Welcome to November's Tool of the Month blog post; this month its a quick look at mortice chisels!
Mortice chisels are designed to be used to cut mortices (pretty obvious clue in the name) which are the square or rectangular 'hole' parts of mortice and tenon joints.
Cutting a mortice by hand involves the chisel being repeatedly struck with a mallet to 'chop' out waste and then subjected to leverage forces to clear out the loose waste. Therefore the mortice chisel looks completely different to a bevel edge bench chisel, with a thick almost square long blade and chunky handle.
Today mortices are mostly cut using a morticing machine which has an auger bit spinning inside a square hollow chisel, this is a lot faster than cutting the joint by hand. Routers and drills can also be used to cut mortices.
My mortice chisels are made by American company Lie-Nielsen; they are lighter and smaller than traditional mortice chisels and are designed more for cutting (or squaring up) smaller mortices found in furniture making.
Thats all for October, look out for November's blog post!
Happy Halloween 🎃
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Here you can see what I have been up to in the workshop, gain an insight into my work and some of the many tools I use to make each piece of bespoke furniture.