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Backbent Gouges

You might never need one but, given the right circumstances, they can be the perfect tool! In this lesson I'll help you understand how backbents work and why the shape has arisen.

Related Workshop:


| 19 August 2019 18:02

Jof - There isn't a standard shape for backbent tools, any more than there is for shortbents, and what you get does vary from manufacturer to manufacturer.
I always think of a backbent as having a curve right from the edge that lets it scoop around a shape, like an upside down shortbent. A straight section rather misses the point and I don't think any of mine have this feature.

You don't need much to correct that flat section; just add what would be an inside bevel. (In the same way it enables a straight gouge to be used upside down.) Merge any heel into the blade.

| 19 August 2019 16:20

Hi Chris. In the video you show how the backbent enables you to add a radius to the inside of a curve without digging in (as a straight tool would). And yet I note in your sharpening videos that a) they don't have inside bevels normally and b) sometimes the last half inch or so is not curved but relatively straight. I've found that my backbents - Ashley Iles - do dig in unlike the one in this video. So is this a special tool you've shaped yourself? Or do some brands tend to continue to curve right until the tip rather than stopping early?

Many thanks.

| 03 September 2018 03:06

I love my back bent tools. I use them a lot for undercutting as well.

| 05 September 2012 00:36

Bill - I always recommend buying tools on the basis of need. Depending on the carving you are doing, you may never need a backbent. However, you should know about them and, when the time come that you say, 'I really wish this gouge was backbent', you'll know that you can buy it - and the chances are you'll use it again in the future.

| 04 September 2012 00:13

For us beginners, I suggest that you give us some cuts and widths to consider for the first purchase. Thanks, Bill.

| 11 March 2012 00:58

Beautiful explanation. Until now, no one has been able to explain clearly to me what that tool is good for or how it should be used. Now I know. Thanks for that Chris.


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