A groove is a narrow cut or furrow in a material. A number of tools are available to create grooves. These tools differ in terms of the material that they are designed to cut, their source of motive power and the manner in which they are applied to the object in which the groove is to be cut. Groove cutting tools can be either manual or powered by some external source.
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The most common type of groove-cutting tool is the knife, of which there are many different types. Knives are often used in craft work, such as scrimshaw, whittling or woodcuts, all of which might require the knife to be used to cut a groove. Any sharp knife can be used in these applications, but commonly used types include penknives or Swiss army knives.
Chisels are tools consisting of a wedge-shaped blade at one end of a rectangular piece of metal attached to a wooden or plastic handle. Chisels are used for cutting grooves in both stone and metal. Many different kinds of chisels are available. The one most commonly used for cutting grooves is the carving chisel. Chisels are also often used in lathing, in which an object is rotated and the chisel is applied to create a circular groove around the circumference of the object.
A gouge is like a chisel except that instead of its blade being a wedge with flat surfaces, the wedge of a gouge can be any one of a number of different shapes. These shapes include curved surfaces, which can be used to form grooves with curved cross sections. Gouges are often used for cutting grooves in certain specialised applications, such as the manufacture of violins and other musical instruments.
Power tools used for cutting grooves into stone or brick are called wall chasers or brickwork chasers. Wall chasers are used to cut grooves for both aesthetic purposes and practical purposes. For example, they can be used to create rustication - ornamental grooves - in stone walls or cut grooves for electrical wires. Wall chasing can create large amounts of dust, and, as such, should only be undertaken by qualified professionals with appropriate safety equipment.
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