How to make a chisel or gouge guard from a milk container, cardboard and rope…

We woodworkers have plenty of sharp tools in our possession. From chisels to gouges, from marking knifes and awls to compasses and drill bits.  The question of how to protect the sharp edges from damage, and how to protect ourselves from being hurt by them, is always in the air. Not always will you get a chisel guard with the tool and, in the case of specialty tools, you will probably receive none.  So, last month I came up with an idea to make a cheap and nice looking guard which can be tailored to protect and (keep at bay) almost any tool tip.

The ingredients I used can be found in every household: a milk carton and rope.  Milk cartons is tough and are supposed to be non-acidic, so it will not hurt the steel on your tools.

Basic recipes: I cut a piece of cardboard form an empty food container, such as a milk or soy-milk container. Half of it extends beyond the tip of the tool and half under it.



I fold it a few times around the tip of the tool, then fold the
extended half backwards and wrap a rope whipping around it….To learn
few techniques for rope endings (whipping) see the attached video



At this point you can decide to leave the whipping as is or to add another decorative knot to it…



Fancier technique: I cut a series of flaps at the end of the cardboard and gradually fold/tuck them in as the folding around of the cardboard progresses. I than use the rope ending technique as described before..



As you all found out securing chisel or other tool guards with duct tape is a short term measure; duct tape will eventually peel of and will leave a sticky gooey residues all over the place. My technique (I am sure I am not the first one who thought about it)  is clean and neat.



American Woodworker Blog
Yoav Liberman

About Yoav Liberman

Yoav S. Liberman is a woodworker and a teacher. His pieces have been featured in several woodworking books, most recently in Robin Wood’s CORES Recycled. Yoav teaches woodworking at the Rudolf Steiner School in Manhattan, and also frequently guest teaches in craft schools across the country.  Between 2003 and 2011 Yoav  headed the woodworking program at Harvard University's Eliot House. Yoav’s articles have appeared in American Woodworker and Woodwork Magazine. He frequently contributes woodworking web content to a number of digital publications   Yoav has a degree in architecture and later held two competitive residency programs: at The Worcester Center for Crafts in Massachusetts, and the Windgate Foundation Fellowship at Purchase College, New York. He lives in Chestnut Ridge NY.