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Essential wood-carving tools every beginner needs

If you're planning on taking up wood carving, you will need the proper items to get started.

What are the best essential wood-carving tools every beginner needs?

Maybe you’re an aspiring carpenter, or maybe just someone who has extra time on their hands. Whatever the case, there’s nothing like creating something from nothing with your own two hands. Wood carving is an activity that provides just the creative outlet you need to satisfy you when you’re feeling restless or bored. But you can’t just use any knife to cut any wood. Most wood carvers use soft, porous woods like basswood, aspen or walnut. They also have knives made specifically for woodcutting, with different shapes and sizes to make sculpting easier.

Shop this article: BeaverCraft Wood-Carving Gouge ChiselBeaverCraft Spoon Carving Hook Knife and BeaverCraft Cut-Resistant Tape

7 wood-carving tools every beginner needs

Gouge chisel

BeaverCraft Wood-Carving Gouge Chisel

What you need to know: The gouge chisel is basically an ice cream scoop for wood shavings. You’ll use it to create smooth, rounded, concave surfaces.

What you’ll love: The quality and construction of this chisel is superb, and it won’t break no matter the pressure you put on it. It glides through wood like butter and will make sculpting things like bowls, cups and spoons easy.

What you should consider: Even though it looks safe, the chisel itself is very sharp and can cut you if you don’t take steps to protect your hands. This is only for push cuts. If you start hammering at it with a mallet, you might break it.

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Spoon knife

BeaverCraft Spoon Carving Hook Knife

What you need to know: The spoon knife is another knife with a curved edge made for scooping out wood chips and smoothing the insides of rounded surfaces.

What you’ll love: The cutting edge is sharp and durable; it won’t bend or break with the pressure you put on it.

What you should consider: Some customers reported that the blade arrived dull. Others also reported breakage, but they were using hardwood.

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Whittling knife

BeaverCraft Sloyd Knife

What you need to know: The high-quality whittling knife by BeaverCraft comes with a leather sheath for easy storage and has a wide range of uses.

What you’ll love: It’s good for general woodworking, from adding detail to smoothing edges. This knife is durable enough to cut through hardwood. It’s an all-purpose knife with a long blade for deep cuts or shaving away at large areas.

What you should consider: Some customers reported receiving a knife that had rusted, but the company replaced them.

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Hook knife

BeaverCraft Hook Knife

What you need to know: This hook knife is good for quick, accurate cuts, perfect for carving bowls.

What you’ll love: The steel is very sharp and the handle is nice and thick. It fits well in your hand and will last a long time. The best thing is it’s inexpensive.

What you should consider: Customers report that it’s very sharp but can dull easily over time. Consider investing in a sharpening kit.

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Wood-carving knife

BeaverCraft Cutting Knife

What you need to know: This knife is excellent for chip carving and decorating the surfaces of what you create. Use it to gently emboss surfaces or cut patterns into the wood.

What you’ll love: This durable knife is excellent for delicate cutting and intricate work. It maintains its sharpness well, but comes with a strop so you can keep it maintained and pristine.

What you should consider: It’s a small knife for beginner woodcarvers with a large ergonomic handle. Some customers have reported that it arrived dull, but it comes with a strop for sharpening.

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Protective finger tape

BeaverCraft Cut-Resistant Tape

What you need to know: The knives for woodcutting are razor sharp out of necessity, which makes it easy to slip and accidentally give yourself a new scar. To prevent that, take the steps to ensure your safety.

What you’ll love: Protective finger tape won’t get in the way of your dexterity or make your hands sweaty. The padded tape is like a thick second skin that works to keep your fingers intact.

What you should consider: You should wrap it around your fingers a few times for adequate coverage.

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Basswood carving blocks

BeaverCraft Basswood Carving Blocks

What you need to know: Basswood is the raw material that most beginning woodcarvers use. The soft wood has a light color and is great for sculpting figures or even making functional things like spoons, forks and cups.

What you’ll love: These wooden blocks are blemish-free and have a uniform, tight grain. The wood isn’t rough at all, making it really easy to cut.

What you should consider: Some customers report occasionally receiving wood that’s dried unevenly, making it more difficult to cut in some areas.

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Sam Bramlett writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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