Spoon carving from a Bushcraft perspective with Jon Mac...
I am a spoon carver who lives and works on Dartmoor in Devon.
I carve spoons and Kuksa from green wood, using the three principal bushcraft tools. The knife, Axe and hook knife. I find spoon carving gives me a greater understanding of these tools as I can demonstrate a precision of craft in the finished spoon. I have developed my own spoon carving knife 'The MaChris' which is made by 'Chris Grant' a fantastically talented bladesmith.

Sunday, 29 March 2015

Hand carved spoons, kolrosing and chip carving.

I've been experimenting with some new spoon carving designs.
A touch of chip carving alongside simple tattooing.


It's quite amazing what can be achieved by the simple application of the tip of your knife.


Plus a little dry ground coffee.


Once again, I used a compass to mark out my design.


Then painstakingly added the depressions with the tip of my MiniMac carving knife.


Some of the spoons here are left plain as the natural markings are quite enough.



 I've been using my most recent MaChris for quite some time now.
The MaChris bushcraft/carver Chris made for me in 14C28N  has proved to be almost as resiliant as the 52100 bearing steel that is used in our standard MaChris knife range.
There is not much between the two.
I like the idea of a rust proof bushcraft/carver, especially when one lives in a wet and damp environment like Dartmoor.



Find me on Instagram.


Sunday, 8 March 2015

Re Profiled Gransfors Bruk.

Last summer, my good friend and associate Chris Grant came to stay with Sarah and I in our little home on Dartmoor.
As you may know, Chris is a Bladesmith, an old hand, who produces my MaChris line of carving and bushcraft knives.
As I have probably mentioned before, Chris has a super web site showcasing his knife making skills.
You can find it here at 

Chris Grant near Start point, Devon.

As ever, we spent a lot of time chatting about knives, steel and Axes.
Chris has a knowledge of steel that will make ones mind boggle.
I mentioned to Chris that my Gransfors Bruk carving axe had a few design issues.
He had a look at the axe and decided to take it home to Scotland for a visit to his workshop.

gransfors bruk axes+spooncarving axe+makemethischris
L:standard-R:re profiled

The main issue for me lies beneath the beard of the axe.
A cunningly designed pinch point for my, ok, rather big fingers.

gransfors bruk axes+spooncarving axe+makemethischris
L:standard R:re profiled

Above, on the left is a standard G.B carver and on the right is the re-profiled carver.
You can just make out the easing of the tight pinch point in the beard.

Polished underside of the re ground beard.

 As well as easing the pinch point, Chris re-profiled the cutting edge, drawing the bevel out further toward the eye.

gransfors bruk axes+spooncarving axe+makemethischris

This re-profiling has given the axe a much better bite.
When sharpened one can feel an improvement in it's cutting ability.

gransfors bruk axes+spooncarving axe+makemethischris

It's now faster and more accurate, it slices further through the cut and is all together a much improved axe.

gransfors bruk axes+spooncarving axe+makemethischris

I have used the G.B extensively now for cutting spoon blanks and roughing out a wooden model of a cooking knife Chris and I are working on.
This is pretty well how all our knives start.

cooking knife+MaChris+jonmac+chrisgrant+makemethischris

We will have a chat over the phone and when the time is right a model is made.
I then send it up to Chris and he performs his majik.
Tweaking a bit here and there until we are both satisfied we are heading in the right direction.
Once a top quality steel has been chosen that is suitable for the job in hand Chris will make a working prototype which is sent back to me for evaluation.
Now the flu I mentioned in my last post has gone, I can get back to working on our designs.
I'm having some folks stay here for a spot of camping and carving over the easter break, I'll put some of our knives in their hands for some useful feedback.

In the meantime I have been playing with kolrossing designs for my spoons.
You'll find a tutorial in my previous post.



I like how this one turned out, it's a bit shabby here and there, but I learned a lot for the next one.


Enjoy.... J