Bob Reitmeyer, Whittler @

Bob Reitmeyer, Supplier of Wood Crafts to Scouts

Tips for Adults

How to Teach Woodcarving to Boy Scouts

BEFORE YOU START, you will need the following:

  • Pieces of soft wood cut about 3/4" x 3/4" by 5" at least. The best kinds of wood are Basswood (not Balsa) or soft white or sugar pine. Use for practice, carving to the padded thumb, and then the push away cut on each end.
  • Knives with small blades no longer than 1 1/2 inches in length. For best results, they must be razor sharp! Consider wrapping masking tape around the base of longer blades when using for carving only.
  • Masking tape to make simple thumb pads for the thumb of the knife holding hand. Simply wrap it sticky side out around the thumb and over the top. Then sticky side in the same way until you have a removable thumb pad so that you can carve to your padded thumb. The most natural way to carve is to the padded thumb. Think of it as a thimble used for sewing.
  • Boys that will listen carefully to instructions. Think about what they are doing. Not talk or distract others in any way!
  • Practice all the carving cuts before you demonstrate them.
  • CHOOSE THE EASIEST PROJECTS for the first time. (Suggest my #63 Whistle Kit, then #41 Arrow Point.)