By Bob Duncan
If you have an angle grinder, you need the new Arbortech TurboShaft. It will speed up almost any carving you do.
I find the TurboShaft easier to control than the traditional router carvers usually use to remove the background for a relief carving. It will not fit into the tighter areas you could slip a router with a small bit into, but the TurboShaft allows you to remove wood on an angle to begin tapering and rounding elements, which is not safe to do with a router. It also works for removing
excess wood on a carving in the round (useful if you don’t have a band saw). For larger carvings, it can carve gouge-like grooves for eye sockets, hair texture, or other details.
The TurboShaft is a scaled-down version of Arbortech’s full-size carbide disk. It features two small carbide cutters on a 3/4″-diameter shaft that attaches right to the angle grinder. With the tool, I had no trouble carving everything from pine construction lumber to hard maple. The tool does all of the work.
The depth sleeve included with the kit does its job when you’re carving letters or the background in a relief carving. I thought it got in the way during other tasks, so I removed it—it comes off easily thanks to a hex screw.
The TurboShaft is available for $109. For more information, call 866-517-7869, or visit www.arbortechusa.com.