A friend asked:
I was wondering what your go-to recommendation for a book for a beginning spoon carver would be? Also what beginner level knife set (if any) is the most preferable?
For beginner knives: You need a Sloyd knife and a hook. I recommend a Mora 106 for the sloyd and probably the BeaverCraft Open Curve Spoon Knive for the hook.
Both are roughly $20-$30 each and unless you do carving to sell things on a daily basis, you might not outgrow them. As long as you keep them sharp they’ll serve you well.
I can’t remember if you are left or right handed, but know that most hook knives can come left or right handed. It looks like the specific one I recommended from BeaverCraft is right hand only, but Robin Wood has a similar open curve style that comes left or right. (In fact, it is his design originally)
For sharpening, get some sandpaper in various grits from 120-3000 and use that on a flat block to sharpen your sloyd and on a round dowel to sharpen the hook.
This is a great video on sharpening from Emmet van Driesche:
For books: The one I want to recommend isn’t available yet. My friend Emmet van Driesche is writing one now. So I think I’ll recommend Barn the Spoon’s Spoon book.
I think that is along the lines of what you are looking for: Primary greenwood carving with knives and axes, not bandsaws and sanders. Though if that assumption is wrong, I can recommend others.
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