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Author Topic: Whittling/carving  (Read 1982 times)
Crafty_Dog
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« on: November 29, 2008, 08:52:11 AM »

Woof All:

My 9 year old son has gotten into whittling with the knife I gave him.  Recently while my portable chess set was in his care a bishop disappeared and so he carved a replacement. 

Out of this has grown the idea of carving an entire set.  Question presented:  Of the commonly available woods, which is the most desirable/easy to work with? 

I was very impressed with GM Sonny Umpad's carvings; perhaps one of his people (or anyone else) here can offer suggestions?

TIA,
CD

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Howling Dog
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« Reply #1 on: November 29, 2008, 06:03:05 PM »

Woof Guro Crafty,  For pieces of a chess set, I would possibley suggest Walnut for the dark pieces and possible Oak for the light colored.

Both hard woods but I think workable ......Walnut is one of my favorites because of its Dark color....its also a little more expensive due to it being a little more rare these days.....but I think the amount needed for half a chess set would be reasonable......maybe able to get scrape from a cabinet maker?
Do they have such things in your "neck of the woods" cheesy
                                        C-HD

Quote
I was very impressed with GM Sonny Umpad's carvings; perhaps one of his people (or anyone else) here can offer suggestions?

Impressive indeed!
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Howling Dog
Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #2 on: November 30, 2008, 09:05:33 AM »

Thank you C-HD.

Right now I am thinking more in terms of a readily workable wood for a nine year old boy than ones that will produce the highest quality result.  By this criterion, how do these woods measure up?
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Howling Dog
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« Reply #3 on: November 30, 2008, 11:51:30 AM »

Woof Guro Crafty, I guess I would probably go with a pine rather than the Oak......both would be a white or light color. The pine will be the softest and easiest wood to work with........ For the dark pieces you could always use a dark stain or finish.......
The walnut sure is prety though.....and IMO workable.....maybe see how the "white set" goes first.
Hope this helps....
                                                         C-HD
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Howling Dog
foxmarten
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« Reply #4 on: November 30, 2008, 07:24:01 PM »

woodcarvers.org says:
The following woods are soft and easy to carve, with basswood the preferred wood for beginners: basswood, aspen and butternut.  Basswood and aspen are white and butternut is brown.  Simple basswood cutouts are available at most craft stores and would be a good "first" project. After that you will probably want to go on to something a little more complex.  As you move on you will want to find a source to buy basswood. Carving supply stores and specialty wood stores sell carving wood.  There are many supply catalogs available for free from some of our links.  Don't start carving on an old piece of lumber from the garage or other "found" wood as you will probably just get discouraged and I would also suggest that you don't start with a hardwood, such as walnut. Wood has a grain which runs vertical up the tree. When you carve you need to know which way the grain runs.  If you are carving an animal the grain should run up and down on the fragile parts (like animal legs).  On a picture (relief carving) the grain should run vertically.

reel wood in riverside has a nice selection. if he is a "cub" then he must have a whittlin' chip and understand the blood circle i presume.
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When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro.
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Howling Dog
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« Reply #5 on: November 30, 2008, 08:16:25 PM »

Woof I certainly would not argue with "wood carvers.org" and not being familiar with "basswood" I googled it and indeed it is a favorite among begining carvers.
It is a very bland looking wood,not very appealing to the eye, and quite boring from what I read it seems to be recommended to be painted for a finish.

Though still similar in usablity to white pine, I think the pine might still be a good choice esp when it comes to apperrance....
Here's a link that has lots of woods on them with description, and usablity and how recommende to be used, also a picture of the wood that can be enlarged.

http://www.thewoodbox.com/data/wood/basswoodinfo.htm

               C-HD
P.S. even if you don't choose the walnut......its still worth a look for its beauty.
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Howling Dog
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