Carvers and Pyrographers - I need your advice!!

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Blog entry by lightweightladylefty posted 07-05-2010 08:13 PM 2472 reads 0 times favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I want to purchase a wood-burner for my husband for his birthday, but I don’t know what to get him. Right now he has two very, very cheap ones with no heat settings. (They were probably both under $10 a piece many years ago!)

I don’t want to spend a fortune but I’d like it to be good enough so he could do all the fine lines, etc. that he would like to do on his carvings. He also has been reproducing photographs on box lids for the grandkids. He does a very good job with what he has, but I know a better tool would give him even better results.

What would you recommend for a middle-of-the-road (preferably under $100) set up?

-- Jesus is the ONLY reason for ANY season.

7 comments so far

View Bearpie's profile


2601 posts in 2982 days

#1 posted 07-05-2010 08:59 PM

You might think about this one and you can get it from I have the larger one and it is excellent.

Detail Master “Dagger III”

Erwin, Jacksonville, FL

-- Erwin, Jacksonville, FL

View hObOmOnk's profile


1381 posts in 4092 days

#2 posted 07-05-2010 09:00 PM

I use a RazerTip from Lee Valley.

-- 温故知新

View Cindy's profile


14 posts in 3391 days

#3 posted 07-19-2010 06:51 AM

You should look at Tree Line. They have quite a good selection. I have a RazerTip and it is really good with a wide range of temperatures and many different tips, plus you can make your own, which is really nice and allows very different patterns.

-- Cindy

View Jordan's profile


1400 posts in 3089 days

#4 posted 07-25-2010 05:57 AM

I’m sorry I didn’t see this before. I use the Razertip one as well.


View Moron's profile


5032 posts in 3858 days

#5 posted 07-25-2010 06:14 AM


-- "Good artists borrow, great artists steal”…..Picasso

View lightweightladylefty's profile


3235 posts in 3677 days

#6 posted 07-25-2010 06:51 AM

Thanks to everyone for your comments. Unfortunately, most came a little too late, but the Lord’s timing is always perfect!

I did quite a bit of research on here and on other sites. On this site, I looked at woodburnings and chose the ones that looked the best (to my eye), then read through the LumberJock’s postings to see if they said what kind of woodburner they used. I came across Danette Smith and found that she used an Optima.

After reading through reviews of the Optima, Razertip, Nibsburner, Detail Master, and Colwood, I finally decided to buy my husband the Optima I dual woodburner and two pens. It was more money than I had planned to spend, but less expensive than the others, and if Danette can produce that fantastic work, then I figured it would be good enough for my husband, too.

With that decision made, I typed Optima I Dual Woodburner into the search engine and up came a Craigslist ad for the Optima I Dual Woodburner with 4 Pens (round skew, 1/16” ball tip, spear point shader, and hair pen) for $65.00 (with extremely light usage). The owner in Michigan was willing to ship it to me and I received it in time for my husband’s birthday.

He has been delighted with it and his practicing looks pretty wonderful already. (He was also delighted with my frugality.)

-- Jesus is the ONLY reason for ANY season.

View Jordan's profile


1400 posts in 3089 days

#7 posted 07-25-2010 05:20 PM

That’s good – my problem is that I don’t do research and usually buy the first thing that looks like it would work – I’m on my second Razertip now but I will look into the Optima before I buy next time.

The foot pedal runs continuously as long as your foot is on it. It doesn’t have a start and stop function like you mentioned.


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