Balsa wood is very popular among consumers both in industrial areas and in our daily life. Balsa wood is famous for its lightweight and soft advantages. It can be easy to work with. Balsa wood is the ideal choice if you want to whittle wood, especially for those starter or learner who want to whittle wood. Frankly speaking, whittling is the simple removal of pure shaving or cutting small bits from a piece of wood with a knife.
What should you prepare if you want to become a good whittler? There are many things that should be taken into your consideration. For example, you should choose the right wood and proper knife, the basic whittling techniques, the maintenance and storage methods and skills.
First of all, you should choose the proper wood. Frankly speaking, soft wood is the best choice. Balsa wood is famous for its lightweight, softness and easy to work with. So, it should be your ideal choice to whittle. Although pine is easily to cut, it is not able to hold details well. Although birch, cedar and maple are used for whittling, they are not belong to soft wood. You should choose the balsa wood with a straight grain and uniform color. A straight grain is usually a softer wood than crossed grains. Changes in color mean changes in hardness.
Second, you should know how to choose the proper knife. One of the best factors for choosing whittling knife is to take consideration whether it is comfortable or not. You are advised to avoid stainless steel knives since it is not easy to sharpen them correctly. There are various kinds of whittling knives that fit in the palm of your hand. Some knives can be opened with one hand to make it very comfortable and easy to work with. You should test the knife to see whether it is easy to operate with.
Third, whittle balsa wood. You are advised to wear gloves to avoid cutting your hands or fingers. You should be careful to keep all fingers and other body parts away from knife edges actually. Your thumb should be against the spine with the edge facing your fingers. Ensure that the hand holding the knife should be further from your body than the hand holding the piece of wood.