[The] offset chisel allows paring nearly flat on the work without the fingers getting in the way, and gives better visibility when making vertical cuts.
Aldren A. Watson, Hand Tools, Their Ways and Workings, 1982
Someone asked me the other day if I liked the chisels that are sold by Luthiers Mercantile Inc, click here for the website, and I replied that I do, I own three of them now and I may buy more. Maybe.
These are still my favorite chisels, vintage ones that I have picked up at flea markets over the years.
The chisels (my one inch wide Samson chisel is not in this picture) are Keen Cutter, Union Hardware, Stiletto, Stanley, and um, I can't remember the other brand. That doesn't matter, these chisels work for me.
Nothing fancy, they hold an edge and if they get dull after a while I take a break and sharpen them.
A violin maker once tried to get me to buy his set of Berg chisels, he extolled their virtues for 10 minutes and when he took a breath, I asked him why he was selling them.
"I don't need them anymore, I have other ones that suit me better," was his answer.
I didn't buy them, a set of straight chisels doesn't excite me.
One thing that I enjoy about these chisels is that they all have an offset, which makes sense to me because when you hold a chisel the line from wrist to radius and ulna is not straight.
A person should buy the tools they like and can afford to help make woodworking fun, enjoyable and challenging!
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