Sunday, 26 September 2010


I have struggled on long enough now without a Shavehorse but enough is enough, time to make one. First job is to split out a large log for the bench of the horse. I suspect mine will have to spend most of its time outdoors , so I have elected to use Oak with its high Tanin content. I enjoy using hand tools as much as possible so I crosscut a 6ft log with a handsaw, split it with wedges and a mallet, and flattened the top surface roughly with an old British Rail Adze I was given. I am interested in texture in my woodworking so took the opportunity to experiment with Knives, an Adze and Gouges whilst smoothing out the surface. Working at dusk on a nice sunny evening is great with the low light for showing up any imperfections.
Next job is to source some suitable material for the legs. Again I will be using either Oak or Chestnut for durability. The leg tenons will be 1 1/2". There are many patterns of shavehorse, dependant on the primary function it will be put to. I intend to make something similar to this one I used recently on a course with Owen Jones- the cumbrian Swill maker


  1. Recently been on a course at Clissett wood and heard some interesting stories about your course...
    Not much good with sloes around here but ok with rose hips so I'll swop you a recipe.


  2. haha I can guess the topic of conversation re our course Mark!! I think I'm going to apply for the developement week because I promised Liz and Ro some Elm. I,ve just made another batch of Sloe Gin as my lad has just started Uni and I can see it being very popular there- lovely stuff. Blackthorn is very abundant up here and this year and last yielded bumper crops.
    Cheers John