You’ve mastered sharpening your plane blades and chisels; now it’s time to work on getting those curved tools razor sharp. One way to ensure an even edge is to use a jig like the Oar Sharpener.
Designed by Ross Oar and machined in the U.S. by West Falls Woodcarvings (Ross and Barbara Oar’s company), the aluminum sharpening jig clamps over the tool to keep its edge at the correct sharpening angle. Besides gouges and V-tools, the Oar Sharpener will also work with bench chisels up to 1-1/2″ wide.
The Oar Sharpener comes with complete instructions. Pricing starts around $29 before shipping.
You know you woodcarving is in your blood when you carry a miniature gouge on your key chain. This isn’t a toy — Two Cherries manufactures this carving gouge in Germany with the same process they use for their full-size tools, only they mount it on a key chain and don’t sharpen it so you won’t turn your pockets into Swiss cheese.
If you really wanted to you could sharpen the gouge and use it as a woodcarving tool; just don’t put it in your pocket after that. You can pick up this miniature gouge for around $25.