Jump to content

Welcome to Model Ship World
Register now to gain access to all of our features. Once registered and logged in, you will be able to create topics, post replies to existing threads, give reputation to your fellow members, get your own private messenger, post status updates, manage your profile and so much more. If you already have an account, login here - otherwise create an account for free today!
Photo

Simple carving techniques for first-timers using a chisel and knives


  • Please log in to reply
46 replies to this topic

#1
Chuck

Chuck

    Administrator

  • Administrators
  • 7,318 posts
  • LocationRutherford Nj

Coming soon....


  • catopower likes this

Chuck Passaro - MSW Admin 

 

Current build - HMS Winchelsea - POB scratch build

                            HM Cutter Cheerful - POB scratch build

       Royal Barge - POF scratch

 

www.syrenshipmodelcompany.com

 


#2
Chuck

Chuck

    Administrator

  • Administrators
  • 7,318 posts
  • LocationRutherford Nj

As I mentioned earlier...I am just a beginner with carving.  But to get this group started, allow me the opportunity to describe the 4 basic cuts or techniques I used to carve the crown cipher and the other designs.  This is what I covered with my local club before we undertook the actual carving.  Because the pieces are so small, I used Playdoh to demonstrate the four cuts  we were going to start with.  It allowed us to demonstrate in larger scale so everyone could see it.

 

Once I am done with cut one....please do reply and let me know if this method to describe the cuts translates well enough for the web.  If you guys think this is a good method I will delete your replies and continue with the remaining three.....

 

So let me begin.

 

To start here is an exampled of the same cipher on a contemporary model.    It very plainly carved.  And its gilded.

 

transomqanne.jpg

 

Here is my first try also gilded.

 

guildedcipher.jpg

 

 

When you download and print the design patterns here

 

Attached File  scaledecorationschart.pdf   63.82KB   87 downloads

 

You will notice on the crown design below, that I added some lines and arrows....the short red lines indicate where we have stop cuts...to be explained later.   The dark vertical lines show the wood grain.  The arrows indicate suggested direction for slicing the laser char from the sides of your carving.  Either with a # 11 blade or chisel.  I used a #11 blade.  I recommend you indicate the grain direction on the enlarged designs before you begin...and also draw in where you will place your stop cuts to establish depth....and arrows to indicate what direction you will slice and carve in.  Its just good practice and a great exercise before the wood shavings start flying.  As you can see I only did this for some of the cuts on the crown cipher......feel free to fill in the others on your design sheet before you begin.

 

cipherdrawing.jpg

 

Note the left leg of the monogram.  It has an arrow in green.  This is used to demonstrate the importance in cut direction with your chisel or blade.

 

The playdough piece below represents this same part of the crown cipher.  Notice the grooves I added to represent the wood grain.

 

slice1.jpg

 

When you are slicing with your chisel or blade....I watched everyone in my club group begin.  It is logical that everyone would start with the design right side up.....and start with this leg of the design.  The goal when starting is just to slice away the laser char from the sides of the piece.  Most started slicing off small shavings in the direction shown below.  I did this also.

 

Its seems like the obvious way to do it.  But guess what happened?

 

slice2.jpg

 

The blade caught on the grain and either split the leg off entirely or creating a large chip along the grain direction which ruined the piece.....time to start again.  Can you see how this would happen?

 

Some also decided not to slice or chisel away the char as they were shaping the edges.  They decided to scrape it off with the edge of the #11 blade.  Not only did this make a horrible noise...I wouldnt recommend this approach.  It leaves a dirty and rough surface that wont take a finish well.  It just doesnt look good.  Since we are trying to learn carving its best to try cutting or chiseling.  Very tiny thin shavings....dont try to remove too much.  This takes time to do.  Its very delicate work.

 

Instead

 

Slice in the other direction as shown below.

 

slice3.jpg

 

This may seem obvious to most but it is well worth mentioning.   This completes the first type of basic cut used on these pieces.  Its real beginner stuff but hopefully useful.   Analyze your piece for the wood grain and its direction and pre-plan the direction of your cuts to avoid splitting and ruining your piece.

 

You can do this ahead of time by drawing arrows on your printed design sheet. 

 

Let me know guys if this way of explaining the four basic cuts works....if it does....I will continue on with basic cut number two.....the stop cut.  God I love the smell of playdoh!!!!!! :)

 

Chuck


  • Ryland Craze, realworkingsailor, luigi and 22 others like this

Chuck Passaro - MSW Admin 

 

Current build - HMS Winchelsea - POB scratch build

                            HM Cutter Cheerful - POB scratch build

       Royal Barge - POF scratch

 

www.syrenshipmodelcompany.com

 


#3
mtaylor

mtaylor

    Bilge Rat

  • SPECIAL CONTRIBUTOR
  • 14,241 posts
  • LocationMedford, OR

I like what you're showing, Chuck.  Simple basic steps.


  • Ryland Craze, WackoWolf, AntonyUK and 3 others like this

Mark

"The shipwright is slow, but the wood is patient." - me


Current Build:

Licorne - 1755 from Hahn Plans (Scratch) Version 2.0

Past Builds:
Triton Cross-Section
USS Constellaton (kit bashed to 1854 Sloop of War (Gallery) Build Log
Wasa (Gallery)


Member of the Nautical Research Guild


#4
Chuck

Chuck

    Administrator

  • Administrators
  • 7,318 posts
  • LocationRutherford Nj

Yes its certainly another method.....I dont care for it...

 

But everyone should try both or a combination of the two.  Select which one works best for you.

 

Chuck


  • mtaylor, WackoWolf, src and 3 others like this

Chuck Passaro - MSW Admin 

 

Current build - HMS Winchelsea - POB scratch build

                            HM Cutter Cheerful - POB scratch build

       Royal Barge - POF scratch

 

www.syrenshipmodelcompany.com

 


#5
KeithW

KeithW
  • Members
  • 1,119 posts
  • LocationMelbourne, Australia

Thank you Chuck! You should collate these articles and put it in the database. 


  • mtaylor, WackoWolf, Canute and 1 other like this
Regards, Keith

gallery_1526_572_501.jpg 2007 (completed): HMS Bounty - Artesania Latina  gallery_1526_579_484.jpg 2013 (completed): Viking Ship Drakkar - Amati  post-1526-0-02110200-1403452426.jpg 2014 (completed): HMS Bounty Launch - Model Shipways
post-1526-0-63099100-1404175751.jpg Current: HMS Royal William - Euromodel

#6
Chuck

Chuck

    Administrator

  • Administrators
  • 7,318 posts
  • LocationRutherford Nj

Once its all done..probably....Thanks


  • mtaylor, WackoWolf, src and 3 others like this

Chuck Passaro - MSW Admin 

 

Current build - HMS Winchelsea - POB scratch build

                            HM Cutter Cheerful - POB scratch build

       Royal Barge - POF scratch

 

www.syrenshipmodelcompany.com

 


#7
Jack12477

Jack12477

    Hard water sailor

  • Members
  • 1,352 posts
  • LocationSaugerties, Mid-Hudson Valley/Catskill Region, NY

Another way to explain grain is to think of it as microscopic hollow tubes (it actually is) bundled tightly together and running in different directions along the tree trunk/limbs. Now think of those old straw brooms from grandma's day; then think of the wood grain (tubes) as the individual straws in the broom similarly bundled together into a tight bundle. Now imagine your hand is the knife blade; running your hand down the broom starting at the handle and going in the direction of the bottom, your hand runs (cuts) smoothly over the straw (grain). Now try running your hand over the broom starting at the bottom (working end) and moving upward towards the handle, your hand (knife) digs into the straw and can't move smoothly along without breaking off chucks of straw. Grain works the same way. 

 

When you carve you want to cut with or across the grain and never against the grain. As Chuck pointed out, when you cut against the grain bad things happen.

 

BTW, Chuck - like the playdo example.


Edited by Jack12477, 17 October 2016 - 11:20 PM.

  • Chuck, Ryland Craze, mtaylor and 4 others like this

Jack
 
"No one is as smart as all of us"
---------------------------------------------

Current build: MS Willie L Bennett
Completed build log(s): MS 18th Century Longboat , AL Marie Jeanne
Gallery: AL Swift , AL Armed Virginia Sloop, AL Santisima Trinidad Captain's Launch , 18th Century Longboat , AL Marie Jeanne
In dry-dock: AL 1798 US Constellation,  MS Picket Boat,  Dumas Donzi Z65 Tournament Fisherman (R/C)

Other: 1912 Hudson River Ice Yacht Manhasset - RESTORATION - Scale = Full Size, Relief Carving for Model Ships


#8
Jack12477

Jack12477

    Hard water sailor

  • Members
  • 1,352 posts
  • LocationSaugerties, Mid-Hudson Valley/Catskill Region, NY

I like what you're showing, Chuck.  Simple basic steps.

 

Me too, Chuck


  • mtaylor, src, Canute and 1 other like this

Jack
 
"No one is as smart as all of us"
---------------------------------------------

Current build: MS Willie L Bennett
Completed build log(s): MS 18th Century Longboat , AL Marie Jeanne
Gallery: AL Swift , AL Armed Virginia Sloop, AL Santisima Trinidad Captain's Launch , 18th Century Longboat , AL Marie Jeanne
In dry-dock: AL 1798 US Constellation,  MS Picket Boat,  Dumas Donzi Z65 Tournament Fisherman (R/C)

Other: 1912 Hudson River Ice Yacht Manhasset - RESTORATION - Scale = Full Size, Relief Carving for Model Ships


#9
Chuck

Chuck

    Administrator

  • Administrators
  • 7,318 posts
  • LocationRutherford Nj

I found that with a fresh sharp blade it is possible to cut cross grain as Janos suggest but slicing the edge there seems to cause a high probability of the blade catching on the grain.  At least with my attempts.  And believe me , as a complete beginner I am just getting familiar with the whole thing.  But this is why we started this group....

 

It is meant to explore all methods with all tools...rotary included.    Everyone will have their favorite.   I am curious what everyone will experience and what their opinions and preferences will be.  

 

So I urge all of you to start one of these mini-carving logs here when you get your carving blanks.  And let everyone know how it went.


  • Ryland Craze, mtaylor, WackoWolf and 3 others like this

Chuck Passaro - MSW Admin 

 

Current build - HMS Winchelsea - POB scratch build

                            HM Cutter Cheerful - POB scratch build

       Royal Barge - POF scratch

 

www.syrenshipmodelcompany.com

 


#10
Jack12477

Jack12477

    Hard water sailor

  • Members
  • 1,352 posts
  • LocationSaugerties, Mid-Hudson Valley/Catskill Region, NY

I have to agree with you, Chuck. I've had the same experience with grain and a knife. Cross grain or with the grain, sharp knife cuts cleanly but against the grain it digs in and causes problems.  And all the guys in my club with 20 plus years carving teach the same thing - in fact the example I gave is from one of their classes. The predominant choice among the carvers I know is basswood, followed by butternut. There's other species but those are the two I'm familiar with.

 

Rotary cutters are a whole different ballgame. Janos is correct, grain doesn't much matter to a rotary cutter.  But only 2 guys in my club are rotary cutters the rest use a knife or chisel.

 

Edit: I should mention that the best basswood for us (USA) comes from the American midwest - mostly Wisconsin area. Cannot speak to overseas areas.


Edited by Jack12477, 17 October 2016 - 11:49 PM.

  • Ryland Craze, mtaylor, WackoWolf and 2 others like this

Jack
 
"No one is as smart as all of us"
---------------------------------------------

Current build: MS Willie L Bennett
Completed build log(s): MS 18th Century Longboat , AL Marie Jeanne
Gallery: AL Swift , AL Armed Virginia Sloop, AL Santisima Trinidad Captain's Launch , 18th Century Longboat , AL Marie Jeanne
In dry-dock: AL 1798 US Constellation,  MS Picket Boat,  Dumas Donzi Z65 Tournament Fisherman (R/C)

Other: 1912 Hudson River Ice Yacht Manhasset - RESTORATION - Scale = Full Size, Relief Carving for Model Ships


#11
Nirvana

Nirvana
  • Members
  • 1,820 posts
  • LocationConnell, WA

I like what you're showing, Chuck.  Simple basic steps.

Love it!


  • mtaylor, Jack12477, Canute and 1 other like this

Respectfully

 

Per aka Dr. Per

 

Ship modeling is a long lesson in patience - Me

It's better to get something done later than never

 

Denial is futile, MSW is here to stay.

 

 Therapy for Shipaholics

 

Finished: T37, BB Marie Jeanne - located on a shelf in Sweden

Current: America by Constructo, Harley almost a Harvey , 18th Century Longboat, Solö Ruff

National Research Guild Member - 'Taint a hobby if you gotta hurry


#12
Chuck

Chuck

    Administrator

  • Administrators
  • 7,318 posts
  • LocationRutherford Nj

For our needs basswood is problematic...I did carve one of the crowns in cherry but using castello worked much better.   I have not tried pear.   I have tried Yellow cedar and that works beautifully.  Carves like butter.  No grain at all.  Its a softer wood but very strong.  Hold a clean crisp egde.

 

I also tried Jelatung and Tupalo (I think thats how you spell it)  Not good for our small carvings though.   Way too soft.

 

But Alaskan Yellow cedar has possibilities.   I Loved it so much I actually started building another barge with it.   Here is a sneak peek.  In comparison with Cherry version.  If you can get some its worth a try.  The entire backbone is done in alaskan yellow cedar.

 

 

AYCparts.jpg


  • Ryland Craze, luigi, mtaylor and 13 others like this

Chuck Passaro - MSW Admin 

 

Current build - HMS Winchelsea - POB scratch build

                            HM Cutter Cheerful - POB scratch build

       Royal Barge - POF scratch

 

www.syrenshipmodelcompany.com

 


#13
WackoWolf

WackoWolf
  • Members
  • 2,734 posts
  • LocationRhode Island

This is nice. Glad I found this topic. Thanks Chuck


  • Chuck, Ryland Craze, mtaylor and 3 others like this
Wacko
Joe :D

Go MSW :) :)

#14
Jack12477

Jack12477

    Hard water sailor

  • Members
  • 1,352 posts
  • LocationSaugerties, Mid-Hudson Valley/Catskill Region, NY

Yes, tupalo is one of the other woods used by the club members. Another is Southern Yellow pine; I tried it but without much success but more experienced carver than me have gotten some pretty good results.  Basswood is good for larger figures, cuts well, tight grain but none of my fellow club members had tried to use it at the small scale you're trying.  Now that you mentioned it; yes, Cherry is another our experienced members have tried.   Me ! I'm still learning even tho I've been "practicing" since 2008. ;)

 

You model looks great ! And that Alaskan cedar looks nice also. Have to check it out. I have a club meeting this Thursday night, will consult with the more experienced members and see what they have to offer.


  • Ryland Craze, mtaylor, Uncle Si and 2 others like this

Jack
 
"No one is as smart as all of us"
---------------------------------------------

Current build: MS Willie L Bennett
Completed build log(s): MS 18th Century Longboat , AL Marie Jeanne
Gallery: AL Swift , AL Armed Virginia Sloop, AL Santisima Trinidad Captain's Launch , 18th Century Longboat , AL Marie Jeanne
In dry-dock: AL 1798 US Constellation,  MS Picket Boat,  Dumas Donzi Z65 Tournament Fisherman (R/C)

Other: 1912 Hudson River Ice Yacht Manhasset - RESTORATION - Scale = Full Size, Relief Carving for Model Ships


#15
WackoWolf

WackoWolf
  • Members
  • 2,734 posts
  • LocationRhode Island

Has anyone tried yellow heart?


  • mtaylor and Canute like this
Wacko
Joe :D

Go MSW :) :)

#16
Chuck

Chuck

    Administrator

  • Administrators
  • 7,318 posts
  • LocationRutherford Nj

Too yellow...a very obnoxious yellow for my tastes... also too hard for me to work with.  I couldnt imagine carving it.   

 

 

But before we go to far....can we move the discussion of wood choices to the other "tool and wood" topic in this group area.  This way it will be where everyone will eventually look for it.   Its too easy to get off track as I am guilty of here too.  

 

See you over in that topic....I want to keep this one to the carving techniques as much as possible....


  • Ryland Craze, mtaylor, WackoWolf and 4 others like this

Chuck Passaro - MSW Admin 

 

Current build - HMS Winchelsea - POB scratch build

                            HM Cutter Cheerful - POB scratch build

       Royal Barge - POF scratch

 

www.syrenshipmodelcompany.com

 


#17
capnharv2

capnharv2
  • Members
  • 788 posts
  • LocationPuget Sound

Interesting comment on AYC Chuck. I carved numberboards out of it for our real boat and love the way it works (other than the smell).

 

Besides it being easy to carve,(and most modelmakers don't have this problem) Alaska Yellow Cedar is very rot resistant. I hope to make trailboards for our Friendship Sloop one day, and that's the wood I'll be using.

 

Thanks

 

Harvey


  • mtaylor, WackoWolf, Jack12477 and 2 others like this

#18
Beef Wellington

Beef Wellington
  • Members
  • 1,525 posts
  • LocationConnecticut

Very interested in where this goes, great idea for a topic.


  • Chuck, mtaylor, WackoWolf and 4 others like this

Cheers,
 
Jason


"But if you ask the reason of this, many will be found who never thought about it"
 
In the shipyard:

HMS Snake (c1797: Cruizer Class, ship rigged sloop)

HMS Jason (c1794: Artois Class 38 gun frigate)


#19
toms10

toms10
  • Members
  • 311 posts
  • LocationConnecticut, USA

Eventually I will need to carve for my current build.  I will definitely be following this as I have yet to carve anything but a Thanksgiving Day turkey.   :unsure:  :wacko: Thanks for putting this together Chuck.

Tom


  • mtaylor, Jack12477 and Canute like this

Attitude is the difference between ordeal and adventure.

 
Current build: HMS Leopard, scratch 1:85
Completed build:  Constellation AL Kit, scale - 1:85


#20
druxey

druxey
  • Members
  • 4,785 posts
  • LocationNiagara on the Lake, Ontario, Canada

With all due respect to rotary cutting folk, I can always tell that if a piece wasn't carved. You simply cannot get clean, faceted cuts with a rotary burrs that you can with a properly honed carving tool. But, each to their own.


  • Chuck, Ryland Craze, tlevine and 7 others like this




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users

Welcome GUEST to the Model Ship World Community.
Please LOGIN or REGISTER to use all of our feautures.