Thursday, 9 July 2020


Spokeshave - the Forgotten Tool of Green Woodwork

Many green woodworkers seem to have never used a spokeshave, don't seem to have seen one or if they have don't appreciate it's value as an essential in the toolbox.  I've always been a fan of this comfortable little tool, it's wonderful for finishing spoons and spatulas and all types of awkward edges.  Once you've mastered the adjustment of the blade it's beautiful the way it removes the perfect shaving for that lovely feel of smooth wood in the hand.

I was using my spokeshave just yesterday in the workshop finishing some spoons, spatulas etc and thinking what a marvellous and useful tool it was how everyone should have one!
James Krenov turned me onto this one perhaps back when he wrote articles for one of the woodworking magazines.  It’s a Stanley No 53 which I use with a one handed grip as he suggested. Also it’s got a little wheel for speedy, very accurate and fine blade adjustments.

Stanley No 53
This is my favourite Spokeshave, I probably use it everyday in my work and is always part of my travelling tool kit.

In my opinion, this is the way to hold it - using first finger and thumb and the little finger at the opposite end of the blade being careful not to clog the mouth with shavings.

Complete view of the under or business side of the Spokeshave where you can see the hinged sole.  It's essential to keep it sharp and as I've been using a fair bit of Sycamore in the last couple of weeks it needs sharpening more frequently than, say, Silver Birch or Hazel would need.

Spoonrise over Waltham Abbey

NB  Top tip is to hold the blade in mole grips for honing... 

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