How to hollow out a log? If this is what you are thinking, you are in the right place. Well, hollowing out a log is not that big a deal if you know the right way to do so. But, if you don’t know the right technique, it could be difficult for you to do so.
You might want to hollow a log to use it as a planter or just to increase the storage space. But, no matter what the reason be, it is a simple trick that a lot of people get confused in. There are different tools that you can use to cut out the part that you want. Some of the most common tools that you can use are chisel, woodworking mallet, and woodworking router. When it comes to the speed of doing the job, woodworking routers work really fast but the problem with them is the initial cost. However, if you don’t want to invest much money in it, you can still try some other methods.
In this article, we will discuss the easiest methods of hollowing a wooden log. So, if you are confused about how to hollow out a log, you can use these methods to do so. Starting from the method to the tools that you require, we will discuss everything in detail. So, stay tuned and let’s see which method suits you the most.
How to hollow out a log?
Using a Chisel
Using a chisel to hollow a wooden log is one of the most common and the simplest ways that people use. Since it doesn’t require any significant investment, people prefer using this method. Also, it is a pretty simple method and doesn’t have any complex steps in the procedure. But, it will require time and human effort to do so. However, if you know the right technique and steps, you will be able to do it in less time. So, let’s have a look at the procedure of how to hollow out a log using a chisel.
1. Sharpen the Chisel
The first thing that you will need to do in this method is to sharpen the chisel. The tools that we keep at home need sharpening from time to time because when we use them, the edges of them get affected. But, the best thing is that we can get them back in shape by sharpening them. However, if you don’t need a precise finish while hollowing the log, there is no need to sharpen the chisel as you can do the job roughly. But, if you need a perfect finish, you will need to sharpen the chisel to make sure that you do everything precisely. So, while you are sharpening the chisel, you will need to follow these steps.
- Take a sharpening stone and drag the end of the chisel back and forth on it.
- Now, take the angled side of the chisel and drag it back and forth.
- Reverse the side of the chisel and do the same.
You are done sharpening the chisel and it is ready to be used. Now, let’s see how to hollow out a log using a chisel.
2. Keep one end of the log fixed
Keeping one end of the log fixed to support is very important because when you apply pressure on the log, it will get pushed back if it’s free to move. If the wooden log is not that thick, you can use a clamp to secure one end of it. However, if the log is too big for a clamp, you can simply keep it standing on the ground and start your work from the upper side.
3. Mark the outline
This is an important step while you are trying to cut a hollow in a wooden log. You will need to make an outline of the part that you want to be cut out. This is important because if you don’t do so, you won’t be able to give it a circular finish. To mark the outline, you can make use of a tape or even a pencil for that matter. You can also put a few dots for your reference while hollowing. Let’s cut the chase and get to the final step to see how to hollow out a log.
4. Position the chisel of the log and beat it with a hammer
Once you have fixed one end of the log, you are ready to go. Now, keep the angled end of the chisel on the upper end of the wooden log and start beating it with a hammer. You should note that while holding the chisel, keeping the angle steep will help you cut deeper into the wood. This also means that you can control the impact by changing the angle of holding the chisel. But, keeping the angle of the chisel lower will help you have better control. Even if you cut a little less at a time, you will be able to do it precisely.
Keep doing it until you make a hollow space into the log as deep as you need. If the log is too long, you can switch ends after you reach the middle. You can also cut the log into two halves and then hollow them separately using this method. Once you do it, you can glue them together. This is how to hollow out a log using a chisel. However, your job doesn’t end here. You will also need to remove the chunks of wood to give it a finishing touch.
- A pencil or tape
- Safety glasses
- Sharpening stone
So, if you were wondering about how to hollow out a log, this is the simplest and most cost-effective method of doing so. You can also use a circular saw in this method once you dig deep enough with a chisel. But, this is not the only efficient method of hollowing out a wooden log. You can also use some other methods. Let’s have a look at another one.
Using a Drill
Another method of hollowing out a log is by using a drill. If you are thinking about how to hollow out a log using this method, it is pretty easy and you will end up saving a lot of time. The things that you used in the first method will also come into play in this method at some point if you need to completely hollow the log or to hollow out a larger part of it. So, let’s see how to hollow out a log using a drill.
1. Mark the outline
Just like the previous method, you will also need to mark the outlines in this method. Since you are using a drill this time, you will be able to give it a much better finish. So, it is better to mark an outline to make things more precise. You can make use of a pencil to draw some marks or you can even use a tape to make fix the target points. Once you do so, you are ready to drill in.
2. Choose the bit
Now that you have the guided areas where you need to drill, you would need to choose the right bit to do the job. This depends totally on the width of the hole that you need. If you need a wider hole, you should go with the biggest one that you have. But, if you need a smaller hole, you should go for a smaller bit. Since there is a wide range of bits when it comes to the size, you will get several options to choose from.
But, before using the bit that you have chosen to do the job, you should use a small bit to make a few guide holes on the outline that you have made. This will make a way for you to drill through more easily because the outer surface of the wood is harder and it will be better if you start with a less wide bit. Once you have made some guide holes, you can use the chosen bit to do the rest of the job.
3. Decide the width of the hollow
How to hollow out a log is no longer a problem, but knowing the depth of the hollow is the question. Once you have decided on the depth that you want to hollow out, you would need to drill holes accordingly. To make it precise and keep the depth of all the holes equal, you can tape the bit and drill till that point while covering each hole. This will help you keep the depth of the holes equal.
Now that you have drilled holes in the log, you can simply use a chisel and do the same steps as you did in the first method. But, the only difference will be that it is going to be much easier for you this time. You will require to put in less effort. Also, it will save you a lot of time. So, this is how to hollow out a log using a drill.
This method is much simpler and the only extra thing that you will require here is a drill and different bits. But, you should be aware that while drilling, you should wear safety glasses to make sure nothing gets into your eyes. You should also wear a mask if you have breathing problems as dust could enter your lungs. Now let’s see the final method of how to hollow out a log in our list.
Using a Plunge Router
This is a method in which you will require minimal human effort. But, we have kept it for the last because you will need a plunge router to do the job and if you don’t have it, you won’t be able to use this method. However, if you do have a plunge router, you can use this method. So, let’s see how to hollow out a log using a plunge router.
Just like the above two mentioned methods, you will need to mark the outline for the area that you want to be hollowed out. Once done, choose the bit that you want to use. Also, decide the depth of the hollow. Once you do all these steps, you are ready to hollow it out. You will need to lower the bit into the wooden log by using the handle. When it reaches the maximum depth, reverse the process and take the bit out. Now, do the same at all the market points. How to hollow out a log is our concern here and we are not done yet. When you are done making the required holes, you can use a chisel to remove the chunks. Your job will be done and this is how to hollow out a log using a plunge router.
Well, these are the most common and the easiest ways to hollow out a wooden log. You can try out these methods according to your convenience. Along with this one, all of the above-mentioned methods of how to hollow out a log are worth trying. But, you should be careful while trying to hollow a wooden log.
These methods of how to hollow out a log are easy to perform; however, you will need to be careful while trying them at home. Also, if you are doing it for the first time, you should know what you are doing and stay careful. Always have a medical kit by your side that you can use if in case you get injured. Moreover, make sure that you are wearing safety gear like glasses, a mask (optional), and gloves.
Well, you might have found the answer to how to hollow out a log. We have shared some methods that you can try at home to hollow out a wooden log or a piece of wood. You can use the method that looks the easiest to you. But, do it with attention and stay safe while using tools.