Shaving Horse

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Project by TreemanLarry posted 05-24-2010 02:52 AM 12227 views 15 times favorited 10 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Well….. Finally, Finally, Finally I made it. A Dumbhead Shaving Horse. It has taken way to long to pull the trigger on just doing it and this weekend I determined to get it done. This is a relatively easy project to execute with one exception. The axis hole for the Dumb head was the biggest challenge. I now see the merits of the ‘bridge head’ or english style or what ever you call it. (You know… this kind) Anyway, the challenge was drilling the axis hole straight through. I used to be good or lucky when it came to drilling long holes straight through things but I guess my luck ran out. I had to warble out the hole until it was about an 1/8th” bigger than my pin, kind of sloppy, but it’s all good. It’s 4’8” long, 12” wide, from the bottom of the bench to the floor is 20”, the bridge is 30 ” long, and the riser is 3.5” tall. The bench board, bridge board, and riser are ash. The legs, dumbhead, and footboard are reclaimed elm. As far as recommending which style to go with, I’m undecided about that just yet. I’m thinking about making the other style head to be able to switch back and forth. I’d say if you can use a big drill press you can get everything lined up to drill a good through hole.



-- Larry, Kentucky

10 comments so far

View RichardMu's profile


259 posts in 4016 days

#1 posted 05-24-2010 03:04 AM

Nice looking horse. I know you will have great time working with it. I made one with the two rails up the side but like the dumbhead design much better.

-- You will never build it unless you try. The second one always turns out better.

View a1Jim's profile


118162 posts in 4662 days

#2 posted 05-24-2010 03:21 AM

View Monty Queen's profile

Monty Queen

1595 posts in 4337 days

#3 posted 05-24-2010 04:16 AM

Wow great looking horse. Nice work.

-- Monty Q, Columbia, South Carolina.

View Kipster's profile


1076 posts in 4838 days

#4 posted 05-24-2010 04:48 AM

I want one, Nice job Treeman Larry

-- Kip Northern Illinois ( If you don't know where your goin any road will take you there) George Harrison

View mafe's profile


13188 posts in 4174 days

#5 posted 05-24-2010 01:28 PM

Really nice, good job.
I have been looking a lot on this, I have no idea for what I’ll use it, but it seems so wonderful simple and usefull, and then I have this romatic picture in my head to sit outside ad do some basic woodworking, with no noice but the blade against the wood must be close to meditative.
I study them for a while, and I can see they were used all over europe in the old days, and are all quite the same, with a few details changing.
Hope your post was the push that make me start soon, I even have the wood ready for it.
Do you have some plans you can post, perhaps just the main measures of lenghts and so.
Best thoughts,

-- MAD F, the fanatical rhykenologist and vintage architect.

View DocT's profile


109 posts in 4523 days

#6 posted 05-24-2010 04:16 PM

Nice looking horse! I made a similar one last year and posted it here on LJ. It was a replacement for the “bridge head” or “Bodger’s Horse” that I have had for years. Having used both, I can say that I prefer the dumbhead for ease of use. It seems quicker to put a piece into the horse or to flip the workpice end-for-end… I will say, however, that I am very intrigued by the bodger's horse made popular by Brian Boggs in Dec 99 Fine Woodworking. I saw where someone built a version from two-by material and claimed it only cost $15.


View michelletwo's profile


2795 posts in 4101 days

#7 posted 05-24-2010 05:21 PM

great horse. I made mine 20 yrs ago and it ain’t this pretty, but it has seen a ton of chair work. Thanks for sharing

View TreemanLarry's profile


12 posts in 4091 days

#8 posted 05-26-2010 01:29 AM

Thank you all for the complements.

Mafe, I’m sorry but I do no have any plans to post. To me that is part of the beauty of the project. I winged it. ;)


-- Larry, Kentucky

View dubsaloon's profile


623 posts in 3879 days

#9 posted 12-25-2010 07:29 AM

Nice work. I like it, got the hickory to build it with, well almost, the tree fell down and I was given it and a White Oak to do with as I please. Bow saw for Christmas will get it done.

-- The works of evil people are not the problem. It is the "Good" people standing by and watching not speaking up. Dubsaloon

View Schwieb's profile


1916 posts in 4546 days

#10 posted 01-07-2011 09:33 PM

That’s a really fein Schnitzelbank. My dad had one that he restored and gave demonstrations with at historical preservation gatherings.

-- Dr. Ken, Florida - Durch harte arbeit werden Träume wahr.

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