Help buying chisel set for wood carving?

I’m planning on buying a chisel set for woodcarving, as I want to detail a jewellery box (end game, lots of practice beforehand).

Is there any gotcha’s in buying a simple set off ebay or is there some sort of brand or type I should favour or be wary of?


For learning a cheap set will be fine. The catch is keeping them sharp. Generally cheaper tools just dont hold a sharp edge for as long.

If you want advice on really good stuff go pay the guys at carbatec a visit.

Ok cool. I’ll grab a cheapo set. I guess they can be resharpened carefully?

all chisel will need regular resharpening… and learning to resharpen them is just a part of owning them. :slight_smile:

other things to consider:

  • cheap chisels will have lower carbon content and will need sharpening more often.
  • wooden handles on chisels tend to get damaged/split more easily ( so either don’t hit them with a metal hammer, or buy ones with impact-resistant handles designed to be tortured. If you must get wooden handles ones ( might be more affordable?) , get ones with a “metal ring” around the top of the handle, as this is designed to minimise splitting when you hit the chisel with a mallet ( or hammer ).
  • in a perfect world, you should never hit your chisels with a metal hammer… use a wood/plastic/rubber mallet. In reality, people do this all the time, so it’s up to you how you want to approach this.
  • wood chisels should only ever be used for wood. don’t use them on plastic, or nails, or aluminium, or as a “scraper”, or for cutting wire/s, or other abuses.

When it comes to this sort of stuff…i’m a sinner, so I own two completely different sets of chisels… one that is cheap, with split wooden handles, never sharp, and I abuse it regularly. The other is a very $$$ premium “Stanley” brand with high carbon content, nice solid plastic handles with a reinforced end , and they are always sharp, and always stored together. :slight_smile: