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  • Canoe

    So I worked on a little canoe tonight. Just using a flexcut 1.25 carving knife. How do I go about getting smoother cuts when hollowing something out? I have a v tool and gouge on order so im sure those will help, but plenty of people seem to make it happen with just a knife.

  • #2
    Here's the picture

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    • #3
      Brett: you need a crooked knife. Some call them "bent" knives. Pacific Northwest native carvers' knives.
      There's 3 ways to get there:
      1. Bash a blade out of an old rusty file in a ground trench forge and heat treat that. More work than you might be ready for.

      2. Buy a new or used (from a farrier) hoof trimming crooked knife. They all have a hooked scorp-like
      tip to clean out the frog in a hoof, OK? Clean it up and revise the bevel to 12 degrees.
      Bash off the handle if you don't like it and surface-haft your own of a size to fit your hands.
      I've made a couple dozen of these. You can cut a flat sidewall into a dish and carve a flat bottom at the same time.

      3. Buy a really good blade from a Pacific Northwest bladesmith and build your knife of a life time.
      Crescent in Vancouver is OK. Cariboo in BC is good but not cheap. North Bay Forge is great,
      I like the blades from Kestrel Tool. The classic 'J' shape is a Kestrel 'C' blade.
      = = =
      Everything you ever learned about freehand sharpening is bass-ackwards to do crooked knives.
      = = =
      I really like what you have started to do. It isn't typical western carving, it's another world away.
      I'd look for used farrier's knives, fix them and keep going.
      Then you know what questions to ask.
      Brian T

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      • #4
        Maybe rasp, if you have one, coarse sandpaper, but be ready to use lots of elbow grease until the new tools show up.
        . . .JoeB

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        • #5
          Here's an example of how a crooked knife can carve sideways with the grain to do the wall and the floor of a dish.
          Imagine that you are looking into the dish from the end.
          The popcorn dish is a single cedar block with an Aztec corncob formline carving in the sides. Flat walls and flat bottom.
          $5.00 farrier's knife conversion, as usual. Hook 010.jpgDish 07.JPG
          Brian T

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          • #6
            Thanks for posting that Brian and gave me some new information!
            Bill
            Living among knives and fire.

            http://www.westernwoodartist.com

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            • #7
              It isn't possible to get a clean cut in the bottom of the canoe with the knife you are using. And it looks a little ragged in the areas you can get to, so I suspect your knife isn't as sharp as it needs to be. To smooth the bottom, you will need a tool or knife with a bend in it. A spoon gouge or short bent gouge has a bend that lets you position the blade of the tool at the proper angle to smooth the wood inside the canoe. You will be able to get it better with the gouge you have ordered, but the V-tool probably isn't the best tool for this job. A dog-leg chisel might help flatten the bottom a bit, but a hook knife or scorp is the better choice for deeper scoops. (although you may have difficulty finding a hook knife small enough for your little canoe). Up- sweep knives have an upward curve that works well for cutting shallow curves, but wouldn't help much for what you are trying. If someone says they can do it with your knife, ask them to show you!
              'If it wasn't for caffeine, I wouldn't have any personality at all!"

              http://mikepounders.weebly.com/
              https://www.facebook.com/pages/Mike-...61450667252958
              http://centralarkansaswoodcarvers.blogspot.com/

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              • #8
                The task is quite simple when you explore the values of the Pacific Northwest crooked knives.
                The blades are made in all sorts of sweeps and sizes. What looks difficult is really very simple,
                one of the first things to learn to do. No gouge was offended in the making of a crooked knife.

                There guys are top bladesmiths in this game. You need what they show as a 'C' profile.

                Northwest Coast hand carving tools, adzes, crooked knives, sculptors supplies
                Brian T

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                • #9
                  Thanks for that link RV. My son carves spoons so he will be interested in these tools. Bret, like the others have said, you can't get there from here with a straight blade. Gouges, scorps are going to be the ticket to solve your issue. Mike's advice is pretty much spot on.

                  Tinwood

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                  • #10
                    That's the economic advantage to revising a farrier's hoof trimming crooked knife.
                    They all come with a hook tip that works like a built in scorp. See if you can buy one of those for $5.00.
                    You can see it in my picture. Then, if you want a point, you can cut off the hook at an angle with a Dremel!
                    Crook 009.JPG
                    Brian T

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                    • #11
                      it would be a world of fun trying for a canoe with all of the above mentioned tools and techniques. i have a couple homemade ones small enough. Bretts canoe does look very small for most such scorps, bent knives etc. on a whim i would try shaping out the inside with a 5/8" drum sander on a dremel in the meantime, lay it down as much as can do and pull it lengthwise.
                      make the next canoe big enough for the bent knives.
                      now i wanna try a canoe !
                      Denny

                      photos at........ http://wiscoden.jimdo.com/

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                      • #12
                        thanks for the link RV., i didnt know those nice ones came in that small a size.
                        Denny

                        photos at........ http://wiscoden.jimdo.com/

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                        • #13
                          If you have a Dremel, this would be good for carving out the inside of the canoe: https://www.woodcarverssupply.com/BN...ctinfo/265010/

                          Claude
                          My FaceBook Page: https://www.facebook.com/ClaudesWoodCarving/

                          My Pinterest Page: https://www.pinterest.com/cfreaner/

                          My ETSY Shop: https://www.etsy.com/shop/ClaudesWoodcarving

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                          • #14
                            John Dunkle makes some excellent crooked knives for fine detail work. He goes to a lot of wood carving shows and Bob Stadtlander sells his knives as well.
                            http://stadtlandercarvings.com/asset...unkleguide.pdf
                            Terry

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                            • #15
                              Center-hafted and a fairly continuous sweep, I wonder how well a Dunkle crooked knife could carve a flat bottom.

                              Crooked knives are the standard wood carving tool across the First Nations community of the Pacific Northwest.
                              There's far more to it that a single sweep in both size and design. Kestrel and North Bay are the top bladesmiths for these.
                              That's whuy I suggested a Kestrel 'C' design which is quite big and a J-shape. Kestrel makes many others of different sizes and sweeps.
                              You're far better off to buy blades and surface haft them on handles carves to fit your own hands.

                              The dish holds a full 9" Pyrex pie plate. The yellow cedar surface was textured with a crooked knife (revised farrier knife, actually).
                              I made it to mimic about a #5 gouge sweep.

                              Picture 581.jpg
                              Brian T

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