Shop Built Hand Tools #7: Scratch Stocks - I'm sold

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Blog entry by USCJeff posted 11-16-2011 04:52 PM 2810 reads 2 times favorited 4 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 6: Guess and check method taking some time Part 7 of Shop Built Hand Tools series Part 8: Thin-Ripping Saddle »

I’ve been collecting and bookmarking scratch stock ideas for a while now and it never quite made it to the top of the list. I decided to give it a go last night and found them about as simple to make as a hand tool can be. The picture below is pretty self explanatory as to what’s what. Each stock is about 5.5” x 2.5” x 1.25”. I went about as cheap as possible with some construction grade pine. I made two as I read conflicting reviews on how to secure the irons and what hardware was more favorable. I did both and found both work without fuss. I prefer the wing nuts for simplicity, but the 1” screws hold it firm as well. A few details to notice. The long arm is rounded on the bottom so that it can rock and allow you to find the angle that is smoothest. I was lazy and used a round over bit and ran the bearing right into the handle. Functionally no issue, but lazy. The kerf was done on a band saw but I suppose s fine handsaw or the like would get it done.

The irons are the make or break factor on this one. I show two of several I made in the picture. The chamfer (larger one) iron was a scrap from a card scraper. It is positioned for an aggressive cut which isn’t a great idea, but lets the picture show it a bit better. The tiny beading iron was from a metal cutting jig saw blade. I find they are’t quite wide enough for many of the things you’ll want to shape. I like the card scraper, handsaw, reciprocating saw blade route more so for that reason. It’s very possible to make a profile on the other side of the iron as well to double the options without any more irons to keep around. Easy to shape these. A angle grinder or a cut off tool will get the bulk done. File it to shape and it’s ready.

-- Jeff, South Carolina

4 comments so far

View dub560's profile


615 posts in 2942 days

#1 posted 11-17-2011 05:08 AM

Looks good..demo please

-- Life is enjoyable especially when you borrow from people

View tom427cid's profile


294 posts in 2499 days

#2 posted 11-17-2011 06:16 AM

First tool I made was a scratch stock-still use it.
I might suggest that as time goes on that you use a close grained hardwood. It will stand up to a lot of use.
As well as the contact surface takes a nice polish-makes for smoother operation.

-- "certified sawdust maker"

View Dennisgrosen's profile


10880 posts in 3144 days

#3 posted 11-18-2011 12:26 AM

thanks for the info and sharing them :-)
I still have to make one but I think its a tool that deserve an renaissance in woodworking
and they will if people wuold see they can benefit from both powertools and handtools

take care

View USCJeff's profile


1063 posts in 4097 days

#4 posted 11-21-2011 05:15 AM

No doubt, Tom. The pine will do what pine does and not take any abuse without consequence. The inevitable dents in the wood will make a bumpy ride before too long. The better plan is to use (like you mentioned) a tight hard species. Hard Maple has been my go-to in most wooden tool making things I’ve done. Takes abuse and moves very little. I’ve had great one’s with Purple Heart as well. The local store ran into a ton of Purple Heart and sold it dirt cheap. Don’t care for Purple, but it’s one of the densest I’ve used.

-- Jeff, South Carolina

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