List of wood shaving tools

Thinkstock/Comstock/Getty Images

Some of today's woodworkers prefer to use the traditional tools and methods of their ancestors. Traditional hand tools do not require electricity, and logs are generally clamped into a shaving horse. A traditional, hand-hewn shaving horse can hold nearly any size wood, from small branches to large logs.

A shaving horse is extremely versatile and completely adjustable, making the wood shaving task a great deal easier.


A plane is a hand-held carpenter's tool, made of wood or steel and used for smoothing and levelling wood surfaces and edges. In spite of electronically powered tools, the wood plane is often preferred for projects like fixing a sticky door or window and for chamfering board corners. The wood plane is also used for smoothing rough areas left behind by electronic saws and drills.


A sharp, broad axe is used to smooth one or more sides of logs. The cutting edge of the axe is run across the grain of a log during the downward splitting motion. The axe has a handle that angles outward to keep its wielder's hands clear of the wood while still allowing the axe blade to slice the wood at an almost vertical angle.


When it comes to shaving wood, a chisel should never be used in conjunction with a hammer. Instead, a chisel should be extremely sharp and sharpened often. The excessive force of a hammer blow will cause the chisel to cut at an angle instead of a level shave. A chisel is often used for cutting smoothing notches and joints in wood where two pieces are fastened together.

Draw Knife

A large draw knife, or draw shave, has a curved blade with a handle on each end. The large versions of a draw shave are used for removing bark from logs by pulling the blade toward the operator. Draw knives come in a wide variety of shapes and sizes. Some of the smaller sizes have a straight-edged blade while others form a complete circle for shaving all sides of a log at the same time. A circular draw knife is called a scorp; half-circle-shaped draw knives are called inshaves.


A spokeshave is used to shape round items, such as chair rungs and wooden wheel spokes. The spokeshave is similar to the draw knife in handling but the cutting surface and blade more closely resemble a wood plane.