Mike Shipley himself seem unable to ship although Mike has given me another lead to try. I guess this is possibly due to the high costs involved in the shipping.

            I will keep trying though and, if I can't eventually get the knives I mentioned from the US, I'll buy one of the Flex Cut knives available here in the UK so I can at least get started. Thanks again for all the help.

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            • #21
              That is too bad about Mike not being able to ship. I would wait and see what you could do as far as getting a better knife than a FlexCut. FlexCut makes excellent palm tools, but their knives are just not that good.

              You might check with Paul at Deepwoods Ventures as well. Mike, Paul and Helvie make a far superior carving knife compared to FlexCut for the same or not much more money.

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              • #22
                enquiries@woodsmithexperience.co.uk
                https://www.rutlands.co.uk/pp+hand-t...g-tools+b03110
                Here is a couple of sites that might help you
                . . .JoeB

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                • #23
                  Originally posted by tbox61 View Post

                  You might check with Paul at Deepwoods Ventures as well. Mike, Paul and Helvie make a far superior carving knife compared to FlexCut for the same or not much more money.
                  Thanks for the link to Deepwoods Ventures, I have now contacted Paul and he's been really helpful and, the knives and videos on how he makes them look really good.

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                  • #24
                    Finally decided to go ahead and order my knives from the United States and I've narrowed my choices down to the three that have been mentioned most in this thread. Can anyone please advise on the best knives to go for?

                    The choices are Helvie, OCC and Deepwoods Ventures. All the stores I've spoken too have been most helpful as regards shipping to the UK but as I can't hold knives, the way they feel in the hand is something I can't add in to the mix. The only main difference I can see in the blades and from watching their videos is that the Deepwoods Ventures blades are hand made from round bar stock where the others seem to be flat.

                    Again any help or advice would be most appreciated.

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                    • #25
                      I mostly use the OCC detail knife, although my carvings are small...usually 3-5 inches. When I first started I thought I wanted to do relief carving because it would be easier than carving characters. Wrong ! Drifted to characters and bought different knives. Then I figured I need more gouges. Wrong again !

                      So I empathize with your problem. My suggestion is to get a knife, then see where you drift into the carving world. Europeans...Generally...use more gouges than knives and the US just the opposite. The main thing is to start making chips. And don't forget the sharpening.

                      Good luck.

                      Bill
                      Living among knives and fire.

                      http://www.westernwoodartist.com

                      Comment


                      • #26
                        Originally posted by woodburner807 View Post
                        I mostly use the OCC detail knife, although my carvings are small...usually 3-5 inches. When I first started I thought I wanted to do relief carving because it would be easier than carving characters. Wrong ! Drifted to characters and bought different knives. Then I figured I need more gouges. Wrong again !

                        So I empathize with your problem. My suggestion is to get a knife, then see where you drift into the carving world. Europeans...Generally...use more gouges than knives and the US just the opposite. The main thing is to start making chips. And don't forget the sharpening.

                        Good luck.
                        Thanks for taking the time to reply Bill.

                        After spending time watching videos on the net, the figures of the Country Folk and Characters is the way I want to go. I could spend hours just looking at them, I think they're brilliant. So I'm looking to buy at least a general carving knife and a detail knife too.

                        I did have problems on the Helvie website in that there are many different handle styles but nothing I could find that indicated which handle is which.
                        Last edited by FiestaRed; 01-06-2019, 07:47 AM.

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                        • #27
                          Originally posted by FiestaRed View Post

                          Thanks for taking the time to reply Bill.

                          After spending time watching videos on the net, the figures of the Country Folk and Characters is the way I want to go. I could spend hours just looking at them, I think they're brilliant. So I'm looking to buy at least a general carving knife and a detail knife too.

                          I did have problems on the Helvie website in that there are many different handle styles but nothing I could find that indicated which handle is which.
                          But...But...are you buying the "beauty" of a handle or the knife. Several here carve/make their own handles, so a wood handle is easy to shape if you want. The OCC feels fine in my hands, the Flexcut not so much. I don't know if the Treeline company ships overseas but I usually get my OCC stuff from them and they also have all the necessary items like Gloves, thumb protectors, etc. They are based in the state of Utah. Link: https://www.treelineusa.com/

                          Don't think Amazon sells OCC?
                          Bill
                          Living among knives and fire.

                          http://www.westernwoodartist.com

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                          • #28
                            Bill is correct, start with the minimum number of knives that you think you can get by with. Then as you find your preference in the type/style of carving you can add to your arsenal . A lot of beginning carvers ( me included) seem to think we have to have every tool available on the market to make us the #1 carver in the world....... only to find later on as we develope our skills/style we are only using a few of what we have bought and the rest are seldom ever used. The worst that can happen is you may have to wait a couple of weeks to get another knife that you have found that you need, and a bit more postage, but at least you will have tools that you use daily and not tools that are just gathering dust.
                            Wayne
                            If you're looking for me, you'll find me in a pile of wood chips somewhere...

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                            • #29
                              Originally posted by Soggy View Post
                              Bill is correct, start with the minimum number of knives that you think you can get by with. Then as you find your preference in the type/style of carving you can add to your arsenal . A lot of beginning carvers ( me included) seem to think we have to have every tool available on the market to make us the #1 carver in the world....... only to find later on as we develope our skills/style we are only using a few of what we have bought and the rest are seldom ever used. The worst that can happen is you may have to wait a couple of weeks to get another knife that you have found that you need, and a bit more postage, but at least you will have tools that you use daily and not tools that are just gathering dust.
                              Wayne
                              Thanks Wayne.

                              I teach wildlife and landscape photography here in the UK and I'm always surprised to see people that come on workshops totally loaded down with every lens and gadget you can think off. That's mainly why I'm asking so many questions of you good people as I'm starting out in woodcarving.

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