Tool Test: Blue Spruce Firmer Chisels
By Christopher Schwarz
Perhaps the last tools I ever expected to come out of the Blue Spruce Toolworks are the most traditional set of modern bench chisels I have ever used.
After all, Dave Jeske of Blue Spruce has spent all of his toolmaking career building gorgeous tools that have a definite modern and West Coast flavor. His knives, chisels, awls and even his mallets are about as close to contemporary sculpture as you can get (and I mean that as the highest compliment imaginable).
But Dave’s latest chisels are complete throwbacks – they have 18th- and 19th- century design details, use old-fashioned high-carbon steel and they have thin blades that remind you of using an excellent old firmer chisel.
But like all of Dave’s tools, the fit and finish is taken to a level that few manufacturers (or even custom toolmakers) can ever achieve.
So let’s take these chisels apart and find out what makes them work.