Barnsley Reproduction Build #4: Starting Chip Carving

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Blog entry by stevo_wis posted 11-07-2014 04:29 AM 2010 reads 0 times favorited 3 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 3: Laying out Chip Carving Part 4 of Barnsley Reproduction Build series Part 5: One Leg Carved, on to the Frame »

My last photos of my paper layout were hard to see, so I shot them again and have also included a practice piece to show what I am trying to accomplish. The triangles that are removed have no depth at the base of the triangle and the chip is removed down 1/8 at the apex.

I have done a little chip carving with a knife into soft material before. For this project however, since it is white oak and I wanted to make sure my lines were straight, i decided to chip carve with a pair of bench chisels. I used a wide chisel that just incises a shallow line across two of the squares. I was hoping that this would give a nice straight line on the diagonal and it worked quite well.

To actually carve out the triangle, i placed a 3/4 chisel in the incision and using a mallet drove straight down to the 1/8 depth at the apex and nothing at the base. I chiseled both sides and kept the chisel bevel to the waste side.
After the two sides are chiseled, I then gently push the chisel from the bottom with the chisel parallel to one of the triangle sides. I then repeat for the other side and clean up as needed.

1 1/4 hour later I had done one row of triangles. Only fifteen more to go and hopefully I will get faster, but I also dont want to make mistakes so I am taking my time. The photo doesnt show the 1/8 depth very well, but the chips are coming out nicely. After all the paper is removed I will go over for a final cleanup.

-- Stevo

3 comments so far

View greenwoodbodger's profile


2 posts in 1472 days

#1 posted 11-07-2014 05:49 PM

When carving oak, I have a problem with chip out are you doing anything extra to avoid this?

View stevo_wis's profile


127 posts in 3080 days

#2 posted 11-07-2014 09:43 PM

I haven’t done anything special to tame the chip out. On my practice piece, the remaining squares did chip a little and I think it was me just scraping too hard to get the paper off. I am not a really experienced carver so others may know better than me. I want this to be perfect if possible and the only thing I am doing is trying to keep the chisels really sharp and shaving just a little at a time. I would like to hear more about your ideas too. Good to see another bodger.

-- Stevo

View gizmodyne's profile


1780 posts in 4143 days

#3 posted 11-26-2014 10:33 PM

Looking good!

-- -John "Do I have to keep typing a smiley? Just assume it's a joke."

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