For more information on the gouge, see our beginner site Common Woodworking.

Briefly. In answer to the question, why I prefer a #7 35mm gouge over a hand scorp or hook knife, it’s dead simple really. Whereas knives and scorps do similar and sometimes the same work, they are designed for different action, presentation and even wood types, I think. DSC_0018This gouge cuts a spoon in a few minutes in hard, dense-grained hard wood and open-grained soft, even punky wood. It also carves both deep and shallow bowls and chair seats and all this the wood from dried and green with little resistance either way. The gouge cuts incrementally deeper and within six cuts from each end delivers a near perfect spoon bowl to the shape I imagined just a few minutes before. Right. Remember that I bought that Hirsch #7 35mm gouge two weeks ago from Highland Hardware? yesterday I took it from the plastic packet and without any further sharpening, scalloped out the spoon bowl As I challenged the blows to task I felt so directly connected as the fibres cut, split and separated from the remaining wood. I think that this could be the best spoon gouge I’ve ever used. Glad to have it in my tool box. The wood? Kiln-dried American white oak.

Of course there’s a place for different methods, techniques and indeed tools. I think the gouge can be used for a much broader spectrum of tasks without compromising quality, economy of movement. There are other issues of course, such as stock holding, but that’s not much of an issue. There are also issue of whittling from a stool instead of standing at a bench. it all depends on what you want. Now we do have inshaves for carving seats, but that’s another sphere.

2 Comments

  1. Michael Tekin on 6 April 2013 at 9:19 pm

    Paul,

    You mentioned that the Gouge you purchased from Highland in the prior blog post was a #7 35mm. Is this was you meant or do you also use a #5 37mm gouge as you mentioned in this blog? Is their a big difference in a #5 vs #7 profile?



  2. Paul Sellers on 6 April 2013 at 9:21 pm

    Just changed it. Sorry. Yes, there is quite a difference, though both will work for spoons, but the #7 has a shallower sweep, just a different radii.



  • Mike Bullock on It’s All in the JoineryHaving worked with hand tool methods for several years now as a hobby, I've started to understand and respect the need for intuition. Early in the process, I spent an obsessive amo…
  • Steve P on It’s All in the JoineryI’ll be honest with you. When i wanted to get into hand tool woodworking after making stuff with a table saw and pocket holes, i knew i needed a real workbench. Somebody told me to…
  • Paul Sellers on Hall Hat, Coat & Shoe StandThey are but they tended to be unattractive, clunky and heavy too. I doubt many younger ones would want the style.
  • Paul Sellers on It’s All in the JoineryThere are indeed and they were all individually shaped all be it using a drum sander to put the twists in them.
  • Wills Kitchen on It’s All in the JoineryMr. Sellers, Are you saying there are 100,000 "P.A. Sellers" walking canes floating around in the U.S.? Those folks are blessed to have one if so.
  • Wills Kitchen on Hall Hat, Coat & Shoe StandMr. Sellers, Would you say that the tusk tenon "knock down" furniture method and style are still viable for the more transient population of today? I imagine night stands and such…
  • Stephen McGonigle on Hall Hat, Coat & Shoe StandThat's great news, I'll look forward to seeing it as I do all your projects. Without doubt you are the most influential craftsman, and we all thank you for sharing your talents and…