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How to Use a Drawknife

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In this video, you will learn how to use a drawknife in woodworking.

This video is part of a curriculum addressing newcomers to the field of woodworking.

For more on leveling a wooden surface, check out our videos on using bench planes, block planes, rebate and bullnose planes and spokeshaves.

Need to smooth a curved surface in your woodwork project? Help is at hand! This step-by-step video will show you how to use a drawknife to get a perfect finish every time.

Music - Gilles B

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In this video you will learn how to use a Drawknife.

A Drawknife is a traditional woodworking hand tool used to smooth down and carve wood surfaces by removing shavings.

It is pulled or "drawn" toward the user, hence the name.

The Drawknife consists of a long blade that tapers down on either side to form two tangs ending in handles.

The basic Drawknife has a straight blade, 6 inches to 10 inches.

long with a bevel on one side.

The handles are usually set at a slightly lower plane and at a right angle with the blade.

Clamp the workpiece on the table.

Hold the two handles of the Drawknife with the blade towards yourself.

Use a comfortable grip without letting your fingers get in the way of the blade and work effortlessly and cleanly.

The Drawknife is commonly used flat-side-down as this delivers a finer cut.

However, it may also be used bevel down for more aggressive slicing, where the bevel acts as a slide and fulcrum used to direct the angle and depth of a cut.

(((( The Drawknife requires technique that combines strength with patience. ))))

It is mostly used for removing many layers at a time, with practice and care it is possible to shape even elaborate curves with accuracy.

For very rapid removal of stock make a deep cut and lever upward till it snaps.

Cutting too deep may damage the work piece and Drawknife blade.

For finer work, make thin shavings with small strokes.

Gradually even the plane, uniformly and layer by layer.

Draw Knives work best with straight-grained woods.

Practice different cuts, from shallow plane-like shavings to rougher work.

You have now learnt how to use a Drawknife.


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