It is always a nice idea to introduce whittling as a hobby to your children at an early age. Children are said to be able to learn and adapt to their surroundings faster than adults. This makes it very easy to start them off woodworking and whittling in general. If your kids are interested in taking whittling as one of their hobbies, then you need a knife that is suitable for their experience. We made that easy for you by compiling the list of the top 3 whittling knives for kids.
What Makes a Whittling Knife Great for Kids? (Buyer’s Guide)
When it comes to children their safety should be the first and foremost concern. In fact, in woodworking, the first and foremost tip is to always look after safety when handling sharp objects. The second thing that should be of concern when buying a whittling knife for kids is comfort. Ergonomics is an important factor as it will encourage kids to practice for longer periods of time without being uncomfortable.
When whittling we are sure you will buy your kids a leather thumb guard. Other than that there are other important features in a knife that will contribute to its overall safety.
A knife with the least amount of sharp points and edges is a great choice for kids. Though at times it does dull the sense of danger in children, at a young age, and for a first whittling knife, they don’t need to feel the fear. They need to be able to enjoy it, so having the least amount of sharp edges feels like a good safety option.
Another one is storage, as the risk of injury is at its highest when a knife is not in use. So being able to safely store it away is very important in this aspect. Having a sheath that will keep the sharp edge of the knife tucked away is a great feature to have in whittling knives. If the knife folds, then that is even better since the blade safely tucks away into itself.
If you want kids to do something for a long period of time, you need to make it comfortable for them. Something that is uncomfortable and painful, no matter how interesting the children find it, they will try to avoid it after a while. So having a comfortable handle to your whittling knife and a comfortable spine to which they can hold on while whittling is really important.
Handle shape and design are something you should consider when buying a whittling knife for children. Think of smaller hands and try to measure the knife’s comfort from that perspective.
There are knives specifically designed for children’s use that have smaller handles that are comfortable for their hands. Buying such a knife that will give them a relaxing and comfortable positioning for their small and sensitive hands.
Top 3 Whittling Knives for Kids Reviewed
My First Opinel No.7 is a knife that has no pointed edges whatsoever making it super safe for children. In fact, it is named my first because of the fact that the brand is encouraging it to be the first knife for kids. This particular box set comes with a sheath that can be used to safely store away your knife. However, even if you buy the knife alone, you can safely store it away as it folds into itself.
Even though it folds into itself, it is best if you do that for the kids instead of letting them do it. The knife locks into place so it does not fold without removing the locking ring. Not to mention when you unlock and fold it, it does not have a spring mechanism that snaps shut the knife. All of these features focus explicitly on children’s safety.
The rounded handle makes it very comfortable to hold with subtle grooves that help children with gripping it. Overall this can be the best whittling knife for kids but it is not limited to whittling. It can be used for a multitude of tasks, which is great as you can introduce children at a young age to them without any fear or danger. Overall a great knife, though it isn’t as heavy-duty as we would like it to be, your kids won’t be doing big tasks when they are beginning anyways.
Keeping up with the theme of safety and comfort, the Mora Rookie Children’s Whittling Knife brings both to the table. One of the main features of this tool is the rounded edge blade. The blade is rounded off at the tip and is similar to that of the Opinel No. 7 but Mora Rookie Children’s Whittling Knife does not stop there. It also comes with a hilt guard to avoid slippage when whittling.
This hilt guard protects the hands from slipping onto the blade itself which might cause injury to the children. One more safety feature that is very preferable when it comes to whittling knives for kids is a sheath. Although the sheath is not as great as we would want it to be, since it wears down pretty fast, it is still a good addition to have. Besides you can make your own sheath using the dimensions of the included one if it does wear off.
Lastly, the handle grip is round and comfortable, making it plenty ergonomic. With the hilt guard slipping is not a fear that one will have when giving this whittling knife to their children so a rounded handle just adds to their comfort. It is not expensive so price is not an issue as well even though the knife comes packed with features.
While not the most safety-featured packed knife on our list, it is certainly packed with different blades for advanced wood carving. The Old Timer 24OT is the knife that you get your kids once they have the basics of whittling down. It comes with 6 tools that fold into the body, which can help children learn about the advanced techniques used when whittling and carving wood.
A textured grip allows you to hold the knife much better without the fear of slippage. The additional blades are a great inclusion if you want to introduce your kids to bushcraft along with basic wood whittling. The folding mechanism allows the kids to safely store the knife without any risk of damage.
With notches for nail pull in the blades, it is easy to pull the knives out, and a thick spine gives you the option to push the blade back into the body once you are done using it. Overall a great bushcraft knife and whittling knife to have for kids and adults alike.
Safety Tips to Ensure for Whittling for Kids
- Always supervise kids when they are whittling: this should be the first safety tip that you should abide by as nothing is more important than the safety of the kids. Adult supervision is important all the time when kids are handling sharp objects. This will avoid any accidents and if the kids are doing something wrong you can stop them before any injuries occur.
- Invest in thumb guards: invest in a tight and durable leather thumb guard for children that they can wear while whittling. This will protect their thumbs from the blade’s edge while ensuring that the kids can learn to their utmost best without the concern of safety scaring them from bringing out their potential.
- Make sure the blades are sharp enough: though it might sound weird that the blades of the whittling knives for kids should be sharp, a sharper blade will ensure that your kids don’t struggle while whittling. If there is a struggle when using the knife, there are more chances of accidents as a dull blade lacks control.
- Safety gear: make your children wear goggles when they are whittling as you don’t want any shavings or splinters to fly into their sensitive areas, specifically the eyes. The eyes are very sensitive and susceptible to any such wooden splinters or shavings which can cause not only discomfort but also injury.
FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)
Can you buy your kids whittling knives that don’t have a sheath?
It is not a problem to buy your kids a whittling knife without a sheath, but you will have to be extra careful when you have to store it away to avoid any accidents. Alternatively, you can make your own sheath for the knife if you have any skills with leatherworking.
Should you avoid rounded handles when you buy whittling knives for children?
Round handles are more comfortable when holding knives for whittling. A round handle lacks grip, but you can always do some personalised work on the grip, i.e. put texture marks that will ensure the knife does not slip from the hand.
Should your kid’s whittling knife be sharp?
A dull knife is more dangerous than a sharp one, this is true for both when you buy a whittling knife for kids or for adults. A sharp knife gives you more control over your actions while a dull knife will make you struggle which often causes accidents.
It is a great idea to start your kids young and introduce such hobbies which will set a foundation for their future. While most parents try to prevent their children from such activities, it is important to give them a skill set that will not only be beneficial for their future but also for their mental health. All of the options in our top 3 whittling knives for children are great introductory blades. Whittling is great as it allows the kids to use their creativity and put it to work and not to mention it is a great skill for survival as well which can help the kids in case they ever need it.