Rasps and files are among the most overlooked hand tools, yet they are also some of the most useful for shaping and smoothing wood. Rasps are ideal for removing stock fast without the risk of tearout. Files are used to smooth away the shaping marks left by rasps or power tools. Rifflers are small rasps that come in a variety of shapes and profiles to fit into tight spaces. Understanding the technique, maintenance, and variety of these tools will help you to get the most out of them.

Lonnie Bird  is an author and woodworking instructor . Visit him online at  www.lonniebird.com .

From Fine Woodworking #175