Balancing Dragon 2

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Project by Druid posted 12-08-2017 07:06 AM 3622 views 0 times favorited 28 comments Add to Favorites Watch

As a followup to my other Balancing Dragon, I decided to carve another one, BUT without using any of the gouges or tools that I had used on the first Dragon.
Instead, I wanted to see whether or not I could do a similar carving while using only my new Flexcut KN50 Sloyd Knife. At first, I mistakenly assumed that the length of the knife blade might be too long to let me create the under-wing curves. I was wrong. The beautiful curve of the cutting edge turned out to do the job very well, and you can see (in photo 2) that there was no risk of damaging either the leading or trailing edges of the wings while I was shaping the curves. The Sloyd turned out to be a really top quality tool that is comfortable to use, and perfectly honed right out of the package. There are going to be more carvings coming from this fine knife!
As for the carving itself, I also made a change in the plan. The first Dragon had some small counterweights inserted into the leading edges of the wings in order to have the carving balance properly. For this Dragon, I decided to do without the weights, and I compensated by giving the wings a slightly more aggressive forward angle, as well as making the tail more slender to lighten the rear weight. Let’s call it a fun experiment to play around with the original design. I’ll have to see what I decide to try on number 3.
If anyone wants to try a similar carving, I have to mention that it will take a bit of extra patience to maintain the balance. I would suggest that you establish where you want the balance point to be, and insert a small, short section of a pin there. Once you start roughing out, keep in mind that you will have to balance both the front to back, and side to side, simultaneously. As you get closer to achieving the balance on the pin, start taking off finer shavings to gradually fine tune the “flight” position that you want.
The wood used was Poplar. The concept came from seeing one of these that had been done by another carver, about 10 years ago, in the Toronto area. Unfortunately, I don’t know his/her name.
Thanks for looking, comments welcome.

-- John, British Columbia, Canada

28 comments so far

View Ivan's profile


17050 posts in 4153 days

#1 posted 12-08-2017 07:55 AM

It realy looks like it will fly away any moment, pretty cool 3D carving.

-- Ivan, Croatia, Wooddicted

View robscastle's profile


8297 posts in 3490 days

#2 posted 12-08-2017 09:51 AM


The dragon looks to be a result of some very skillful carving to say the least.
I went looking through your blogs to get a better understanding on how you did it.
I know if it was me the fingers would all have band aids on them by the time I finished!

-- Regards Rob

View Bob Collins's profile

Bob Collins

2847 posts in 4969 days

#3 posted 12-08-2017 10:48 AM

Great piece of carving John, very nice shapes on the wings and tail. Well done and will wait for the third one.

-- RIP Bob C, Australia. Your best teacher is your last mistake.

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

9239 posts in 4206 days

#4 posted 12-08-2017 11:45 AM

I love it! It is really beautiful! :)

-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs ( Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"

View Redoak49's profile


5418 posts in 3274 days

#5 posted 12-08-2017 12:11 PM

Excellent work …..great carving and interesting balance

View Andrek's profile


655 posts in 3195 days

#6 posted 12-08-2017 12:13 PM

beautifull work, well done,

-- andrek

View BobWemm's profile


3047 posts in 3212 days

#7 posted 12-08-2017 12:36 PM

Love it. Great job.

-- Bob, Western Australia, The Sun came up this morning, what a great start to the day. Now it's up to me to make it even better. I've cut this piece of wood 4 times and it's still too damn short.

View lew's profile


13442 posts in 5041 days

#8 posted 12-08-2017 01:29 PM

Beautiful carving, John!

I always envy folks who can find forms hidden inside of pieces of wood.

-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

View shipwright's profile


8760 posts in 4084 days

#9 posted 12-08-2017 02:10 PM

Nice one John.
Now that’s a look of cool concentration!

-- Paul M ..............the early bird may get the worm but it’s the second mouse that gets the cheese!

View helluvawreck's profile


32122 posts in 4152 days

#10 posted 12-08-2017 02:12 PM

You did a beautiful job on this dragon. It’s a very nice project.

helluvawreck aka Charles

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

27002 posts in 4391 days

#11 posted 12-08-2017 02:22 PM

WOW…..........beautiful work, John.!!!!!!!!!!!!

Cheers, Jim

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

View Charlie Kilian's profile

Charlie Kilian

86 posts in 1903 days

#12 posted 12-08-2017 03:36 PM

I had to click through just to confirm it was really made out of wood. Amazing work. Well done.

View bushmaster's profile


4148 posts in 3568 days

#13 posted 12-08-2017 04:33 PM

Talent plus, a real balancing act, precision carving. and patience.

-- Brian - Hazelton, British Columbia

View htl's profile


5598 posts in 2445 days

#14 posted 12-08-2017 05:08 PM

Love this project and your last one too!!!!

-- An Index Of My Model making Blogs

View Lucsdogs's profile


32 posts in 2769 days

#15 posted 12-08-2017 06:34 PM

That’s a great looking piece John. I like your idea of bringing the wings forward.
Nice shirt by the way, I’ll say hi to the gang here in Brooklin for you.

-- Bernie, Oshawa, Ontario

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