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Crooked Knife Sweep Choice

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  • Crooked Knife Sweep Choice

    I'm trolling for experienced opinions.

    Which sweep is best for small work?

    I'm coming around to the idea that I need a small/short (3/4") crooked knife. I've been working with crooked knives for more than a year, learning all the time. I suspect that all of mine are just too big (2") for details and shaping in tight circumstances.

    I've got a WIP where none of my edges can get into the gap at the shoulder of a wing to work on the bird's head.

    Sweep: J-shape, aka tip-bent? I use 2 J-bend knives and a pair of Mora 171more than all the others. Both Kestrel and North Bay have blades of the size that I think I need.
    Brian T

  • #2
    Re: Crooked Knife Sweep Choice

    I have a couple of Kestrel crooked knives with 1-1/2" and 1-3/4" blades in what you might call the J-shape. They're fine for shaping and shaving, but for detail work I often switch to a curved, double edged knife. This is, perhaps, because my detail work is done more in the style of whittling - that is, with the muscles of the hand rather than the arm. The crooked knives use arm and wrist action.

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    • #3
      Re: Crooked Knife Sweep Choice

      It will certainly be small, almost whittling motions.

      Suppose I glued a block of wood into the bottom of a beer mug with the end grain facing up. Now, carve a bird's head and beak into the block. Unlike the beer mug, I can get at what will become the top of the head and the underside of the beak.

      As most of the motions will be in the direction of the wood grain, more or less, I wondered if a small J-bend crooked knife could get me in there.

      pallin: are you suggesting that a straight blade might be better? I don't care which, but I haven't got tools to get in there.
      Brian T

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      • #4
        Re: Crooked Knife Sweep Choice

        Capeforge makes a smaller bent knife - several in fact. Take a look. The Knives at Cape Forge. You can just buy the blade from them.

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        • #5
          Re: Crooked Knife Sweep Choice

          Thanks, Sam. I took a look. Still too long, I think.
          I just got those WIP's out of the box again. Time to experiment with what I've got and try to imagine 3/4" of whatever sweep. It's the sweep that I can't decide on.
          North Bay Forge has some mini crooked knives but I can't buy the blade alone.
          Brian T

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          • #6
            Re: Crooked Knife Sweep Choice

            I've found that Kestrel's #7 is a good all-around knife. It gets in tight corners and it can also be used for smoothing. However it's not a blade for hogging wood, but that works for me since the pieces I work on aren't all that huge. That's the sweep that's in my hand most often.

            S~
            Carvito ergo sum.

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