Beginners Chisels - recommendations?

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Forum topic by kentgs posted 10-25-2011 09:03 PM 3721 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View kentgs's profile


9 posts in 2407 days

10-25-2011 09:03 PM

Topic tags/keywords: chisel question

Hello All! First post, here goes…

I am a novice wood worker with some modest tools, and would like to get some nice chisels. I don’t want to spend a fortune on tools that a professional would get, but I don’t want junk either. I want to enjoy the tools I have…

SO, I’m looking at a set of 7 Bevel-Edge Chisels (1/4” to 1-1/2”), with a box for $125.00 from Lee Valley. I like this set because it gives me a nice place to keep them (box) and a wide range of choices (7 chisels), and I’ve heard Japanese steel is good, however I don’t know if that applies to this set or not.

Can anyone comment on this set of chisels, or recommend an alternative?


4 replies so far

View Brandon's profile


4152 posts in 2947 days

#1 posted 10-25-2011 09:09 PM

I can’t comment on the chisel set you mentioned (link here), but the Narex chisels, also available through Lee Valley, are a pretty good value. I have a four of them and use them pretty frequently and would recommend them to others.

-- "hold fast to that which is good"

View Arminius's profile


304 posts in 3798 days

#2 posted 10-25-2011 09:56 PM

That was my first set, and they are quite good. However, if you do a lot of handwork the handles are both a little too short and the material is not that comfortable. I use them more for carpentry now, I ‘upgraded’ to the Narex chisels that Brandon mentions, though in fact the Narex bevel edge set is cheaper.

Not sure how I would compare the two steels used, but no complaints about either.

View crank49's profile


4030 posts in 2966 days

#3 posted 10-25-2011 10:21 PM

I recently got my first Narex chisels and I was extremely pleased with the quality and the price.

You mentioned you want the wide range of sizes and you are looking at Lee Valley already so check out the Narex 10 piece, bevel edge set for $120.

If I didn’t already have three sets of chisels I’d be getting this set in a heartbeat.

You can always make a box to put them in.

View Loren's profile


10378 posts in 3643 days

#4 posted 10-25-2011 10:53 PM

Those are not Japan chisels. They may be well-forged, but they are
not laminated like proper Japan chisels, which take a keen edge but
are stout and not suitable for all work.

The price seems high to me for a set of plastic-handled chisels, but they
are no doubt decent at the least. Lee Valley always gives great value
for the dollar spent in my experience.

Sellers have been closing out old stock of Marples split-proof chisels in
sets for as little as $7 each on ebay. I got a set of 8. They may be
all gone now.

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