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

DSC_0051I wrote this blog on making and using a spokeshave blade holder/extender because it was something that enables you to use a honing guide if need be, but also gives the added leverage you really need for applying upper-body pressure as you do in normal sharpening of blades. Without the extender your fingers cannot take such pressure and sharpening becomes tedious. DSC_0046This is especially so for those  unaccustomed to sharpening. Some time back we made a video but didn’t post it on YouTube yet so here it is. The extender can be used freehandIt  for polishing out on the strop or any other way you want too.


Hope you enjoy it.


  1. Siavosh on 22 April 2015 at 8:28 pm

    This is awesome, thank you for posting! I was thinking of buying a pre-made jig from online, but this looks like a fun little project.

  2. Hank Merkle on 22 April 2015 at 10:59 pm

    As usual a simple solution to a bit of a sticky problem. One other question – I hear you say that the blade as is could be used in a round bottom or flat bottom spoke shave. But you also mentioned that the heal of the bevel can interfere with the cut – I have a round bottom shave that chatters and I am going to look to see if the heal of the bevel is interfering with a clean cut – or perhaps you have other suggestions? My 155 performs flawlessly – but the round bottom chatters like a 6 year old at a swimming hole in May!

    • Paul Sellers on 23 April 2015 at 3:46 am

      Blade chatter is really more rare than people think and many woodworkers attribute interruptive surface cutting as chatter when it’s actually the whole spokeshave body and all skipping or skudding causing the interruptive surface pattern through interruptive cuts. That’s not blade bending at all, which is what chatter is. Chatter is an iterative flex of such minute interruption is leaves a super narrow band of surface marks a mere 1mm or less apart in the surface. I’m not saying it never is, but most often not. This skipping and skudding interruption is especially common with spokeshaves and in particular round bottomed versions, no matter the maker. Spokeshaves benefit from dead 30-degree bevels that are flat, not convex or concave, and being polished out dead flat too; at the same 30-degrees. So strop in the holder extender without lifting up at the end of each stroke. Also, with spokeshaves like this, consider sharpening only to 1200 and not stropping at all. This works very well too, surprisingly. I have found friction on the sole is a major contributor to staggered surface markings like chatter. Use light machine oil or candle wax to the sole and this usually cures any such problems. Also, the 151 round-bottomed is totally intolerant of too much blade protrusion. It only ever works well with thin shavings. I use my flat bottomed for most concave work until I get a tight curve and then I use the round-bottomed.

  3. Tico Vogt on 23 April 2015 at 12:20 am

    Excellent video.

  4. SteveM on 23 April 2015 at 2:13 am

    I’ve made one of those Veritas kit spokeshaves with a tiny little blade. I’m thinking that the screw holes can be used to mount it to the sharpening extender.

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