How to Use a Shave Horse

How to Use a Shave Horse - Handyman

A shave horse is a traditional tool that is used for green wood projects. The shave horse is used to hold a length of wood while that wood is being shaped and worked on with a spoke shave or drawknife. The shaving horse got its name from the fact that it is designed to resemble a horse, having legs and a flat surface that the user mounts in order to operate the tool.

Material Used

The ideal material used with a shave horse is green wood, which is any timber that has been recently cut or fallen from trees after a storm and not yet seasoned. Green wood is easy to shape using hand tools since it is soft, due to its high moisture content.

Using a Shave Horse

You’re probably wondering now how to use a shave horse.

1. First of all, a shave horse is foot operated to allow the hands of the woodworker to be free to shape a piece of wood.

2. To use it, the worker must first mount the bed or plank. From each side of the shave horse, there’s a bar extending from under it. The worker must place each foot on each of the bar’s end.

3. When the feet push the bar forward, the wood being worked on is clamped by a wedge above the bed against another bar. The wood is released when the feet are removed from the underside bar.

4. By adjusting the wedge, the worker can quickly reposition the wood as necessary during the shaving.

What Can You Make with a Shave Horse?

Now that you have an idea how to use a shave horse, you may be interested to give it a try to create your own wood projects. A shave horse is typically used to create round shapes from square wooden pieces. Some of the items commonly made using shave horses are chair legs, brooms, wooden spoons, walking sticks, and tent pegs.

Shave Horse Safety

One very important thing when learning how to use a shave horse is safety. It is quite safe to use as long as you learn its correct usage. Also, always be responsible if using any dangerous tool while on a shave horse. However, never use a circular saw while sitting astride a shave horse.

If you would like to have a shave horse built for you by a professional, let TalkLocal help you find the best professional. Contact us and we’ll get you in touch with competent professionals quickly and for free.

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