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Spokeshaves?


TimS
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I dont think a curved spoke shave is as important. I think you can do with out it more than a flat one. There is no real size they come in I believe they are all standard, unless you are talking about planes not spokeshaves which come in about 8 sizes. You can get these at any woodworking store or online.

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Well a spokeshave can't really be compaired to a plane, planes are (generally) used for making thinks flat, a spoke shave is used for shaping.

Personally for necks, I prefer to use a rasp and surform, purley because I'm fairly crap with a spokeshave. However, I think if you're an experienced spokeshave weilder then it's going to be a better method of shaping than a surform. Horses for courses really (and it depends on what job you're doing aswell).

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The last reply has got it down perfect in my opinion. A spokeshave can be one of the most useful things ever, but much like a plane, it has to be well calibrated, you have to use it properly, and it has to be nice and sharp. It's not essential to guitar building, as there are ways to do all of it's task with other tools, but if you can learn to wield it well, it'll be damn useful.

Try getting a junk one from your local good wood store (not the large chains but the smaller stores. Sharpen it up, and practice with it.

Peace.

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I like using spokeshaves. If you are just getting used to using one. Sharpen it up, and set it to take very small cuts. It is good to start that way because it forces you to keep the tool at the right angle (or you cut nothing). Don't make slow heavy cuts. Get used to moving the tool quickly using full passes (and keeping the tool at the right angle). After you get used to it you can increase the cut depth a bit, but you will probably prefer to keep it pretty mild (you will find you prefer to take 3 easy passes instead of one tuff pass, it allows more control and less chance of chunky resluts or chatter). I have always liked the shape of the curved spokeshave for necks. I do only use it to get me within an 1/8" or so. I prefer scrapers and med.long block from there.

Peace,Rich

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+1 to the Lee Valley reccommendation. I have a couple of lousy spokeshaves, so they don't get used (shoddy casting, soft pot metal, bad quality irons, even after trying to tune it all it they were worse than useless). However, like planes, methinks you get what you pay for. Microplanes, Shinto rasps and some good hand-cut rasps are all I use for basic neck shaping these days, with scrapers to fine-tune.

Note: I only ever use flat spokeshaves.

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A spokeshave is not hard to master and they do work very nice. As was said before set it for thin cuts and practice on some scrap. Once you get a feel for it you can rough carve a neck in no time. You will still need a rasp to get in the tight spots.

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The last reply has got it down perfect in my opinion. A spokeshave can be one of the most useful things ever, but much like a plane, it has to be well calibrated, you have to use it properly, and it has to be nice and sharp. It's not essential to guitar building, as there are ways to do all of it's task with other tools, but if you can learn to wield it well, it'll be damn useful.

Same, same......I have used mine with mixed results. I bought cheaper version and I think part of dislike in the tool is to blame on crap quality. When it works, it works wonders. But it only works part of the time.

+1 to the Lee Valley reccommendation. I have a couple of lousy spokeshaves, so they don't get used (shoddy casting, soft pot metal, bad quality irons, even after trying to tune it all it they were worse than useless). However, like planes, methinks you get what you pay for.

I wish I bought a better quality one to begin with. Now I just stick to rasp, files and sandpaper.......

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i have found that the cheaper the spokeshave or plane, the more truing it will need. i have a $25 stanley spokeshave that i couldnt get to work right at all. i bought a book on how to build and true planes and spokeshaves and now i can rough out a neck in about 30 minutes with that spokeshave.

a lot of the same info can be found on the internet as well.

i still have a lingering feeling that the nicer spokeshaves from Veritas et al would be worth the money though as i have one of their block planes and it is a dream to work with.

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But you do create less dust with a spokeshave. The thing i dont like about rasp is all the rough marks it leaves in the wood.

True, but there is the risk of tearout. The roughness gets cleaned up in less than one minute (literally) with a scraper. Also, a good rasp (read: hand-cut rasps like Nicholsons, Shinto, or microplanes) leaves a surprisingly fine surface. I love edge tools, my planes and chisels are some of my favourites, but I'm not terribly tempted to buy a new spokeshave to replace the rasps...

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spokeshave are great for roughing out a neck when they are set up and sharp.

finish with rasp file then scraper.

I had some worry's when I first started using spokeshave and hand plane but the more you use them the better you will get.

the one place I have seen spokeshave is at woodcraft.com if that is any help. :D:D

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I saw a video of a Mexican luthier who carved out a neck blank with nothing but a spokeshave in about 3 minutes. It was complete enough to not need any files at all. Just a little sanding and it was a finished neck. He had lots of practice though.

Was it a spokeshave, or just a (draw)knife? I'm more tempted to buy a plain ol drawknife than I am to pick up a new 'shave...

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I just got my rounded spokeshave from rockler for about $20. It's a "kunz" germany spokeshave. The blade does need to be sharpeneds, as it has a huge burr... wish I could get a burr like that on my scraper! I still need to sharpen, and tune up, but it should work fine.

I'll try it out soon, but before this, I've use the cheese grater sureform, rasp, sanding block and small diameter sanding drum in a cordless drill for shaping the heel. It goes pretty quickly using the old method- I want to try the spokeshave to see if it goes faster, but I have my doubts.

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  • 5 months later...

I just bought a Woodcraft spokeshave today for about $25. Turned out to be a rebranded made in England Stanley 151. The guy there advised me to give it a try rather than the much more expensive Veritas they also sold.

It took a half hour to tune it up, but it does a nice job now.

I did a little work on all the surfaces that were supposed to be flat, and put a good edge on the blade. Just some wet sanding from 100 up to 600 grit did the trick.

Not bad for $25. I probably could've gotten it for $20 somewhere other than Woodcraft.

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But you do create less dust with a spokeshave. The thing i dont like about rasp is all the rough marks it leaves in the wood.

Spokeshave's are great especially if you have almost no heel (bolt on neck). Dust or shavings it's still a mess. I use a spokeshave for some neck shaping (one record and one lee valley model). Ease of use depends on the wood species. grain direction and how well you setup the spokeshave and in some small part the type of spokeshave.

I also use a rotary rasp on a foredom tool for shaping my necks as well as a pattern makers rasp. It's really a whatever you got that works kind of thing. I try to stay away from a heavy cut rasps for removing wood only because I like power tools and find it more to my style of shaping. Some people have used die grinders from Harbor freight to power shape a neck, cheaper than my Pattern Makers rasp.

Lee valley has some of the best spokeshaves along with good prices. I also give them a thumbs up +2.

Woodenspoke

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