Neck, head, ears, eyes

When doing the head, drill and/or carve in the eye holes last, doing this prematurely will limit your freedom of carving. The mouth should be opened up enough to enter with the carving tools. A few big teeth are better than lots of little ones. The tongue is an important detail but hard to get at, what you did at the bandsaw phase is very important here.

The ears can either be built-in or added on separately, depends on the design. When making add-on ears, do them both at once out of the same piece of wood, that way they remain more similar. Cut them apart just before they are finished then drill a hole for their entry into the head (see below).

When carving on the head, work with a center line down its length (as viewed from the top). This will keep you much closer to symmetry, the Dentzelbench vice is very good at these types of operations. Also, use the bandsaw as much as you are comfortable in taking away waste wood. Just be sure that the piece is down on the table when cutting, holding a piece up and then letting the blade slam the work down onto the saw table can be damaging.  Note: I very often leave on square chunks of waste wood at either end of the head, leg, or other part in order to grab it better with either one of my vices.  This makes for very easy carving, then I take that little piece away at the end.

Three layered thick head showing hollow middle, be sure all pieces have similar grain direction.

The easiest way to make a set of ears is to do them together, then cut them apart after they are matching.

The neck, four layers thick, also showing hollow middle.


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