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1 1/2 chisel for cheeks: japanese or western

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Forum topic by NeophyteGrant posted 04-17-2018 07:26 PM 1194 views 0 times favorited 8 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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NeophyteGrant

73 posts in 592 days


04-17-2018 07:26 PM

I want to try my hand at paring tenon cheeks. I have a router plane I use sometimes, and a face float for refining but I feel like I can do it all by hand with a chisel easier—just pop and pare to the gauge to start. I feel it’d be faster and less hassle than grabbing the router plane. I also figure I’ll use it for larger mortises, and I have a bench build with biiiggg mortises coming up.

I’d be lying if I don’t also want another chisel with my tax return.

So, it seems outside of butt chisels it’s narex, a Japanese brand, or blue spruce since they are the only makers that go that big. Narex is ok but once I went better steel I got hooked.

Ergo, Blue spruce vs. koyamaichi?

-- Bucktown, Chicago, IL


8 replies so far

View Loren's profile

Loren

10477 posts in 3731 days


#1 posted 04-17-2018 09:12 PM

You can try it out with a plane iron.

Paring isn’t as hard on edges as chopping. They
stay sharp for awhile if you don’t chop. If you
study the Japanese chisels you’ll notice you can
lay the back of the chisel down flat and the handle
clears the surface. Western chisels don’t typically
do that. It comes down to preference but it may
be something to consider if you plan on paring
wide tenons.

View builtinbkyn's profile

builtinbkyn

2620 posts in 1023 days


#2 posted 04-17-2018 09:46 PM

I have a 24mm Japanese paring chisel from Gramercy Tools. It has a long handle providing for good control. The neck is crooked slightly allowing it to stay flush to the cut. It cuts wood like butter and holds a wicked edge. I’m thinking of picking up one or two in other sizes. Link They have another brand as well.

-- Bill, Yo!......in Brooklyn & Steel City :)

View bandit571's profile

bandit571

20719 posts in 2766 days


#3 posted 04-17-2018 09:53 PM

Might check out a Timber Framer’s chisel…

-- A Planer? I'M the planer, this is what I use

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NeophyteGrant

73 posts in 592 days


#4 posted 04-17-2018 11:22 PM

Thanks guys. I like the canted handle.

I like western and it’s what I’ve been learning on but am an intrigued by the white steel over the A2 I have with lie nielsens (I bought a couple LNs and LVs to start my set) though worried about knowing the landscape. I know what I get with the blue spruce, tho it’s A2.

I think Japanese it is…

-- Bucktown, Chicago, IL

View Tim's profile

Tim

3812 posts in 2044 days


#5 posted 04-18-2018 12:58 PM

Have fun, you’re not going to find many of us to talk you out of a tool you want to buy.

View builtinbkyn's profile

builtinbkyn

2620 posts in 1023 days


#6 posted 04-18-2018 01:20 PM



Thanks guys. I like the canted handle.

I like western and it s what I ve been learning on but am an intrigued by the white steel over the A2 I have with lie nielsens (I bought a couple LNs and LVs to start my set) though worried about knowing the landscape. I know what I get with the blue spruce, tho it s A2.

I think Japanese it is…

- NeophyteGrant


The hollow grind on the back and the mix of steel make Japanese chisels very easy to flatten and sharpen. The long handle and offset of the blade provide good control. There’s plenty of videos online about prepping/sharpening Japanese chisels.

-- Bill, Yo!......in Brooklyn & Steel City :)

View rwe2156's profile

rwe2156

3034 posts in 1564 days


#7 posted 04-18-2018 01:26 PM

IMO nothing beats a router plane to achieve flat, uniformly parallel cheeks. For longer tenons, I use an auxilary base which extends to one side.

I use a large shoulder plane and/or block rabbet plane for fine tuning.

Either of these are accurate than a chisel, at least in my hands.

-- Everything is a prototype thats why its one of a kind!!

View NeophyteGrant's profile

NeophyteGrant

73 posts in 592 days


#8 posted 04-18-2018 03:36 PM

rwe: I feel you. I really like what I’ve been able to do with my router plane so far. My chiseling—even with practicing to gauge lines, having a flat back, I feel I still suck at not whacking something out of flat. I think I have to get better at setting up my piece in the vise to get better control, and mastering technique.

Tim: When I first developed the hubris to think I could build my own furniture, I started power, of course, for efficiency. That seemed sensible! Why would I let this sappy attachment to the past of hand tools get in the way! Then realized hand tools were indispensable for many tasks, followed by realizing I actually liked and preferred doing certain things by hand. Then realized that the mindfulness of working with the media—wood—so intimately helped me understand it better than throwing it at something carbide (though I love carbide too and can never break up)

Now, I’m to the point where I want to try different methods for the sake of learning as an end (I have the luxury of not doing it for production, as is apparent). And of course there are always those times something I don’t use often will get used.

Damn those free shipping promos that make me forget how to do math.

-- Bucktown, Chicago, IL

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