~ Things to Know and" Do 22: For this reason, it is usual to make a beginner Whittle away from himself, but that is not always safe. Indeed, all the best whittlers in the world, including Northern Indians, Farriers, Wagonmakers, etc., whittle toward themselves, with the hand held palm up, the knife blade at the little ﬁnger side, using the pull of the arm instead of the push, thereby getting more power and better control. But this is sure, you should never whiltle toward the hand that is holding the wood. Always keep your knife sharp. It is a sign of a tenderfoot to have a dull knife, and of a trained Woodcrafter to have a keen one. To keep a knife sharp, it must be a good piece of steel and you must know how to sharpen it. The only way to get a good blade is to go to a good maker and pay a good price. The fancy knives that are corkscrew, toolchest, bootjack, and whistle all combined, are seldom of good steel. Old-timers prefer a white-handled knife as it is more readily found if dropped on the ground or in the water. The blade cannot be kept in good condition if used for any- thing but a wood cutter. Therefore, do not cut nails, metal, or softwood knots (especially hemlock knots) with it. Never stick the blade in the ﬁre. That would draw the tem- per and spoil the knife. . Do not abuse your knife by using it for a hammer, wedge, screwdriver, or pry. - Carry a little Whetstone or else a small ﬁle to keep your knife in good shape. .A pocket or shut-up knife is the only style worth carrying. The hunting knife or dagger has not enough use to—day to make it worth while. It is a proof of a good whittler if one can make half. a dozen ﬁreﬁghters in succession. A ﬁrelighter or fuzz-stick (see illus- tration) is a stick of soft wood about an inch thick or six or eight inches through, shaved into thin slivers which are still on the stick; that is, are one solid piece at one end and all thin slivers at the other. This can only be done if you have a sharp, strong knife, a well-selected piece of soft wood without knots in it, and a steady hand. Provided the wood is good, the ﬁre- lighter is perfect if not a sliver is loose or drops oﬁ. Use of Hatchet A good camper is known by his hatchet; if it is always sharp, and kept muzzled when travelling, the owner knows his business.
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