wood turning chisels

Wood Turning Chisels

Woodturning chisels help you cut and shape your logs in different styles. They come with handles that are comfortable and allows a secure grip when using them. There are numerous types of woodturning chisels you can use for your workpieces. These chisels are grouped into different parts to serve your need. Here are some of them.

What are the Different Types of Wood Turning Chisels?

Chisels come in different categories, from gouges, chisels, and parting tools. They all serve other purposes. So, before getting any of them, you need to know which one to use and when to use them. Also if you are looking to find the best chisels to start woodturning then check out our Best Woodturning Chisels for Beginners Article.


If your purpose for woodturning is to learn how to carve, then gouges can be what you need. They come in various shapes and sizes, and although it might get confusing trying to know which one to use, they are necessary.

·       Rough-out Gouges

If you want to remove woods on your spindle faster than you can say jack, rough-out gouges serve this purpose. This type of chisel has a wide flute-like blade used in finishing a rectangular wooden spindle. It also allows a turner to get rid of excess material on the piece. Avoid using this chisel on your bowls, as they will damage them. Use this tool, place the tool rest close to the log, and then spin the wood before putting it on the lathe. It ensures that it does not hang or catch on the tool support.

·       Spindle Gouge

You can call this type of tool when compared to the others. It works the same as the roughing gouge, but the difference is that it is smaller, and you can use this tool to form curves on your work material. Since it is small in shape, this means that it will also be used in smaller and tighter areas for a rough-out gouge or to create intricate designs on the wood.

·       Ring Spanners

Also known as bowl gouges, you can use them to deepen the curve in pieces such as cups, bowls, platters, and many other curved formed. In essence, they fashion the internal bowl shape. Ring spanners have a deeper flute that a rough-out gouge does not have. Instead, they are similar to spindle gouges but much slimmer. However, they are sturdy.

Using this tool, place the bowl on a bowl turner lathe rest, and then start cutting the hollow shape into the bowl.


Chisels are cutting tools that have a metal blade with a sharp edge. They can be small-handed to remove tiny debris on your wood or large to rid of stones and wood.

·       Skew Chisels

It is the standard tool used for spindle turning, and it serves various purposes such as cutting, shaping, roughing, and eliminating left irrelevant materials. The skew chisel can be challenging to master but comes in handy if you learn it. It has a flat cutting edge that faces one side. Whether the blade is lying flat on the raw material, plane areas, or rough edges work well for them. With this tool, you can make a V-groove in your workpiece.

Skew chisels have different sizes but if you want to get one, look out for a 3/4 inches skew. With its razor-sharp edge at forty-five degrees and its bevels grounded at about twenty-five to fifty-five degrees, you can produce a masterpiece.

·       Square Nosed Chisels

A square nosed chisel is quite long, even longer than the traditional tissue. Unlike a skew chisel with two levels, a square nosed chisel has one, and it is mostly around forty to sixty degrees. Its cutting edge is flat and square-shaped at the side of the blade.

Parting Tools

A parting tool is a type of chisel that, although meant for parting materials off the lathe, also helps form tenons that hold your wood in a scroll chuck and construct fillets.

·       Plain Parting tools

Sometimes called knife or rectangular parting tools, basic parting tools get handy in spindle turning. It helps to create clean and thin cuts through your workpiece. A straight parting tool blade is shorter and more delicate than most parting tools. It also has a rectangle-like area on the instrument. To use this tool, position the blade with its narrow edge on the work pane.

·       Fluted Parting Tool

The fluted parting tool is unlike any other type of chisel. It has a unique and distinct edge for cutting. You can also use it to make a bead-like shape on the rounded materials. However, it has to be the outer part of the workpiece.

This blade has a resemblance to the plain parting tool, but only in shape. What differentiates these tools is that it has a hollow, beginning from the edge to the blade’s tip, which you can use to make beads on your pieces. A fluted parting tool has numerous thick blades that help you create a bead of any size.

·       Diamond Parting Tool

This tool is also called a waisted parting tool, and it comes with a pointed tip. To use this, too, hold its curved edge while it rests on the tool rest. Then, use it to create a parting in your workpiece or to cut across it. When you use this tool, the waisted area helps decrease the parting cut and the friction between your work corners. Many people believe that this does not work. But, it does. It ensures that the sloping corners of the blade have minimal contact at the middle.

·       Square Parting Tool

Square parting tools are used for beadwork and cutting deep holes across the wood. You can only use this woodturning equipment for spindle turning. Unlike most woodturning tools, a square parting tool’s blade is wider and sturdier than all other parting devices. Its razor-sharp double slanted edges range from forty-five to fifty degrees.

Now, we know the different types of chisels for woodturning, where, when, and how you can use them. If you think of getting one for your woodwork, then check these types here to know which one you should go for.

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