Carving Knives

Guidelines shown below are for Included Angles (α).

Green wood carving can use a lower included angle (α) than when carving dry wood.

CB's USB Projection Calculator is recommended for calculating setup for Tormek knife jigs. (The simpler Projection Calculator is also still available. This one is web-based and does not require Excel.)

General Guidelines
Type α Grind Profile Notes Recommended
Tormek Jigs
Chip Carving Knife 20°
Concave or Slightly Convex

Could be as low as 15° or 16° included angle, especially on softer woods.

The Scandi grind can be "grabby" on the wood when slicing into it. The micro-bevel grind does not cut as cleanly.



General Carving Knife 20°
(see below)

Could be up to 25° included angle.

Sloyd Knife 22 - 25°
(see below)

Angle can go smaller or greater, depending on need.

The convex grind is preferred by some as it gives a radius from which to adjust the angle of attack. Others say differently. You will need to identify which you prefer.

Some versions of this knife do not have the same angle on each side (this is more common with those which are hand-made). This means the Bevel Angle (β) may not be 50% of the Included Angle (α).

It is advisable to use a Sharpie marker to ensure you are grinding the same angle as was delivered. Once you have achieved the angle that matches the grind, record it onto a label attached to the knife. This will enable you to repeat the grind easier next time (or at least make dialing it in faster).

Notes & Comments

Information regarding Grindstones

The shape of the grind used is a call best made by the tool's use, based on your own experience. Additional notes are available on separate web pages for Grind Profiles, and Micro / Secondary Bevels.

Online Calculators that can be used for sharpening knives.

More Information

Books & Papers

Videos & Presentations

Published Articles

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Remember : The goal of sharpening is to produce sharp tools, and these tools can injure you if mishandled. Safety measures should be followed to protect yourself and those in your shop. Be sure to read and follow all instructions from the manufacturer, and and utilize proper safety equipment. Never consume alcohol or anything that could impair your judgement before sharpening tools, or using sharp tools. Comments can be sent via eMail to me at