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Review of Schaaf Carving Tools

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  • Review of Schaaf Carving Tools

    I love these tools but thought that you guys might enjoy a video on them from someone else. Enjoy and have fun.


  • #2
    While I am glad to see a new company enter the market, not selling anything but a starter set leaves these of little interest to me. Availability of various sizes and profiles has kept me adding Pfeil chisels to my original set of Pfeils. I have recently ordered some Stubai fishtail gouges as I am not in a great hurry for them. I hope they are worth the wait.

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    • #3
      I looked at the variety of sweeps in the Schaaf tool set. Much more useful for both relief and round than I expected (better than Pfeil sets).
      I don't use gouges much any more. I would like to buy a couple of Schaaf from open stock, just to see what they're like. #5 and #7 sweeps are useful to me.
      Brian T

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      • #4
        I know they are working up more profiles and sizes, but as a startup, they had to start somewhere. I'm planning a review in the upcoming issue of WcI.

        Best Regards,
        Bob Duncan
        Technical Editor, Woodworking/DIY

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        • #5
          Nice review on these tools, I almost bought a set last year because my sister thought she had lost two rolls filled with pfeils. I’ve recommended to a few friends to try them but now I’m much more confident in doing so. I know they are made in the Far East which I’m not totally against if the quality is there. It’s nice to a good tool a reasonable price. I’d like to buy the larger 5# bent gouge once they are available

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          • #6
            Ditka! That's one heck of a Chicago accent there.

            Good to see another player in the carving tools.

            Stubai are good and I live in the same state as the importer and know him personally - Chris Whillock. Good guy to deal with.

            I really don't agree with the video on the thickness of tools. I prefer the thinner Pfeil and Stubai. Black walnut is NOT hard. Oak and hard maple are what I consider hard. Thinner chisels generally work better for me, but then I don't do big 3d sculpture where I'm trying to remove tons of wood early one. Can't speak to the Pfeil v tool as I don't own any. My vtools are Stubai, Henry Taylor and Mifer.

            I much prefer the Stubai handle to the Pfeil.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by PittsburghTim View Post
              I have recently ordered some Stubai fishtail gouges as I am not in a great hurry for them. I hope they are worth the wait.
              I think you will like them. I have several. Some are the Euro size because they don't make the full size fishtail in all sizes. The English makers, Dastra and HIrsch/Kirschen/Two Cheeries/Lamp are better for having a full line up of fishtail compared to Pfeil or Stubai. Personally I think the Stubai steel is something else. I engraved my initials on several of my tools and will say that the Stubai felt markedly different engraving as opposed to the other. Much tougher. I don't know if it's because of the make of the steel or if they hardened it further back. I was engraving near the handle.

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              • #8
                I am so glad to see another positive review in Woodcarving Illustrated for the Schaaf carving tools. I have had mine for over a year now, continue to enjoy them and find them comparable to Pfeil and other "high-end" (price, not necessarily better quality) tool manufacturers. They tell me they do intend to offer additional profiles in the relatively near future but seem to be working hard to ensure that their new tools are at least as good as the original set. A lot of experienced carvers warn against sets, insisting that it is better to buy individual profiles but I found each of the tools in their original set to be very useful and at a cost much lower than any comparable quality tools. Unlike some tool sets I have seen, they really put a lot of work into including tools most woodcarvers would actually use instead of including useless tools just to increase the numbers of tools in the set. The whole set is offered for less than the cost of just a few of the "high-end" tools and their set includes a high quality tool roll to boot. I really couldn't see how anyone just getting started in carving with traditional full sized tools could get a better deal on quality tools. I have over two hundred "high-end" tools from various manufacturers and count the Schaaf tools as some of my best and my favorites. You do need to be prepared to do some basic sharpening but that is a skill that goes hand-in-hand with carving. If you do discover that there are additional tools you really need you can always add them from other sources on a piece-by-piece basis if need be. I calculate I have saved at least three hundred dollars with my first set compared o buying the same profiles of comparable quality from other makers. Any new tool profiles they offer will definitely find a place in my shop when they come out.

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                • #9
                  It is good to see reviews based on experience and function rather than price or appearance. I suspect that no single brand produces the best tool in every profile, so I do not judge an entire line based on their V-tool. I was a little skeptical when I saw his wobbly grinding and honing setup, but at low speed it was probably okay. It takes a long time to become really familiar with the use and maintenance of each profile. I can't imagine achieving that level of skill on 200 tools.

                  The ultimate test of any tool is the work produced. It would be interesting to see some of the projects completed by the reviewer.
                  Last edited by pallin; 08-19-2019, 10:46 AM. Reason: Added comment

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by pallin View Post
                    It is good to see reviews based on experience and function rather than price or appearance. I suspect that no single brand produces the best tool in every profile, so I do not judge an entire line based on their V-tool. I was a little skeptical when I saw his wobbly grinding and honing setup, but at low speed it was probably okay. It takes a long time to become really familiar with the use and maintenance of each profile. I can't imagine achieving that level of skill on 200 tools.

                    The ultimate test of any tool is the work produced. It would be interesting to see some of the projects completed by the reviewer.
                    There is such a review and demo on YouTube by a professional carver, but I can't recall his name. A search under "Schaaf carving tools" should turn it up. By the way, he speaks very highly of them.
                    Arthur

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                    • #11
                      Yes Arthur, it is the original post of this thread. My comments were based on seeing his YouTube video.

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