Spokeshave question

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Forum topic by Phillym posted 03-30-2018 02:51 AM 487 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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7 posts in 788 days

03-30-2018 02:51 AM


I like to make live edge cutting boards and want to keep the natural profile on the edge. I have been sanding and using a block plane but now I’m thinking of a spokeshave. What should I get. Flat bottom, concave ?? Any help greatly appreciated

4 replies so far

View Rich's profile


5126 posts in 1190 days

#1 posted 03-30-2018 05:51 AM

I’d go with a Kutzall. It’s very easy to control and you can create very natural looking edges. Get the fine wheel, it’s plenty aggressive for small pieces. It’s what we use for mesquite live edge pieces here in AZ.

-- Half of what we read or hear about finishing is right. We just don’t know which half! — Bob Flexner

View Dave Polaschek's profile

Dave Polaschek

4433 posts in 1183 days

#2 posted 03-30-2018 11:04 AM

A flat-bottom spokeshave will be more generally useful than a concave one, but if you’re only going to use it for rounding corners, concave will work too. I’ve got a half-dozen spokeshaves, and I end up reaching for my LN Boggs spokeshave (which is slightly convex front to back, but flat across the blade, which is easiest to sharpen) most often. Second-most-used is a Kunz with an adjustable mouth, which is nice if I’m running into trouble with challenging grain. The Kunz is almost dead flat, and not great quality, but being able to close up the mouth is sometimes handy.

When starting off, I had a tendency to set the blades too aggressively. As I’ve gotten better, I’ve found that with a shave, taking multiple thin cuts ends up going more quickly for me, so my shaves are all adjusted for fairly thin shavings. With a curved sole, like the Boggs, you can set it a little more aggressive, and rotate the shave slightly to make it take a shallower cut when needed, but that’s a finesse thing that took me a while to get right.

-- Dave - Santa Fe

View bbasiaga's profile


1243 posts in 2596 days

#3 posted 03-30-2018 12:13 PM

I actually think the round bottom shaves are more versatile, though they take some practice to get used to holding it right. I have a round Veritas and a flat Boggs. I use both, but the round will follow any contour, once you get the hang of it.


-- Part of engineering is to know when to put your calculator down and pick up your tools.

View OSU55's profile


2495 posts in 2590 days

#4 posted 03-30-2018 01:31 PM

Im confused. I figured live edge meant the edge was left alone. Sounds like you just want to contour the edge? If so, I’d probably start with a bandsaw or jigsaw, then use a curved bottom, straight blade shave that will do both concave and convex curves. Tilted it can fare the top or bottom edges.

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