You can't go wrong with a set of wood chisels. Chisels are essential for any carpenter, and they can make all the difference in what projects come out looking great--or not so much. They're the perfect tool to have around for any DIY project, and you'll never regret investing in them! If you're looking for the best wood chisels that will last forever without breaking your budget, we've got just what you need. Check out our list below and get ready to start shopping!
Table of Contents
- Top Picks for the Best Woodworking Chisels
- Best Chisel Set Comparison
- Wood Chisels Buying Guide: What to Look for in a Wood Chisel?
- View 7 of the Top Rated Wood Chisel Reviews
- 1. REXBETI Premium Wood Chisel Set
- 2. VonHaus Premium Chisel Set for Woodworking.
- 3. Hurricane Wood Chisel Set
- 4. IRWIN M444SB6N Marples Chisel Set for Woodworking
- 5. GREBSTK Professional Wood Chisel Tool Sets
- 6. STANLEY 16-401 Chisel Set
- 7. EZARC Wood Chisel Tool Sets
- Frequently Asked Questions about Wood Chisels
- Can I use wood chisels on stone?
- Can I use wood chisels on a lathe?
- Can you use wood chisels on metal?
- What type of steel is used for wood chisels?
- What do you use to sharpen wood chisels?
- What size chisels should I buy?
- Which is the more popular type of wood chisel, forged or ground?
- How often should I sharpen my chisels?
- How do you store wooden chisels?
Top Picks for the Best Woodworking Chisels
Best Overall | REXBETI Premium Wood Chisel Set
6pcs Chisel Set | Sharpening Set | CR-V Steel Blade | Strong Grip Handle
Best Professional | VonHaus Premium Chisel Set
Heat Treated | Ergonomic | Storage Case | Domestic and Professional Use
Best Budget | Hurricane Wood Chisel Set
Premium Material | Surface Treating | High Impact Handle | Durable
Best Paring Chisels | IRWIN M444SB6N Marples Chisel Set
Slim | Contoured Handle | Carbon Steel Blade | 6-Piece
Best for Beginner | GREBSTK Professional Wood Chisel Tool Sets
Sturdy | Beech Handles | Comfortable | Strongest | Lightweight
Best for the Money | STANLEY 16-401 Chisel Set
Superior Sharpness | Hardwood Handle | Comfort | Leather Pouch | 5-Piece
Best for Any Application | EZARC Wood Chisel Tool Sets
Professional Design | Sturdy & Durable | Accurate Sharpening | Ashtree Handle
Best Chisel Set Comparison
REXBETI Premium Wood Chisel Set
Heat-Treated Cr-V Alloy Blades
VonHaus Premium Chisel Set
Hurricane Wood Chisel Set
IRWIN M444SB6N Marples Chisel Set
High Carbon Solid Forged Steel
GREBSTK Professional Wood Chisel Tool Sets
Chrome Vanadium Steel + Beech
Sturdy Beech Wood Handles
STANLEY 16-401 Chisel Set
Durability and razor sharp precision
EZARC Wood Chisel Tool Sets
Chrome vanadium Blade with Black Walnut Handle
Prestigious Wooden Storage Box
Wood Chisels Buying Guide: What to Look for in a Wood Chisel?
This article is a wood chisel buying guide. It will help you choose the best wood chisel for your budget and projects. Once you get familiar with the quality of different chisels, it will be easier to make a better choice when buying tools.
Buying high-quality wood chisels mean purchasing a set that would last for decades or even centuries. They do not need much maintenance, and if properly stored (sharp and covered), they can stay in good shape longer than we can live. This, of course, depends on what type of steel was used to make them and how well they were heat-treated - more on that in a bit.
There are different types of wood chisels, but we will stick with the most popular ones: turning chisels, flat/bevel edge paring chisels and square edge mortise chisels. This guide does not cover carving gouges and veiner tools.
As you can see in the diagram above, the cutting edges of these three types of chisels look very much alike. A high-angle line at the top cuts into the material and a low-angled one below it (on square mortise and bevel edge paring) or on its back (on turning).
Turning chisel uses a higher cutting angle to cut quickly across the grain, while holding a lower angle helps prevent tear-out.
Paring Chisel has a very thin blade that takes away extremely small bits of wood, mostly across the grain. The low cutting angle helps it slide between closely set fibers so you can remove material without damaging surrounding ones. Square edge mortise chisels are used for heavy-duty tasks like chopping square holes or cleaning out rounded corners. The high cutting angle allows both - cross grain and end grain cuts.
Wood chisel quality is usually defined by steel grade and geometry of the blade and how well they were heat treated. However, steel grades do not mean much when it comes to performance. Poorer steel would hold a better edge due to the higher percentage of carbon in its composition. But high carbon content means the steel will be more brittle and prone to break. Thus, while some chisels manufactured in Asia may use lower-end steels like A2 (used in axes and knives), better ones are made with European or American steels like O1 (Swedish) and White (American). These grades tend to combine good edge holding abilities of carbon steel with toughness that comes from higher alloy content.
The next thing that affects the cutting performance of a chisel is blade geometry. The bigger the angle between the high-angle and low-angle line at the top, the bigger the difference in the cutting force applied. So, all other things being equal, we would choose larger angles for cutting harder materials and smaller ones for softer woods. On the other hand, a very small angle would give a bit of spring to the blade so it would resist being pushed too much and stay in contact with wood longer.
Angles around 25 degrees are good for most types of woods, but I personally tend to choose 28-degree chisels as they offer a bit more control and can be used on end grain without risk of breaking or, worse - rolling over into your hand! When it comes to the overall surface area of the cutting edge, smaller angles (20-30 degrees) will provide a sharper bladed that does not need constant resharpening, while bigger ones (35-40 degrees) require less force produce the less aggressive cut.
Sharpness is another important thing. Like I said earlier, poor steels may hold an edge better because of higher carbon content, but they can not be sharpened as easily and will need more frequent touch-ups. On the other hand, chisels with harder steel would only require little work on a fine whetstone before you could use them on your project.
Pair of good quality chisels is something every woodworker should have in their workshop (if I had to pick one tool out of my whole arsenal, it'd be there). They make delicate cuts on thin pieces that our bench planes simply can not do and allow us to clean up grooves that we already routed with a router or filled with dowel jigs. Grab yourself some high-quality ones and find out for yourself how much difference they make.
That about covers primary things to look for in a wood chisel. Chisels are simple tools, so there are not too many variables to consider. Just pick good brands with decent reviews and use them only on clean, oiled wood. Incorrect treatment of blades can ruin your whole day very easily!
View 7 of the Top Rated Wood Chisel Reviews
1. REXBETI Premium Wood Chisel Set
Using a good quality chisel in wood carving is a beginner's or professional's best investment. This set from REXBETI provides you with ten great tools to get started and for a very reasonable price.
Each tool has been made with a high-quality stainless steel blade that provides a long-lasting cutting edge. The handles are made from beechwood and shaped ergonomically to give maximum balance and control when using them.
REXBETI 10pc Premium Wood Chisel Set is the best wood carving chisel. You can create your unique designs with this premium 10-piece wood carving set. Made in Japan and Italy from the highest quality materials for long-lasting performance - these chisels are sure to last!
The bottom of each handle is fitted with brass ferrules to protect from splitting from impact from another metal hammer or mallet.
They come in their case along with leather belt loops which makes carrying them around easily if required; however, this would need to be a consideration as they are a little bulky.
The blades vary between 23mm to 49mm thickness, giving you a good variety of cuts required for the job. Unfortunately, they do not come sharpened; however, I found them to be very easy to sharpen with a standard sharpening stone, and within minutes they were ready to use again.
This is the best professional wood chisels and the perfect tool for any professional woodwork enthusiast. With a set of chisels ranging from 2mm to 12 mm in thickness, you will be able to create intricate detail with your project or build without sacrificing edge quality!
I spent a few hours carving on oak, pine and mahogany blocks from my scrap pile and was surprised at how well these chisels performed without any noticeable damage or loss of cutting edge.
They could have been a little lighter, but after a while, I got used to having a little more wood in my hands when using them, overall it shouldn't put anyone off purchasing this set as they have to be one of the best quality sets I have used at this price range.
If you are looking for good quality, accurate chisel set, I highly recommend these from REXBETI for high-quality tools; they represent great value. They would also make an excellent gift for any woodworker or carver in your life.
Get your chiseling game up to speed with this budget-friendly set. Get the perfect cuts every time without having to worry about losing time or spending all that dough on a single chisel.
2. VonHaus Premium Chisel Set for Woodworking.
Finally, a set of tools that are up to your professional standards! This VonHaus chisel set would make any woodworker hoot with joy. It's the last chisel you'll ever want or need - it even includes ten premium blades for cutting tasks that nobody should have to do without them.
This durable tungsten steel product lasts forever! Never again will you have to go back several times just because one blade has some minor defects in it - these premium blades are top quality, so they stay sharp and don't dull easily. In addition, these beautifully crafted knives are crafted with metal handles for easier handling during long working hours!
The VonHaus Chisel Set will make your woodturning projects come to life. These tools are designed with a chamfer edge that helps you create sharp detail and attractive shapes when molding or filleting, while the ultra-hard steel takes on any bearing needed for precision spinning without fear of damage!
This is the best woodturning chisels around. With its easy-to fit design, it's a snap to change from one size of tool to another when faced with different projects or challenges - no more wasted time searching for lost tools!
3. Hurricane Wood Chisel Set
Have you ever tried working with a dull tool? It's not easy at all. So give your woodworking the edge it deserves with this incredible 4-piece Wood Chisel Set made of drop forged chrome-vanadium steel blades for durability and heat-treated for edge retention. It also included blade guards to protect both you and the blade while you work so that your projects can stay cutting smooth!
Don't be caught without the tools you need to get the job done. Hurricane Wood Chisel Set is perfect for all sorts of tasks that require some light cutting or carving, whether it's woodworking or just finishing a task around the house.
This tool is a must-have in any workshop. The chisels are durable and designed for heavy-duty work. They'll be able to cut through all types of wood, even laminated or wrapped materials, without breaking a sweat! You won't go wrong with the Hurricane set on your team.
Hurricane Wood Chisel Set is the best inexpensive wood chisels. Many people think that expensive equipment will get you better results, but this product has proved them wrong!
You'll be hard-pressed to find a better set of chisels than the Hurricane Wood Chisel Set. This affordable tool is perfect for beginners or experts who want an efficient way to dig out their projects from wood easily!
4. IRWIN M444SB6N Marples Chisel Set for Woodworking
Say goodbye to hammer and nail torture. You, too, can get professional results with IRWIN M444SB6N Marples Chisel Set. With six chisels of different sizes—3/8", 1/2", 5/8", 3/4", 1" and 1-1/2"—you'll have the right tool for any fine woodworking task you undertake.
Traditional woodworking isn't easy; it requires precise knives that chop and carve through hard surfaces like butter. From shaping tiger-oak to keying down maple, the only way to do it right is with high-quality hand tools such as Irwin Marples Chisel Set, so you don't have grooves in your finished product. This set of tools includes a wide variety of blades from 1/4" up to 1 inch so you can handle any job, big or small.
Moreover, these chisel handles were designed for comfort and control during operation because nobody likes blisters from mallet striking! The slim, contoured design makes working easier on the hands while still being able to maintain flex.
The IRWIN Chisel Set is the best quality wood chisels. It has marvelous designs on its handles that make them look more beautiful and elegant, so you can enjoy using this set for many years to come!
5. GREBSTK Professional Wood Chisel Tool Sets
Did you know that if woodworking without a professional-grade toolset such as GREBSTK, one would need much more skill than just mere carving?
The GREBSTK professional wood chisel toolsets are the perfect companion for any carpenter or artist looking to get crafting.
The chisels are made of beech wood and have a steel hoop that grips tightly to your hand, making them comfortable for extended uses. The set includes sizes 1/4 inch, 1/2 inch, 3/4 inch, and 1 inch, so you can tackle any job at home without having to search for additional tools. Whether you have time today or next month, these chisels will get you through your project with ease - all while being durable enough for future use!
The GREBSTK wood chisel sets come in a wide variety of sizes for all your trimming needs. Whether you're an amateur or professional carpenter, these tools can make any job easier! The beech wood handles are lightweight and comfortable, while the stainless-steel hoop will provide you with the sturdiest grip. These inventive chisels are great to have on hand for any project around town!
GREBSTK Professional Wood Chisel Tool Sets is the best wood turning chisels for beginner. These chisels will help you cut your projects with ease, and they come in a variety of shapes so that there's one to fit what you're working on! GREBSTK Professional Wood Chisels will help you make those beautiful pieces that we know and love, from furniture to intricate carvings!
If you're unsatisfied with your current chisel and want to upgrade, we highly recommend this set. Not only will it help in the process, but having a zipped bag to protect your investment is essential. You can't go wrong with our GREBSTK brand!
6. STANLEY 16-401 Chisel Set
One problem any craftsman or technician always faces is getting their hands on chisels of the right size. Stanley has solved this issue with its Bailey Chisel Set, which includes five different sizes, each perfectly fitted for your needs. It's the perfect addition to the carpenter, woodworker, mechanic, or anyone who can trace their trade back to yesteryear.
These are high-quality products manufactured in Sheffield, England and offer unsurpassed quality with stained beech handles and an upgraded brass ferrule designed to only help experienced tradesmen achieve perfection. In addition, the improved blade finish includes new grinding centers that allow users a chance to visualize themselves as they use these beautiful chisels on tasks at work or at home.
This extremely powerful and versatile crafting tool is perfect for those who need to make their dream project a reality. This Stanley 16-401 Chisel Set should not be overlooked with its upgraded design and quality craftsmanship. This set includes the following five different sized chisels: 1/4-Inch (6mm), 1/2-Inch (12mm), 3/4-Inch (19mm), 1-Inch (24mm) and 1-1/4 Inches (32 mm). From beginners to experienced carpenters, these tools are sure to live up to any expectations.
STANLEY 16-401 Chisel Set is the best wood chisels for the money. These hand tools have an excellent balance between price and quality, allowing you to work efficiently without sacrificing decreased accuracy in your projects while saving money along with time!
These heavy-duty Bailey Chisels are designed to craft absolute perfection with precision and grace. So whether you're a novice looking for an excellent beginner kit or an experienced tradesman who demands nothing less than high quality, look no further than STANLEY 16-401 Chisel Set. Choose between five different sizes at a great price!
7. EZARC Wood Chisel Tool Sets
Need to cut that extra-made piece of wood perfectly in half, but your saw won't cut through? Then, you need the EZARC Wood Chisel Tool Sets! The six pieces of sturdy, well-made carving blades are ideal for any challenging woodworking project.
Thanks to this set's high-quality steel, you can use it immediately after opening and easily cut mortises or sweep away glue effortlessly. In addition, the beveled ground at 45 degrees with an extremely sharp edge makes these tools reliable enough for professional users in any industry.
Wood chisels are essential for woodworking projects, and the set from EZARC is a high-quality take. Made from chrome-vanadium steel with a hardness of HRC 60, these instruments have durable blades that will help them stand up to any project you might take on.
You can carve your way to greatness with this chisel set. The toolset has an edge that will cut the corner of any project and allow for smooth and clean mortises and other carvings.
These tools feature finely beveled edges that won't shred the wood fibers while cutting out a mortise or chopping off a corner. The affordable set includes six artisanal quality carving blades in an assortment of shapes to work on any size task. Dipping into your collection of wood chisels might feel like you're peeling away at all your budget, but this product isn't too expensive!
You can't go wrong with this best wood chisel set. It has a lightweight design and comfortable handle for all-day use, so you'll have plenty of time to do meaningful things like crafting or working on your home remodel project!
Frequently Asked Questions about Wood Chisels
Can I use wood chisels on stone?
It's a bad idea. Wood chisels are not hard enough to work on granite or marble and will break from the pressure if you try. They can be used on softer stones, however.
There is a specialized tool for every job! The purpose of a chisel is to pry away chunks of stone with pressure applied at an angle. If you want to carve into stone, it would be better to combine a hammer and mallet.
Can I use wood chisels on a lathe?
You can use wood chisels on a lathe with little to no risk of ruining the sharp edge.
A lathe operator only causes damage to their chisel points when they use them like an axe, instead of placing the point in the material and gently tapping it. Woodworkers know this, which is why you usually see tool-makers make multiple sets of tools for general workshop duties (axe, hammer, plane) and smaller sets specifically designed for delicate work (Chisel). After all, it doesn't often happen that you need to smash through your chair legs with your hammer! So if you're using your tool as you should be, then there are practically zero risks that one or two knocks will incapacitate the major function of your chisel. It also doesn't matter if you're using high or low speeds since the feed rate and cut depth are not accelerated enough to cause damage to the edges.
Can you use wood chisels on metal?
It depends on the metal and how hard your chisel is.
For example, to remove a joint from a hollow sphere, one would have to chip away at the metal along that joint - which may or may not be possible. One way of achieving this might be by drilling holes in the sphere's surface and channeling them back upwards towards the joint line with a sharp edge. In any case, it most certainly can't be done with a regular wood chisel because it won't have the necessary rigidity for this type of job.
What type of steel is used for wood chisels?
The type of steel used for wood chisels is typically carbon steel. This means the blade is composed of iron and carbon mixed with a small number of additives.
Carbon steels come in two types, oil hardening and non-oil hardening. Oil Hardening refers to steels that require added azomethane or other organic materials to prevent them from cold working when they are forged after being heated into malleable bars at temperatures over 450 degrees Fahrenheit (232 degrees Celsius). Non-Oil Hardening Carbon Steel does not use any heat treatment during forging, so it can be used in localized applications where malleable tools are required without machining the piece post-heating.
What do you use to sharpen wood chisels?
As long as the chisel is being used on wood, I recommend using a sharpening stone to sharpen your chisels.
As with any sharpened tool, one should use caution when cutting anything other than wood. One should also avoid exposing the metal of the blade to anything acidic. For example, be sure not to scrub your tools in vinegar or citrus juices! This can lead to rusting tools and damaging blades by impairing their ability to hold an edge or cleanly slice through the material. Clean them instead with soap and water while rubbing across the top surface without allowing surface contact between other surfaces (e.g., steel meets metal).
What size chisels should I buy?
The size of a chisel usually dictates its use. 1/8 inch is a popular beginner's choice, as it is versatile and good for delicate work. The next step up would be the 3/8 inch, which has an increased weight and can do tough jobs with the right technique. 1/4 inch is better for heavy-duty finishes or stone cutting because it has an increased surface area on its edge to help cut through material more effectively. For those seeking the bluntest tool possible, 1-ounce chisels are available from 1" to 2". The heavier weights reduce slippage and give more focus and control in finer tasks like shaping wood or creating joints between materials like glass and stone.
Which is the more popular type of wood chisel, forged or ground?
Grinding to fit the shape of a special tool is more popular because it's easier and faster. Forging, which is hammering metal into shape, takes longer but produces more durable tools to take on different tasks. However, limitations in the metallurgy of ancient times meant forging couldn't produce alloys with desirable properties, so ground chisels were originally preferred by woodworkers largely because they could shave fine finishes. At the same time, rough-surfaced forged tools would tear away too much surface area or embed curls along their edge notches for grain to easily pass through them when cutters are needed in tight spaces or inside radius curves; however, forged steel eventually became the norm when advances in modern metallurgy allowed for reliable precision grinding to achieve the same desired results.
How often should I sharpen my chisels?
You should sharpen your chisels as often as you feel appropriate for the work you will be doing.
In an informal poll, most people said they used their chisels about 1-4 times a year. Some woodworkers said as little as once every six months, all the way up to 2 or more per day. It's also important to sharpen them correctly if you want to keep that angle intact. Too small of a sharpening angle can put a lot of stress on your wrist and hand muscles, whereas too large of an angle will cause chatter marks in your surface wood, which is not desirable at all!
How do you store wooden chisels?
Wooden chisels should be stored in a well-ventilated, dry environment. Wood will absorb moisture from the air if not cared for correctly and can severely warp or rot as a result. In humid environments, store wooden chisels by placing them pointed side down to minimize exposure to moisture. In addition, wooden chisels should be allowed to "weather" outdoors from time to time so that they don't develop an excessive build-up of oil or other substances on their surface.
So, now you know what to look for in a wood chisel. We hope this guide has been helpful, and we wish you the best of luck with your next project! We would love to hear your thoughts on the best wood chisels in our comments section below! Happy crafting!