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Nosed Carving Tools

I have been watching Indonisian carvers online recently and noticed that many of their tools have rounded ends (nosed) which seems to allow carving with less chance of the corners digging in, and allows for "rolling the tool along a cut line. I have seen some old tools that were also "nosed" that worked very well for some types of cuts. Many sites featuring traditional European style carving advocate shaping tools straight across and Mary really loves her sharp corners (for good reasons). I was wondering how many of you use rounded noses on some of your tools, when you found them most useful, and why you don't hear more about them in European style carving. I have reshaped a double-beveled chisel and it really seems to work very well for convex shapes.

Hi Michael,

There are certain times when these "rounded" corners come in very handy. Yes, like you said, the corners don't interfere. One design in particular was very helpful with this shape and that is bead molding. As you round over the bead, the "softened" corners of the gouge don't hit and gouge into the background. All the edge of the blade reaches the background at the same point because the tool is still slightly slanted when the cut is complete. Another time I use this is for the ball and claw foot. Getting into that web with a nice, rounded edge makes it so much easier. So, yes, they can be very helpful in certain situations. I have 5 or 6 antique gouges that came rounded and I just kept them that way.

Thanks Mary! It looks like I may be reshaping some of my tools in the near future to enhance my collection.