The Taming of the Skew
Subtlety, not force, wins favor
Synopsis: No tool in a turner’s kit has greater potential for efficiency than the skew chisel — it planes surfaces smooth, cuts balls and beads, defines fillers and even makes coves, working with a precise, responsive touch. Yet the skew has a reputation for being the most unforgiving and unpredictable turning tool. Here, Mike Darlow explains its geometry and how to sharpen it. He also explains which materials are best for making skew chisels, how to handle them, and how to lay out cuts including V-cuts, rolling cuts, long-point cuts, and more. Detailed photos show how to use the skew chisel safely.
For each piece of wood, an efficient turner employs the minimum number of tools, each, if possible, only once. This means being able to use each tool for a variety of cuts. No tool in a turner’s kit has greater potential for this than the skew chisel—it planes…