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Bender Heaven

6 7 essential equipment tools of the trade Having the right equipment about you will always make lighter work of any task, and benderbuilding is no exception. First you will need a small bow saw, the triangular variety being your best bet as it gets into places other bow saws wont reach. It should have a green wood blade, the type with a circular recess every few teeth for removing the thick sawdust fibres from living wood. A bow saw with a straight sawtoothed blade may suffice, but it will probably stick a bit as its designed for seasoned wood. Next you will need a billhook or small axe, the sharper the better. The old handforged tools are usually far superior to the modern mass produced plate steel equivalents and easier to get sharp, and keep sharp. You can use an anglegrinder or a metal file to get a sharp but short lived edge, then using a whetstone a bit of an art you can hone its sharpness. Make the cutting edge taper gently rather than it having shoulders, and it should slice through green wood pole like a knife through organic goats cheese. The only other tools you may need for a standard woven bender are a bit of string and a knife to cut it with. Sisal or old bootlaces can provide the cordage and brands such as Taylors or Opinel can provide a decent blade. If you are building a slottogether kit bender an auger and bit or some kind of drill may be necessary unless you have the time and patience to use a hot iron spike. You may also find that a large Gclamp or some kind of vice will make the job a little easier. A bow saw, a billhook or small axe, a penknife and a few bits of string are all the tools you need to construct a bender
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