Hat Making Tool: Half Circle Groove Curling Shackles, Pencil Curl & Kettle Curl 2-Piece Wooden Tools

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Project by Mark A. DeCou posted 07-18-2008 01:08 AM 30759 views 0 times favorited 3 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I have several different sized Wooden “Half-Circle Groove” Curling Shackles available now.

The common nomenclature for the type of hat curl someone wants is pretty hard to describe with the common names, such as “Pencil Curl” and “Kettle Curl”.

To help distinguish between the size of curlers I can make, I’m using the diameter of the carved groove, such as:

Curling Tool Sizes:
  1. 1/4” dia. Curl Groove
  2. 3/8” dia. Curl Groove
  3. 1/2” dia. Curl Groove
  4. 5/8” dia. Curl Groove
  5. 3/4” dia. Curl Groove
  6. 1” dia. Curl Groove

ARE LISTED IN MY ETSY.COM ONLINE SHOP, click here to check inventory

If you would like a curling shackle, please email me:
[email protected]

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Here is Hat Maker Tom Gomez of Premier Panama Hats showing how he uses my Full Circle Curling Tool to make a Kettle Curl in a Straw Body Hat. Here is a link to Tom's ebay Store

If the Player screen doesn’t work, click here to go straight to the youtube page

If you like Hatmaking Tool Videos, click here to see Tom use one of my Foot Tollikers


Project Story:

To add to my other work in the “Artisan Hat Tools by Mark DeCou Studio” Hatmaking Tool Line, is this Wood Curling Iron. This tool is used by custom Hat Makers to form the “Kettle” curl in a hat brim, typically a Western Style Cowboy Hat. But, this type of curling iron can also be used on Fedoras, and Lady’s Millinery Hats.

The Material is Hard Rock Maple, Brass, and a signature “Abalone Shell” inlayed dot.

The antique tool on the Left in the photos is what I used as my guide to make the new Maple Curling Iron.

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Pencil Curl Tool:
This tool has a 1/2” diameter curl carved into the body of the tool. This tool is specifically designed for the Pencil Curl style edge. If you want to roll the curl down and flatten it into an Over Welt pressed edge, I have another tool for that, click here to see it

Showing the use of 3/4” Hinge Shackle curling tool on my shop practice hat. This hat has not been wetted, or steamed in the photo.


Artisan Hat Tools by Mark DeCou Studio
(Do you want to see More? Just follow these links):

ARE LISTED IN MY ETSY.COM ONLINE SHOP, click here to check inventory

Rounding Jacks, Collector’s Editions:
  1. Ebonized Walnut Clockwise with Laser Engraving
  2. Walnut Counter Clockwise w/Laser Engraving
  3. Walnut Uni-Directional Cutter
Rounding Jacks, Deluxe Model:
  1. Maple Deluxe Model, Counter Clockwise Cutter
  2. Maple Deluxe Model, Clockwise Cutter
  3. Walnut Deluxe, Counter Clockwise Cutter
  4. Walnut Deluxe, Clockwise Cutter
Rounding Jacks, Hobbyist-Hatter Model:
  1. Walnut Hobbyist-Hatter Model, Counter Clockwise Cutter
  2. Walnut Hobbyist-Hatter Model, Clockwise Cutter
Bench-Top Display Stands for Rounding Jacks:
  1. Walnut Bench-Top Display Stand
  2. Oak Bench-Top Display Stand
    Click here to check inventory
Customized Rounding Jacks, Personalized for Specific Hatters:
  1. Spradley Hats in Apline, TX
  2. Rachel Pollock of La Bricoleuse
  3. Brainpan Hat Shop in Sumner, WA
  4. Steve Delk's Adventurebilt Hat Co.
  5. Marc Kitter's Adventurebilt Hat Co.
  6. Pyrate Trading Co.
  7. Hatman Jack at Wichita Hat Works
  8. Inaaya Hat Co.
  9. Penman Hat Co.
Formillons & Conformateurs:
  1. Complete Restoration of a Maillard Conformateur and Formillon
  2. New DeCou Formillion & Conformer, Prototypes #1 & #2
  3. Custom Designed Conformateur Carrying & Storage Case
  4. New Plot Base Board for the Maillard Allie Formillon
  5. Maple Wrench for Tightening Formillon Thumbnuts
Foot Tollikers:
  1. Left-Handed & Right-Handed Foot Tolliker
  2. Foot Tolliker: Elk Antler & Birch Wood, on a Display Stand
  3. Foot Tolliker: Walnut Wood, on a Display Stand
  4. Foot Tollikers: Three in White Birch Wood
  5. Foot Tollikers: Walnut Wood Set of Four
  6. Foot Tollikers, Birch Wood Double Set, on Display Stand
Brim Edge Curling Tools:
  1. Hinge-Shackle Curling Tool for the Homburg Hat
  2. Full Circle Shackle Curling Tool
  3. Half Circle Shacking Curling Tool
  4. Groove Tolliker Curing Tool
Band Blocks:
  1. Thick Poplar Wood, Various Sizes and Oval Shapes, with Tapered Sides
Crown Blocks
  1. Long Oval Crown Block Sculpting Work
Hat Block Spinners:
  1. Late Turned Hat Block Spinners
Flange Stands:
  1. Heavy Duty Flange Stands
Puller Downers:
  1. Puller Downers
Pusher Downers:
  1. Pusher Downers
Hat Racks, Hat Stands, & Cedar Band Blocks:
  1. Hat Racks to keep oval shapes
Stainless Steel Slip Stick:
  1. “Coming Soon”, please check back.

(Note:This project story, project design, and photos are protected by copyright in 2008-2010 by the Author, M.A.DeCou., all rights reserved, no use allowed without expressed written permission.)

-- Mark DeCou - American Contemporary Craft Artisan -

3 comments so far

View Karson's profile


35207 posts in 4942 days

#1 posted 07-18-2008 02:08 AM

Another nice hat tool Mark. Great job. You need to get some pictures of the hats being modified by your hat tools.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Appomattox Virginia [email protected]

View darryl's profile


1795 posts in 4868 days

#2 posted 07-18-2008 01:15 PM

I second Karson’s request, getting a picture of the tool “in-use” would be interesting. Also, it’s a little tough to tell the size of the tool. what are these, about 4 to 6 inches long?

View Callum Kendall's profile

Callum Kendall

1918 posts in 4245 days

#3 posted 07-18-2008 05:35 PM

Great work!

Thanks for the post


-- For wood working podcasts with a twist check out

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