Woodworker's Central
Woodworker's Gazette
Gazette Archive 4/22/00

A book review: By Eric Smith

Title: Power Tools For Woodcarving

David Tippey

Published by: Sterling Publishing Co. Inc.
387 Park Avenue South
New York, NY 10016-8810
ISBN 1861081049
Price Softcover: $19.95 (Canada $29.95 )
144 color pages

The author, David Tippey, loses no time in explaining the thought behind using power tools for carving. He politely acknowledges hand carving and the skill it has required for eons. He then goes on to say the same skills are necessary for successfully carving with power tools. He even goes as far as to say that the Masters of old would have welcomed these new quicker ways. I myself can not vouch for said masters, but I can say that Mr. Tippey has done a fine job in giving an overview of power tools to be used in carving.

As with all the Sterling publications I have read, a chapter is devoted to health and safety. This I applaud, although I am guilty of ignoring it as well. But at least I have the knowledge, and this tempers the perils I am willing to subject myself too. There is a good deal of info about self filtering air masks for clean breathing. Also the usual helpful info on what to wear and electrical stuff. Commonplace yes, but also the most dangerous thing in a workshop in my humble opinion.

The book goes on to cover every thing from Micrometers and miniature turbines to wood burning implements. In between are chapters on Power Chisels, Power files, Angle Grinders, Die Grinders, Routers, Chain saws and even fixed machinery like Jointers, Planers, and Band saws. Now I am not a supreme woodcarver so I can not really critique Mr. Tippey's advice. But I can say as a reference it is good help, and inspiring in a "Oh you can do that with -insert your choice here-, gee I never thought of that!"

The book also has a little graph system to tell you about the suitability of tools to a predetermined set of tasks. While some might not find it very helpful, others, perhaps with less confidence, would find it very beneficial. The other illustrations and pictures are very helpful and demonstrate quite well what the author is trying to convey.

All in all I enjoyed reading POWER TOOLS FOR WOODCARVING and would recommend it to others.

Eric Smith

Editor's Note: Sterling Publishing has graciously donated several books for review which are passed on to our members free of charge in exchange for thoughtful, honest reviews. Thank You!

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