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Ashley Iles Mk.2 Butt Chisels

Ashley Iles Mk.2 Butt Chisels

Also known as American pattern bevel edge chisels, Ashley Iles butt chisels are superbly proportioned for chopping work. The short length makes them lighter and more nimble than a full size bench chisel and the top of the chisel stays within your peripheral vision so you don't have to keep switching your attention between the cutting edge and the handle.

If you like the proportions of Japanese Oire Nomi chisels but prefer a flat back, very finely bevelled sides and an unhooped handle, Ashley Iles butt chisels are an excellent choice

It is my belief that the name butt chisel stems from 'the butt end of an old chisel'. Although I have read conflicting hypotheses about the origin of the name it does make sense that a chisel with half the blade sharpened away and half of the handle used up becomes a preferred tool for all manner of jobs. It follows that at some stage someone would have asked to have a new set of chisels made like that and the next thing you know butt chisels have become a separate species.

Because Ashley Iles chisels are individually hand ground they are not subject to the same constraints as mechanised chisel manufacturers. The sides of the blades are beautifully fine, the backs are ground a few thou concave, so although they are well within the flatness tolerances required for fine joinery chisels, they are very easy to prepare and maintain.

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