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Thread: Quality carving tools at affordable price?

  1. #1
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    Quality carving tools at affordable price?

    I have been looking for good carving tools to begin carving, and came across Schaaf Tools.
    They seem too good to be true, but get excellent reviews from 2 professional carvers that have many years of experience and also have schools for wood carving. You tube videos reviews are out there.
    I know the members here say not to buy sets of tools or cheap tools, but these may just be the tools to start out with if money is an obstacle for anyone.
    Let me know if you have used these tools, or just thoughts on what you all think.

    Thanks, Mike

  2. #2
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    From the few that I saw, it's junk. You get what you pay for,

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Josko Catipovic View Post
    From the few that I saw, it's junk. You get what you pay for,

    In the reviews online by the carvers with much experience, and used these tools to complete a large carving project, they stated that the tools while not being as nice in appearance as ones that cost up to 5 times as much, they did hold an edge and performed at the same level, when it came to holding an edge and resharpening.
    That is why I asked if anyone has used these tools. And also to let carvers not as wealthy as others to maybe give them a try and respond.

  4. #4
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    Sorry if i was terse earlier, but we had to completely regrind the edges of all three tools we tried. I suppose one could look at it as saving money by buying blunt tools. If it's worth your while to regrind and then hone them before use, they could be a good deal.

  5. #5
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    `No problem Josko, It's hard not to over react sometimes.

    They do state in the ads on Amazon that if you do not wish to hone the edges of the tools, out of the box, then to not buy their tools.

    One of the wood carving teachers did bring this up, and demonstrated how to touch up a gouge on his pedestal grinder, with a simple fixture made of wood that he uses.

    I will try to find the video for others to see, if they are interested.

    Thanks for your reply.

  6. #6
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    Schaaf woodcarvcing tools evaluation, by The Carving Shop, on youtube is one of the reviews if anyone is interested.

  7. #7
    It wouldn't bother me if they came blunt, as long as they were good steel, had a handle that fit my hand, and were well balanced. I generally resharpen and reshape my carving tools anyway. And there's an adage in carving - "If you can't sharpen, you can't carve".

    You have to keep your tools sharp in order to do good work. And occasionally, you drop one and it always seems to hit edge first which requires some major resharpening.

    I power sharpen my carving tools, including power stropping, so it's not as much work as if I had to do it all by hand.

    My major objection to the tools is that they appear to only come as sets. Sets usually have some tools that you won't use, and once you get going, you want to add to your tools individually. It would be nice if they sold the tools individually. Maybe they do and I just didn't see it on the website.

    They look similar to the Pfeil carving tools and they appear to use the same Swiss marking system.

    Mike
    Go into the world and do well. But more importantly, go into the world and do good.

  8. #8
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    Mike, The Schaaf Co. has said they are thinking about selling individual tools in the future. They say they have listened to carvers in their research about which tools to put into sets. And have made sets accordingly. A hundred bucks for 12 tools sounds questionable, but then peoples experiences may help answer that question here.
    I am with you on the sharpening. It is something that we will all have to do anyway, so not too big a deal.
    The Carving Shop on Youtube has shown a fairly simple way to sharpen edges with a pedestal grinder and some paper cut to bevel angles to use as a guide.
    While his ways at testing chisel hardness with an automatic prick punch does not impress me too much, he does have much more experience then I do.
    Thanks for your opinion. It means something coming from an experienced carver like yourself.

  9. #9
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    Update?
    Did you get the set? Inquiring minds want to know........
    As you initially said, looks too good to be true, and I could spring for them given the above problems.

  10. #10
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    No I have not gotten them yet Kyle. Spring has gotten in the way of my wood working at this time.

    I will definitely post about the chisels if and when I get them though.

  11. #11
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    Thanks for the update!
    Living in Hawaii, I'm not sure what spring means. I see you're in cold country.....
    Are you more or less inclined to make the jump?
    I'm on the fence. My carving skills leave a lot to be desired and currently have 3 "good" chisels. Most are trash/cheapos. Wondering if I invest in a semi good set if that will help. Not tried sharpening carving tools yet. I hone and strop mine which is different than sharpen, from what I gather.

  12. #12
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    In my experience if you are just starting out and not used to sharpening this may not be the way to go...sharpening is another skill set to learn just like carving...if you try to learn carving with dull tools you will lose interest and may also hurt yourself...i havent been carving very long and started with a knife i swore was sharp...till i ran into a guy with experience that set me straight...i would have stopped by now for sure...just my 2 cents...remember to enjoy the ride...very satisfying!

  13. #13
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    Kyle, If you search for you tube videos of Schaaf Tools reviews there is a professional carver,"The Carving Shop", and he demonstrates how to sharpen carving chisels from Schaaf Tools.

    It is a fairly simple way using paper as a guide and a pedestal grinder with a wooden base for the tool.

    In another video by a professional wood carver, he carved a project with the Schaaf Tools and reviewed them in the process. The steel held up very well and the ergonamics were similar to the Pfeils in use.

    Both reviews seemed pretty good and similar in their regards to the tools.
    Good steel and heat treating,and the tools were formed well in regaurd to each tools use.

    If you do get them let us know what you think.

  14. I believe that learning to sharpen comes before learning to carve. What good are dull tools? Carving with them will instill bad habits.

  15. #15
    As to the idea of the Schaaf tools not coming carving sharp or with the right grind in the first place. None do in my opinion. I've rebevelled and sometimes reshaped every single (about 100) carving tool I've ever purchased. That includes Ashley Iles, Stubai, Pfiel, Henry Taylor, Dastra, Two Cheeries, Lamp, Master Carver, Stryi. The Stryi and Pfeil were the only ones that came decently sharp. In some cases the handles need a bit of work to be comfortable as well.

    Don't let how the tool comes dictate what you get. You'll need to fix it to carve anyway. Of course the best tools are European but I have a couple Chinese tools that while not up to the European in fit and finish have very good steel. Always buy the best YOU can afford.

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