Tools for Working Wood

 Joel's Blog at Tools for Working Wood

Ray Iles Adds A 1/8 Inch Mortise Chisel To The Line  

11/22/2010

When Ray and I first spoke about him making mortise chisels for me we wanted the full range from 1/8 - 1/2" by 1/16". About a year later the first prototypes showed up, and soon after the rest was history.
.

Ray is currently the only maker of traditional English oval bolstered mortise chisels and his guess is that they haven't been made since just after World War Two. He is making them with a oval handle that is flush to the bolster (and hand fitted as a consequence) a process that really wasn't done much if at all since Victorian times.

Ray had to figure out how to make these chisels from scratch and once in the early days he called me all excited because he could not figure out how to grind something using a traditional method without leaving some peculiar grind marks. He was tickled pink to tell me that when he looked at some old mortise chisels of the same size - they had the same grinding marks. He also could not figure out how to make a 1/8" chisel. It would be possible he said but really really hard.

If you happen to have an old 1/8" mortise chisel you know how dainty they are and how they just disappear into the wood on narrow joints. I made a mortise 1 1/2" long x 1/8" wide by about 3/4" deep in something like 4 stokes and a little cleanup.

Anyway - flash forward five years and the chisels have been a big hit but still no 1/8" chisel.

Then about a month ago I was on the phone with Ray and he said he had just finished up a batch of 1/8" chisels and was starting on the 1/4".

"Backup" I said. "What did you just say?"

"I just finished up a batch of 1/8" chisels and the 1/4" are well underway". he said.

"I thought you couldn't figure out how to make them" I said.

"Well I figured it out." He said.

So we have 1/8" mortise chisels in stock. They do take a little more work so they are a little more expensive than the 3/16". The 5/16" and 1/2" which are out of stock at the moment are expected reasonably soon.

You can read more about the chisels and order here.


Tags:Product News, Sales, and Promotions
Comments: 1
11/24/2010Mark Gray 
Oh thats a Mortising Chisel,.at first glance It looked like a fileting knife.
Comments are closed.
The opinions expressed in this blog are those of the blog's author and guests and in no way reflect the views of Tools for Working Wood.
Subscribe
 Joel's Blog
 Ben's Blog
 Work Magazine
Recent Blogs:
Summer Reading: Factory Man-07/16/2014
The Hand and Eye Blog and some FYI's-06/19/2014
Relentless Self Promotion (and a Small Freebie)-06/11/2014
Lettercarving In Wood and Chris Pye's Free Offer. -05/28/2014
Handworks May 2015, Amana IA - Probably a Bad Idea-05/21/2014
NYC Design Show at Industry City-05/14/2014
Gehard Demetz - Woodcarvings in Chelsea - and Other News-05/07/2014
Festool Domino Sale - Machines and Accessories 10% off May 1 - June 30th 2014-05/01/2014
Automation and Carpal Tunnel Syndrome-04/23/2014
English Mortise Chisels - Mid-18th Century to Now - Part 5 - How to Handle a Chisel-04/17/2014
English Mortise Chisels - Mid-18th Century to Now - Part 4 - Chisel handles-04/15/2014
English Mortise Chisels - Mid-18th Century to Now - Part 3 - The Body of The Tool-04/10/2014
English Mortise Chisels -Part 2 - Mid-18th Century to Now - What the Catalogs Tell Us-04/08/2014
English Mortise Chisels - Mid-18th Century to Now - Introduction-04/03/2014
Campaign Furniture-03/26/2014
Modern Apprenticeships-03/05/2014
Shellac-02/26/2014
The Biggest Book In Woodworking-02/12/2014
The Woodworking Shows - Somerset, NJ, Feb 21-23 2014-02/06/2014
Black & Decker 1980-02/05/2014
Older Entries...
Some Interesting Woodworking Blogs
Adam Cherubini
Tom Fidgen
Full Chisel Blog
Heartwood
Hock Tools - The Sharpening Blog
Norse Woodsmith
Jeff Peachy (book conservation)
Pegs and 'Tails
The Produce Savant
Konrad Sauer
Another Chris Schwarz Blog
Robin Wood Woodcraft
Rude Mechanicals Press(Megan Fitzpatrick)
UnpluggedShop.com - Hand Tool News
The Woodshop Bug
Chris Schwarz
Some Woodworking Forums
Family Woodworking
Knots
Saw Mill Creek
Wood Central
WoodNet
Woodwork Forums (Australia)
UK Workshop