Historical information

A draw knife or drawing knife, draw shave, shaving knife is a traditional woodworking hand tool used to shape wood by removing shavings. It consists of a blade with a handle at each end. The blade is much longer along the cutting edge than it is deep (from cutting edge to back edge). It is pulled or "drawn" toward the user.
A draw knife is commonly used to remove large slices of wood for flat faceted work, to debark trees, or to create roughly rounded or cylindrical billets for further work on a lathe, or it can shave like a spokeshave plane, where finer finishing is less of concern than a rapid result. The thin blade lends itself to create complex concave or convex curves such as in making staves for barrels.


A specialised tool used in many different types of wood working and in the making of barrels, this type of tool has been used for many hundreds of years by coopers and other woodworking craftsmen all around the world. It is a tool that has not changed in design during this time and is still used today by craftsmen in the making of wooden barrels for the storage of wines etc.

Physical description

Draw knife with metal blade and two wooden handles

Inscriptions & markings