Carving and Whittling

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Knife Moves

Carving is done by holding the knife in a particular position. Use your thumb to steady your hand and grip the knife in the rest of your hand and draw it toward the thumb. (Be careful not to use your thumb to stop the blade. Ouch!) Deeper cuts should be made away from you, with the knife gripped in your whole hand (see the following figure). Some of the deeper cuts might best be made by a child while the wood is held in a vice. Use a cloth or some leather wrapped around the piece to keep the vice from crushing the wood.

Consult the diagram of the child whittling a bird out of wood in the Carved Boat Project.

You'll also need some rasps and files for finishing off your carving and smoothing out grooves. A rasp is a coarse file that has conical teeth. A file is a long narrow tool of steel or other metal that has a series of ridges or points on its surfaces for reducing or smoothing surfaces of metal, wood, and so on. You can make sanding sticks by covering wood dowels (a small, round wooden rod) of various diameters with sandpaper, using glue to hold the sandpaper in place.

Try our Carved Boat Project.

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More on: Crafts for Kids

Excerpted from The Complete Idiot's Guide to Crafts with Kids © 1998 by Georgene Lockwood. All rights reserved including the right of reproduction in whole or in part in any form. Used by arrangement with Alpha Books, a member of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.

To order this book visit the Idiot's Guide web site or call 1-800-253-6476.


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