Orford v Wood

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DanBow

Nomad
Nov 29, 2010
269
11
Wrexham, North Wales
Hello all,

I'm getting a spoon carving knife. I've seen the one I want but they are out of stock so I'm on the waiting list.

The one I am waiting for is made by Robin Wood - Linky

I've read some reviews and watched the videos online and I'm happy with it but as I say they are out of stock at the moment. While I'm waiting I started looking around for some others and came across Ben & Lois Orford. Linky


They do a similar knife at a similar price so does anyone have any real world experience of either? Or is there something else I should be looking at. Not the Mora though. lol


Ta
 

Wayne

BCUK Welfare Officer
Mod
Dec 7, 2003
3,460
320
48
West Sussex
www.forestknights.co.uk
I have a spoon knife from ben , it's great. Holds its edge , easy to sharpen and errr cuts wood
Interesting as I have 4 from Ben and several of my instructors have a couple.

I’d say they are a pig to sharpen and hold their edge as well as a blunt thing.

Not a patch on my Nic Westermanns or my Dave Budds. Even my VC Works holds a better edge. I have used the Robin Wood but don’t own one. Cut reasonably well.

My favourite spoon tool is my lee stoffer Scorp followed by my VC works Scorp. I also like the Gilles Tools.

Pure spoon knife Nic Westermann followed by Dave Budd then VC Works and Sarv D.

Not keen on my flex cut Spoon knife.

I have 6 or so frosts. They hold an edge an work well for the price. Avoid the double edged version.

I’m looking to add a couple more spoon knives soon.
 
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Kepis

Bushcrafter through and through
Jul 17, 2005
6,288
1,159
Sussex
All of my personal carving tools are by Ben Orford, except my Nic Westerman Twca Cam.

I've used Bens blades for years , easy to sharpen, hold a wicked edge, even in dry wood such as the seasoned Beech I've been using of late, and the handles are comfortable for long term use, ie they don't create hot spots or fatigue.

Bens customer service is second to none should you encounter a rare problem. If you wanted a longer handle try one of his Mocatugans, I have two with an external bevel which is great for spoons bowls etc and one with the internal bevel which is better suited to planing cuts like a traditional Indian crook knife.

I've used a Robin Wood, didn't like it as I felt the blade had too much flex in it and it was prone to blade chatter.
 
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DanBow

Nomad
Nov 29, 2010
269
11
Wrexham, North Wales
@Wayne Sorry I missed your reply.

I went to Nics site first as I vaguely familiar with his work, I can only presume from bb days. He doesn't list many tools as in stock as he now has a waiting list. I just a had a look at the Lee Stoffer. Wow, that's a bit pricey. Well, it is for a first one anyway. I am really liking the Gilles Tools. They do a set for just shy of £100, with a gouge too. Have you got any of the Gilles or just have experience with them?

@Kepis Thanks. I did see the mocatugans but wasn't sure about the external bevel!

I'm glad that there are a few more to choose from but my head is boggled now! lol
 

salad

Full Member
Sep 24, 2008
1,777
131
47
In the Mountains
Thanks @salad how do you get on with the handle? I suppose that's the biggest thing. I think the Robin Wood one is longer.
The robin wood is defiantly longer although I have never used one of his , my glove size is a 12 .I have big hands and never had a problem using my spoon knife . It travels with me in my rucksack .
Although if I was buying one to use at home in my shed then I can see that a longer handle may give a bit more flexibility .
Both ben and robin are great craftsmen, I don't think you would go wrong with a product from either
 
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salad

Full Member
Sep 24, 2008
1,777
131
47
In the Mountains
Interesting as I have 4 from Ben and several of my instructors have a couple.

I’d say they are a pig to sharpen and hold their edge as well as a blunt thing.

Not a patch on my Nic Westermanns or my Dave Budds. Even my VC Works holds a better edge. I have used the Robin Wood but don’t own one. Cut reasonably well.

My favourite spoon tool is my lee stoffer Scorp followed by my VC works Scorp. I also like the Gilles Tools.

Pure spoon knife Nic Westermann followed by Dave Budd then VC Works and Sarv D.

Not keen on my flex cut Spoon knife.

I have 6 or so frosts. They hold an edge an work well for the price. Avoid the double edged version.

I’m looking to add a couple more spoon knives soon.
My orford crook knife has a shallow curve , I prefer these as I find this style better to field sharpen

20190124_185214.jpg

I have not had a problem with this one as regards to edge holding , I can shave hair with mine and it holds the edge for a reasonable amount of time . A quick stop on the edge of the strop brings is back up most of the time
 
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salad

Full Member
Sep 24, 2008
1,777
131
47
In the Mountains
It is the flatter type that I am looking at too. It just seems a bit more versatile. I could be completely wrong though. lol
I like the flatter type ,I find it's easier to get a smother finish in the bowl of the spoon or cup . But that's just me me , other people may get on better with the more traditional spoon knife

Although you will probably remove wood faster with the traditional more aggressive curved spoon knife
 
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Kepis

Bushcrafter through and through
Jul 17, 2005
6,288
1,159
Sussex
It is the flatter type that I am looking at too. It just seems a bit more versatile. I could be completely wrong though. lol
Ive three of the flatter hooks from Ben that i use for shallow spoons and finishing cuts, for roughing out i use either the ext bevel mocatugan, or medium hook from Ben, but more often than not use my twca cam

Ive two right handers and one left from Ben, the left is used very occasionally when i have a bit of problematic grain, the rights, i use all the time, i have two as i wore the first one out, but it still gets used from time to time as the curve is slighty shallower than the later one and the blade is much thinner through years of use.
 
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Tiley

Full Member
Oct 19, 2006
2,035
148
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Gloucestershire
I have a couple of Ben Orford's spoon knives and a Lee Stoffer one with a blade by Nic Westerman. They all work well but, as is so often the case, I am more used to Ben's knives and so tend to use them more frequently. They sharpen up easily and, when in that state, are hard to beat. I also like the handles on them and find their compact geometry very easy to handle. The Stoffer/Westerman one is a lovely tool but is perhaps better on large projects, like ladles and kuksas.
 

Wayne

BCUK Welfare Officer
Mod
Dec 7, 2003
3,460
320
48
West Sussex
www.forestknights.co.uk
I own two sets of Gilles tools. A 6 piece and a 11 or 12 piece. I forget. I have a lot of carving tools. I use the gouges a lot.

I would put your name on the nic Westermann waiting list. It will probably be 18 months till you reach the top. By then you will have a better idea what you want and could have saved s few pennies. I’m perpetually on his waiting list.

I haven’t tried any of Ben’s recent stuff. Might have improved over the tools I have. Which are about 15 years old. I do use his Indian Crook knife a lot. The shape is very good on bow handles and canoe paddles.

I am going to buy a few pieces next from Belzeboo Crafts. I like the look of their work.
 

Tony

White bear (Admin)
Admin
Apr 16, 2003
22,134
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the Gilles tools are great value, I know a few people with them and they're nice.
I use a Del Stubbs (Pinewood Forge) set that I bought years ago for most things...
 
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