Whittling wood is a traditional activity that involves carving wood into beautifully designed works of art, either as a hobby or a professional. The whittler will take a chunk of wood of their choosing and artistically carve and shave the wood into intricate and delicate designs. Of course, the most detailed results will require the best tool and the sharpest blades, finding the best whittling knives available.
View the Best Whittling Knifes, Below.
- Opinel No8 Carbon Steel Folding Pocket Knife
- Flexcut Right Handed Carvin Multi-Tool
- Imperial IMP16S Stockman Folding Knife
- Morakniv Wood Carving 120 Knife
- BeaverCraft S15 Whittling Wood Carving Kit
- Old Timer 24OT Traditional Folding Whittling Knife
- Flexcut KN12 Cutting Knife
- BeaverCraft C2 Whittling Knife
- BeaverCraft SK1 Wood Carving Hook Knife
- Flexcut JKN88 Whittling Knife
1. Opinel No8 Carbon Steel Folding Pocket Knife
The Opinel No8 Carbon Steel tool offers a carbon steel blade, comprising a length of 3.28 inches. The carbon steel blade ensures that you can easily sharpen the blade when required, providing sublime cutting quality and resistance to wear and tear. Additionally, the shape of the blade is in the Yatagan style, which copies its shape from the Turkish saber. The handle is produced from beech to provide a comfortable and durable tool for your hand to grip. The Opinel No8 Carbon Steel tool provides a weight of only 1.6 ounces making this one of the lightest on this list.
The Opinel No8 Carbon Steel Folding Pocket Knife offers a blade inspired by the Turkish saber for razor-sharp cutting.Check Price on Amazon ➞
2. Flexcut Right Handed Carvin Multi-Tool
The Flexcut Right Handed Carvin Multi-Tool presents a folding tool with six different options, each with a specific purpose and role to adopt when carving your wood. The handle is made from black aluminum for durability and ergonomic hold. The Flexcut Right Handed Carvin Multi-Tool is the perfect tool for serious whittlers who need a variety of blades to create the most intricate artwork.
The Flexcut Right Handed Carvin Multi-Tool provides you with six different blades to ensure that you have all the tools you need to create detailed designs.Check Price on Amazon ➞
3. Imperial IMP16S Stockman Folding Knife
The Imperial IMP16S Stockman Folding Knife provides a 5.9-inch stainless steel blade, perfect for carving. Offering a weight of 1.9 ounces, the grey POM handle is comfortable yet durable. The blades can be sharpened easily to provide longevity to your purchase.
The Imperial IMP16S Stockman Folding Knife is a good choice for whittlers, providing a long blade yet is lightweight overall.Check Price on Amazon ➞
4. Morakniv Wood Carving 120 Knife
The Morakniv Wood Carving 120 Knife weighs 2.4 ounces and is a superb knife for whittling. Providing a length of 9-inches in total, the blade offers a length of 6.49-inches. The oiled birch wood handle ensures that you can hold the whittling tool comfortably and securely, providing you with the perfect tool for carving.
The Morakniv Wood Carving 120 Knife provides a limited lifetime guarantee to provide longevity for your purchase.Check Price on Amazon ➞
5. BeaverCraft S15 Whittling Wood Carving Kit
The BeaverCraft S15 Whittling Wood Carving Kit is the perfect kit for those new to whittling. Comprising a set of three knives, each whittling knife features an ergonomically-designed wooden handle in addition to a precise carving blade in three different styles for varying carving purposes. In addition to offering you three steel blades, this wood carving knife kit offers you a sharpening leather strop as well as a handy tool pouch, enabling you to keep all of your whittling knives safe in one place.
The BeaverCraft S15 Whittling Wood Carving Kit contains three carving knives and everything you need to begin your wood carving journey to produce the best carving sculptures.Check Price on Amazon ➞
6. Old Timer 24OT Traditional Folding Whittling Knife
The Old Timer 24OT Traditional Folding Whittling Knife features the traditional design of other pocket knives while providing the modern high carbon steel desired in whittling blades. Offering six different blades, every possible carving requirement is met, being able to straight gouge, gouge scorp, hook blade, chisel, and v-scorp. The Old Timer 24OT Traditional Folding Whittling Knife is 6-inches long in total and offers an average blade length of 1.5-inches.
The Old Timer 24OT Traditional Folding Whittling Knife is a handy pocket knife that is perfect for whittling, offering six different carving options for your wood carving project.Check Price on Amazon ➞
7. Flexcut KN12 Cutting Knife
The USA produced KN12 Flexcut Cutting Knife weighs 2.4 ounces and provides a blade length of 1 1/8 inches. The blade provided with the knife flexcut provides high carbon steel for a sharp and durable cut, while the handle is produced from ash for a smooth yet ergonomic hold.
The cutting knife flexcut offers a high carbon steel material, which is a tough yet sharp material for whittling knives.Check Price on Amazon ➞
8. BeaverCraft C2 Whittling Knife
The BeaverCraft C2 Whittling Knife is a great knife for beginners and those still relatively new to whittling. The high carbon steel material within the blade is durable and strong and provides a sharp and precise best cut. The length of this knife is 6.5-inches, and the hardwood oak handle provides the user with a secure grip.
The BeaverCraft C2 Whittling Knife offers a desirable combination of a hardwood oak handle and a blade made from carbon steel to provide beginners with the best whittling knife.Check Price on Amazon ➞
9. BeaverCraft SK1 Wood Carving Hook Knife
The BeaverCraft SK1 tool offers a hooked design for intricate whittling. Providing you with a hardwood oak handle that is processed with natural linseed oil, the steel hook is razor-sharp as well as being strong and durable for all of your whittling projects. This tool weighs around 0.8 ounces and is a lightweight choice, the lightest on this list.
The BeaverCraft SK1 tool is a great addition to your collection of whittling knives.Check Price on Amazon ➞
10. Flexcut JKN88 Whittling Knife
The Flexcut JKN88 Knife features the usual design of pocket knives with two different blades, one offering a 2-inch length and the other offering a 1.5-inch length. The length of the wood carving knife in total is just over 4-inches, while the weight of the tool is 4.8 ounces. The razor-sharp cut you receive from your flexcut cutting and flexcut whittling is due to the blade material being made from carbon steel, offering you a precise and sharp shave.
The Flexcut JKN88 Knife provides two sharp knives that are perfect for your carving projects.Check Price on Amazon ➞
Whittling Knifes Buyer’s Guide
Whittling is a traditional form of wood carving to create artistic or practical pieces. It has long been a pastime for many people as well as a professional artistic technique. A carving knife usually involves a large, bulky handle to provide a good grip and a good level of leverage for long periods of sculpting, in addition to a sharp metal blade. The shape of the blade will vary depending on the purpose of the carving knife.
Types of Tool
A general-purpose cutting knife has a rounded point and is the best tool for beginners to start with. A skew knife, however, is used for deep vertical cuts while a roughing knife provides a rounded tip to remove a greater amount of wood shavings. The roughing cut involves a hard push with the roughing knife to remove large chunks of wood and is usually the first step in the process. A chip carving tool offers you a short-bladed point which enables you to make triangular cuts, while a hook knife is a curved tool to allow you to easily work in hollows. The hook tool is available for both left-handed and right-handed users. However, if you are new to this art form, you may wish to use a simple pocketknife that you may already have at home, before purchasing expensive tools.
Types of Wood
The best wood to use for carving is basswood, as it is soft, and it is relatively easy to carve and manipulate. Additionally, you may find both cedarwood and pinewood quite easy to work with, and they will definitely provide you with beautiful results. However, in general, you can use any type of wood for carving, depending on your preferences and the desired finish of your sculpture. If you are a beginner carver, you may want to begin your carving journey with either balsa wood or scraps of wood until you develop your technique. You may find that the first time you whittle wood, you will simply chip away at the wooden block and create random patterns so that you are able to practice your carving technique. However, you may then feel confident and attempt to whittle a bird, for example, out of a piece of wood. Remember to sand your finished product afterward to achieve a smooth and professional piece.
How To Whittle Your Wood
To sculpt your wood, you will first take a large chunk of wood of your choosing, checking that the wood is of high quality. Access a design which you would like your sculpture to look like, or have a clear picture and method in your mind. Begin your rough cut by taking away large parts of your wood, which you will not need, achieving a size that is near to the required size of your desired design. Then, using the correct tool, begin to whittle away at the wood, following your design or the picture you have stored in your mind. Once completed, sand the wood to achieve a smooth finish.
Sharpening Your Blade
After some time, the blades of your knives will begin to dull, and you will need to sharpen them. If you are using a pocketknife, then the best material to use to sharpen the blade is a stone, striking the stone against the blade in a quick motion. If you need to sharpen the blade on your carving tool, then the best method to use is a leather strop, requiring you to draw back the blade several times at an angle of 20 degrees.
Consider wearing specialist gloves before you begin your whittler’s journey. A cut-proof glove is the best to use, and your hands should be protected well from any cuts or injuries. Of course, traditionally gloves are not worn as part of the sculpting process, and you may discover that wearing gloves means that you cannot feel the wood as well as carving barehanded. However, safety should always come first, particularly if you are a beginner. It is also advisable to wear safety goggles to protect your eyes from chunks of wood flying at you when you are a whittler.
Did you know?
Once you have started to use your knives regularly, you will need to sharpen them manually to ensure that you achieve a precise cut every time. You can purchase mechanical blade sharpeners to sharpen your knives if you wish to do so, although manually sharpening blades is quite easy to do. After some time, the blades of your knives will begin to dull, and you will need to sharpen them.
If you are using a pocketknife, then the best material to use to sharpen the blade of your knives is a stone, striking the stone against the blade in a quick motion. If you need to sharpen the blade on your carving knives, then the best method to use is a leather strop, requiring you to draw back the blade several times at an angle of 20 degrees.