Whittling is the art of taking wood or other materials, and turning them into useful and interesting things. It’s a classic American tradition. What a joy, to be a lad and to receive your first pocket knife from your pa. “Pa,” you might say, “I am thrilled to carry on the glorious legacy of our bloodline by whittling spoons, figurines, and other quality goods.” And, boy, would your pa be proud of your dedication to the craft.
Anyway, if you’re looking for the best whittling knife, you’re in the right place. Finding a whittling knife is a difficult task, and there are many things to consider. If you buy the wrong whittling knife, you may feel the pain of regret for the rest of your life. Fortunately, this article covers what to look for in a whittling knife, and then includes in-depth reviews of various whittling knives, their pros and cons, and more.
Table of Contents
- How to find the best whittling knife?
- Whittling Knife Reviews
- Final Thoughts
How to find the best whittling knife?
There are many things to consider when looking for a whittling knife. Since a good whittling knife can last for a long time, it’s always a good idea to make sure that you have done your research, and that you thought about what’s important to you in a little lamb knife. To narrow it down to a few particularly important points, consider the following.
Buy a set or just 1 tool?
When purchasing woodworking tools, you may notice that they often come in sets. These sets tend to contain a specific set of common tools, such as a carving knife, a hook knife, a chip carving knife, often polishing compound, a leather strop, and a roll of some sort that the tools can be stored in.
Of course, it’s also possible to buy individual tools. If you’re starting off and only want to start with a single tool, you might start with a standard whittling knife, since it is fairly versatile and can do many of the tasks that other tools can do, despite other tools being more specialized for those use cases. Plus, you can always purchase additional tools later on based on what you need.
What hand do you carve with?
Whittling tools often feature ergonomic handles. The implication of this is that these knives and tools may be designed only for a single hand. If you’re looking for whittling tools that are designed for the left hand, you may want to check in advance when making a purchase.
If you are left handed, you may also consider purchasing a more general knife, rather than an explicit whittling tool. These do have limitations, but they tend to be more easily used in either hand, which can help to alleviate this problem.
Knife or Explicit Whittling Tool
Any old knife can be used for whittling. There are also knives and toolsets that are designed explicitly for whittling. There are of course pros and cons to choosing a specific whittling tool over choosing to purchase a plain, versatile knife.
Whittling tools explicitly designed to be used for whittling. These tools are generally designed to be small and precise, which allows for fine, detailed work to be done. A cutting knife designed explicitly for whittling–while larger than detail tools–will still have a much smaller blade than a plain knife, in almost all cases. These tools are great for whittling, although they are also a specialty item that can’t replace a good ol’ knife for versatility.
Plain knives are, well, plain knives. Certain types of knives can be better for whittling than others. For example, knives that are thinner and with a harder steel such as bushcraft knives can be advantageous for whittling. Of course, the other advantage to having a plain knife is that it is also more versatile for other general tasks.
Overall, having a set of tools specifically designed for whittling can get great results. At the same time, it’s always nice to have a regular knife on hand. The choice comes down to your preference, what is already in your toolset, and what you’re looking to add.
Whittling Knife Reviews
To figure out what the best Whittling knife is, I decided to test a number of different products. Some of these are knife whittling tools; some of these are individual whittling tools; and some of these are individual knives that can be used for a variety of purposes, including whittling.
Okay, let’s get into the reviews. It’s time to figure out what the best whittling knife on the entire planet truly is.
Flexcut Beginner Palm & Knife Set
After testing the products in this article, I found this to be the best product on this list. The tools are, as promised, razor sharp out of the box. I was able to whittle six spoons within a few hours. The cutting knife does a great job getting things started, and the other tools are great for finishing things up. I also liked the visual appearance and the feel of the set. These knives look and feel great.
Overall, this is a great option for both beginners and experts. For beginners, this has everything you’ll need out-of-the-box. If you have no whittling tools, this will give you everything you need. If you’ve already got tools, this is a great addition to your toolset. These are high quality and well-made tools that will serve you well for a lifetime, or at least a few decades.
Wood Carving Tools Set for Spoon Carving
This woodworking toolset’s main selling point is that it is focused on spoon carving in particular. These tools will give you everything you might want out of the box to participate in the glorious pastime of whittling spoons. However, these tools can certainly also be used for more general carving and whittling.
When I got these tools, I tested them out on a few different things. First of all, they do work great and, as promised, I was able to carve spoons. Additionally, it was easy enough to use these tools to do some touch-ups on other non-spoon projects. I found that the Flexcut set was a little sharper out of the box, and did come with a few more things, but these tools are quite reliable. The amount of value that you get from these tools is very high, and they’re a great starter set or similar.
Wood Carving Knife by Red Geese
I tested this knife out and it’s an all-around solid knife. It is, as promised by the product page, sharp out of the box. This is comparable to the whittling knives that come in the two sets listed above. The main difference is that it is a single knife, rather than a set. While it’s nice to have other tools you can get very far with a single whittling knife. Plus, since it’s a single tool, the total cost is lower.
This is a great option that comes at a steal. If you’re a professional, this is a nice extra knife to have in your toolbox. If you’re a beginner, this is a great starting point.
Opinel Carbon Steel Folding Pocket Knife
Overall, this is a solid knife and it can certainly be used for whittling. The hard steel makes this a better option for whittling than some more generic pocket knives. Of course, this is a pocket knife rather than a dedicated whittling toolset. If that’s what you’re looking for, this is a great tool. If you want something more specialized, check out some of the other products on this list, like the Flexcut set.
DUGATO Wood Carving Tools Set
Overall, I found this set to be decent. Personally, I lean toward the Craftyfier set, which contains a comparable set of tools and feels a bit higher quality. However, this set is still decent, and may be a little less expensive. This is a decent budget set that you might consider if you’re looking for a starting place.
Old Timer 6 in 1 Whittling Knifebush craft trips.
This is a 6 in 1 set that has everything you need for whittling. It has a chisel, a couple of straight knifes and hook knives. You could whittle anything you like this with and it fits into your pocket just like any other multi-tool you own. It’s very impressive and a fantastic idea.
The steel is decent quality for the price point and I found it comfortable to use. However, like most “X in 1” tools you do end up making compromises and this is no different. Switching between knife types isn’t as easy as picking up the other knife you have, you have to stop, fold in, fold out and then you’re there. This fills a niche for those looking to go into the bush with a compact set of knives, but if you’re working at home in your yard I’d go with a dedicated “real” set of knives instead.
Boy, there are a lot of whittling knives that are great. However, it’s time to narrow things down. Out of the five products reviewed above, there are three that stand out to me.
The first product is the Flexcut Beginner Palm & Knife Set, which was the best knife set hands down in terms of quality. These knives were extremely sharp out of the box, and they worked great for all kinds of work, including detail work. These knives also feel high quality when you use them, and look great visually. You can tell that these are well-made and designed to be reliable. These are great tools that are bound to last you for years to come.
The second product is the Wood Carving Tools Set for Spoon Carving, which is an extremely high quality knife set at this price point. For what you’re paying, you’re getting an excellent knife set. And, even ignoring the price, this is still an excellent tool.
The third product is the Wood Carving Knife by Red Geese, which is a great budget knife, since it’s a single tool rather than a full set. Back in the day, pioneers whittled wooden figurines with nothing more than their teeth. This knife puts you light years ahead of them, even though there are more “hardcore” knife sets out there.
So, which of these knives do you think is the best? If you decide to buy one of these models, drop a comment below. We’re always interested to hear what our readers have to say. And, of course, if you have any questions about any of these knives, or about how to choose the best whittling knife for you, leave them below. This is the world’s best article about whittling knives, so it’s time to leave the world’s best comments. Do it now.