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Sharpening U Gouges

The 'sweep' of what I call a 'true' gouge is an arc of a circle. Even the flattest (#3) gouge will, if you continue stsbbing around its sweep, circle round and back to itself. It's more obvious with the #9's, which are semicircles. This circle-based quality of the cutting edge is one we make use of extensively as we carve.

'U-shaped' gouges, on the other hand, are just that and you can't spin them into a circle. They are normally given the Sheffield numbers #10 and 11, though not all makers agree exactly what shapes these refer to. Essentially the edges are extended from the bottom (#9) circle in various ways: parallel-sided or more spreading out. These more open tools can have 'sides' that may be flat like chisels, or a little curve, like gouges. So, a more complicated tool!

The trick to knowing how to sharpen these tools is to understand what you are looking at: either a chisel, or a gouge - or both...


| 20 December 2020 21:11

Understood..........Thank you kindly.

| 20 December 2020 12:04

John - If you keep the same angle, you'll just shorten the tool at the wrong angle so, yes, you need to drop the handle and sharpen at a lower cutting angle. Initially you'll be removing metal from the heel; as the bevel reaches the cutting edge, you'll see the whole thing is longer.

| 19 December 2020 18:59

My gouges have a short bevel. I want to extend them as
per your video. Do I just extend the bevel at the same angle that it
already is at, or do I need to change the angle slightly as I extend the bevel?
Thus lowering the cutting angle of the tool?

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