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How to Use a Marking Knife

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This video will show you how to layout your woodwork using a marking knife.

This video will show you how to layout your woodwork using a marking knife.

This tutorial is part of a series that focuses on helping aspirants build a solid foundation in woodworking.

If you wish to learn more, watch the rest of our series on Woodworking.

Learning to use a marking knife? Help is at hand! This step-by-step video will take you through everything you need to know to use a marking knife safely and effectively in your woodwork projects.

Music - Gilles B

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In this video you will learn how to use a Marking Knife.

A marking knife is a layout tool used to scribe a line into a workpiece.

The knife's edge severs fibres, producing a demarcation.

This helps make accurate cuts that can be followed with a hand saw or chisel.

The tools and materials you will need are a workpiece, scrap wood, a marking knife, a ruler, a try square and a pencil.

Marking knives have a steel blade with a bevel that is usually on one side.

The other side is flat so the tip is flush with the edge that guides the marking.

The handle is usually made of hardwood or plastic.

The Marking Knife can be held as you would grip a pen, or, as you would grip a regular knife.

Remember to keep your fingertips away from the sharp edges.

Watch your fingers.

Some marking knives have a spear-point with a bevel on either side.

This helps mark a line in both directions.

To mark a line along which to saw, first use a ruler to measure the distance from the edge that needs to be shortened.

Watch the video How to Use a Ruler.

Mark both ends of the line.

Place the cutting edge of the marking knife in line with the measured mark.

Holding the Marking knife in position, remove the ruler and place it alongside the blade so that it extends from one end of the cut to the other, at a right angle with the edge.

Now, scribe a line along the edge of the ruler.

Trace the line with a pencil to make it more visible.

A marking knife is generally used when laying out across the grain and avoided when laying out with the grain as the blade tends to follow the fibres, resulting in inaccurate lines.

You should be able to control the knife without a death grip.

Watch your fingers.

To create a starting point for the saw, place the blade against the edge where the scribed line ends and roll it down to create a groove.

You have now learnt how to use a marking knife.


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