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Here are a few of the answers to commonly asked questions.
Q. What wood is suitable for carving spoons?
A. Most British hardwoods are suitable, fruit woods such as Apple, Cherry, Pear etc. Sycamore, Field Maple, Hazel, Silver Birch are also good to use close grained woods work the best.
Q. What tools do you use to carve your spoons?
A. I have quite a collection of tools, A couple of Gransfors Axes (Carving Axe and Wildlife Axe) to split the billets and remove most of the waste wood. I have 3 Frosts Sloyd knives 120, 106, 110, then I have a couple of Svante Djarv spoon knives and also a couple of spoon knives from Ben Orford.
Q. Do you recommend sanding wooden spoons?
A. I personally prefer silky smooth spoons although others disagree. It has been suggested by some that a tooled finish is much harder wearing that a sanded finish
Q. What do you use to finish your spoons?
A. I use a range of different grit (80 to 600) abrasives I prefer ‘Abranet’ as it seems to last longer, Then usually 3 to 4 coats of Chestnut Food safe finish (Liquid Paraffin), although there are a few other products that I want to try such as those from Organoil.
Q. Can I use Sunflower, vegetable or olive oil to finish my spoons.
A. These oils are not recommended as they can go rancid after a while, instead you could use Linseed or Walnut oil, both of these will dry and not remain sticky to touch. I have just found a great new Linseed oil from High Barn Farm Oils it seams to work very well, I’m currently trying that. I also use a Chestnut Product called Food Safe Finish this gives a clear coating.
More Q and A’s when time permits or if you have a question please email it to me and I will try to answer it.