Lie Nielsen Small Bronze Spokeshave Review.
This will mark the first blog post on my new website (I hope you like it).
I purchased both the flat and the curved base spokeshaves directly from Lie Nielsen, I now prefer to deal direct with Lie Nielsen rather than one of their distributers over here in England.
I have found their idea of customer service to be vastly greater and more accommodating for their products than their English distributers, so in conclusion I would rather give my money to a company that cares about their product.
On with the review.
I have used a great many spokeshaves in the past, both metal and wooden for many different applications ranging from; chair making, through to planing up large solid oak table tops when a hand tooled look was required. They are a very adaptable tool, and can be put to work in places where only a shave will do. They do take a bit of getting used to, and can be a frustrating tool to use if not set up correctly. Sharpening a shaves iron will be easy for some and impossible for others, the best way that I have found is to make a wooden blade holder. At present and for the last couple of years I have been using my Grandfathers Record 151 shaves, prior to this a pair of Stanley 64s. I prefer my Stanley 64s if I’m honest but took to using my Grandfathers for a bit of nostalgia (he was a master chair maker by the way).
The reason I purchased the Lie Nielsen small Bronze Spokeshaves was a simple size issue, having used my fair share of shaves over the years I like them to be as small as possible. The Lie Nielsen’s are based on an Edward Preston & Sons pattern, they are made from bronze and come with an A2 iron fitted. The iron is quite a bit thicker, 3 mm, or in old money 1/8″. I have to say the addition of a thicker iron makes sharpening a small shave iron a lot easier, and acts as a great registration on the stone. It also makes the shave less likely to suffer from chatter in use, which I did get on occasions with my Stanleys when cleaning up table tops, not so with the L/Ns. So in use, are the Lie Nielsen’s any better? I would say for me yes, I have never used one of the pattern Prestons, but think I would of liked to. As you can see below they are tiny indeed, which if you saw my hands, you would think why would I want them to be so small? Its all about control with a spokeshave, the bigger they are the less control over them you have. I like a shave to be an extension of my hands and with the addition of a thicker iron, it makes these Lie Nielsen spokeshaves excellent indeed.
Thanks for looking, and I hope you like the new website.