The Arbortech TURBO Plane is reviewed by Bob Duncan in the Fall 2014 issue of Woodcarving Illustrated Magazine.

Bob says about the TURBO Plane; “When I first tried the TURBO Plane, I set my feet firmly, grabbed the grinder, braced my shoulders and wrists, and applied the tool to the wood. I was pleasantly surprised at how little resistance I felt as wood sliced off the blank. This tool moves wood without causing wrist, arm and shoulder fatigue.”


Read the article HERE.



Woodworking Project: Mustache Clock Using the Arbortech Power Chisel & Mini-TURBO

This nifty woodworking project, the mustache clock, is a great gift idea or a bit of quirky home decor to display on your mantel, bookshelf or counter.

Time required: Approximately 2 hours

Arbortech tools required:

  • Power Chisel
  • Woodcarver’s Starter Kit 5 Chisel Pack
  • Mini-TURBO

Wood used: old stair oak

Our woodworking dealer from Germany created this version of the mustache clock however written in German, we have translated to English in this blog post.

You can build very small or witty gifts with Arbortech tools. Here is the new hipster clock tinker itself. On this page you will find an instruction manual how to use less material and cost a great Mustache (Moustache) can build clock. The material used for the clock an old stair oak was used.



First, a mustache is printed glued to the wood pile and cut with a band saw. Of course you could also form the basis of a Wood Carver Rout, in our case, we have used a band saw.


The Mustache Dial

The mini turbo kit we cut a rectangular hole in the fits the movement. It could use a template, since the recess is not visible later you can mill freehand them too. The front of the clock is also dealt with the mini turbo kit. Only the outer ends are thinner then cut the edges rounded off with the small Schnitzfräser. If the shape of the timber profile of a mustache corresponds to it can be a bit sanded with coarse sandpaper. However, it should not be too smooth grind coarsely ground as it works better him. The Turbo Chisel and a 90 ° chisel from the 5-MultiPart chisel set then some grooves carved into his mustache. To set the clock to color wood stain color mahogany was used. After the stain dry the clock was once again sanded to obtain a Vinitage look.


The Movement

Finally, the movement is mounted. When you buy a clockwork it are the waves for the pointer as long as possible. Most of the dial thickness is specified in movements. The thicker it may remain the easier it is to produce.

Click on the image below to watch the project video (please note: video is in German).


German Video


For the original video of this mustache clock project (and in English), below is Arbortech’s video.


English Version
Different wood species are good for different purposes and uses.


This blog post we will be putting larch wood in the spotlight. This wood is the ideal wood and perfect for exterior work and furniture.


Read on for the rundown on larch wood.
  • In practical medicine the bark of Larch and resin were used for respiratory and kidney ailments as well as in bandages for burns
  • Larch prefers to grow alone in full sunlight
  • It’s habitat is Russian Siberia with plenty of swamps, bogs and moist soil
  • When Larch is properly processed, its inherent beauty becomes more vivid
  • Due to its legendary properties Larch is considered to be one of the best among the wood types. It used to be especially popular in Venice, Italy and other great marinas
  •  Larch wood has become a staple of residential and commercial applications
  • Larch is resistant to extreme climate conditions, repels, insect and fungus attacks, and is not harmed by acids or alkalis. It possesses inherent silica content and natural oils, which eliminate the need of using any preservatives or sealants
  • Larch may be left untreated for years and yet be easily restored to its original golden brown color, although some prefer to add some color to it
  • The beauty and durability of Larch has led to its lasting popularity in the production of outdoor decking and interior decorative trim, as well as all military and commercial European ships until XIXth Century
  • Larch is the ideal wood for decking, for it’s become the standard of excellence. Boat builders have appreciated natural characteristics of Larch for centuries; its unparalleled durability, workability and resistance to all extremes of climate. Larch wood remains unaffected by insects, fungus, acids or alkalis. The natural oils eliminate the need for preservatives and sealants used to prevent wood from cracking. Larch is also appreciated for its golden color, dark markings and straight grain. Although coarse in texture, it is smooth to the touch and virtually has no raised grain. Owners may choose any shade of finishing or leave its natural silver grey color
  •  The City of Venice was constructed on platforms raised above water, and resting on piles made of Siberian Larch. After 1400 years some of the piles were inspected. It turned out that larch piles serving as a base for the underwater part of the city have become so hard that cutting them either with an axe or with a saw is next to impossible
  •  Larch decking requires no further maintenance and has a number of advantages. This product is suitable for residential decks and walkways as well as commercial and public spaces




Source: http://www.maliburemodeling.com


The Light Of My Life

Created by Kristine Inkster, Arbortech Executive Director


Novice woodworker? No 

Description of your wood art?
The base of a lamp for the home.


Where did you get your inspiration for your wood art piece?
The piece of wood. I carved this piece because I was running out of time before the event was to be judged and saw this piece of cypress pine which I thought would make a good lamp base.


What type of wood did you use?
Camphor laurel.


What Arbortech tool/s did you use to create this piece?
  • TURBOPlane
  • 4″ sanders
  • Mini Sander
  • Mini Industrial


What was your process in the creation of this project?
I cut it in half to make two pieces the same size and then drew a rough shape for the neck before cutting each piece with a bandsaw. After deciding which sides I wanted to show as the external edge of the lamp, I then ran a channel for the wiring down the center of each piece using the Arbortech Mini-Grinder with the Industrial Blade attached.


Once I had the channel I could glue both pieces together so  I could start shaping.  I then used the TURBOPlane to take off the edges and give me that nice rounded rectangular shape.


When I was satisfied with the shape I  used the Contour Sander to sand the neck and sides.  I then used oil to finish off as I wanted a matte finish before threading the wiring through and gluing in a small piece of aluminum tubing into the top to make it look a little nicer.  Then I purchased a lamp shade which suited the base and have placed it on the entry hall table.


Where does this piece reside now?
Entry hall table in my house. See picture below of the lamp being displayed at my house. 



Yesterday’s Hero

WINNER 2014 Arbortech woodworking competition


Created by Steve Marsh, Arbortech Financial Controller


Novice woodworker? No 


Description of your wood art?
Scrap wood rescued from a tree which was being cut down. It was left outside to season and rot before being rescued and preserved. Showing contrast between extremes of condition within the torso. 


Where did you get your inspiration for your wood art piece?
The wood before rotting looked like a “complete” male torso. The wood itself was the inspiration.
I salvaged the wood when a neighbour cut down a very large Marri tree, originally the wood had an extra small branch which made it look much more like a male torso than it does now. The “natural” shape was displayed in my outdoor area for many years and provided habitat for many creepy crawlies and bugs. I noticed that the wood had started to rot, and I was keen to not lose the piece altogether. This coincided with me looking for a project to complete for the woodworking competition. Voila!  I decided to try and make a sculpture from the wood. I have many more pieces of wood in my yard from the same tree and hope to be making more items using this wood.


What type of wood did you use?


What Arbortech tool/s did you use to create this piece?


What was your process in the creation of this project?
Firstly I started to remove any rotten wood, this was much more extensive than I had originally thought and ended up with the almost the entire core of the branch being removed, I then decided to finish the job and hollowed it out entirely. I wanted to highlight the affects and patterns in the wood caused by its long term exposure to the elements. Even quite late in the process there small inhabitants were fleeing their homes! and yes I did feel bad!
The process was quite organic and the style of the piece changed quite significantly while working on the wood. I ended up doing far less work on some parts that I had originally intended (mainly the legs) and other parts ended up being worked much more in order to show up the contrasts in the wood. This was a much different process to the other pieces I have made, where I had a very clear idea of what I wanted to achieve before even starting the work.
Once the piece was finished I decided that it should be mounted in such a way as to highlight the contrasts between the various surfaces, so I used a piece of salvaged building timber and iron rod to mount the torso. The process was very rewarding in itself with many creative ups and downs and at one point quite late in the process I was on the verge of starting a new project, but I am glad that I saw it through and am ultimately very happy with the outcome.


How long did it take for you to complete this project?
Overall the project took about 10 hours spread over a couple of weeks. For the sanding I was able to use the new Arbortech Contour Sander which saved me an enormous amount of time, and allowed me to achieve a finish which I would have struggled to achieve otherwise. I did spend significantly longer time during the process thinking about the progress and where to from here.


How did you feel about being the winning piece for this year’s staff woodworking project?
It was great, it was especially rewarding as I had been very unsure about the piece when I was working on it and it was not until close to finishing it that I could see where it was going, even when finished I was a little unsure about it. So receiving the recognition was great, and it is always nice to receive positive feedback from colleagues and friends.


Where does this piece reside now?
The piece takes pride of place in entry hall, and does sometimes double as a hat stand. I have an old house and the hallway is quite dark so I am currently thinking about adding some lighting to the piece. If I do it would be an up light recessed into the stand.


Final comments?
When I attended high school it was compulsory for boys to do woodworking and metal working. I was never good at either and spent my entire year of woodworking trying to make a table (which my mother loved, as only a mother could). Since I have been working with Arbortech I have been inspired to try a different approach to working with wood and this has allowed me to produce a number of pieces which I have given as presents and also have around my house. This has allowed me to explore and develop a creative side which I previously would not have done. Thanks Arbortech!

Wooden Bowl


Created by Boro Trpevski,
Arbortech Production & Quality Control Engineer



Novice woodworker? Yes. This was my first woodcarving piece and I have learned some new skills in woodworking with great help from my colleagues. I enjoyed this project very much. Understanding what I can achieve with the Arbortech tools, I will test my artistic skills with my next woodworking project (next time will be something more complex). 


Description of your wood art?
A bowl in the shape of a heart.


Where did you get your inspiration for your wood art piece?
The shape of the wooden off cut piece. It was natural to follow the shape as is with small modifications. The natural shape of this wood piece and it’s size dictated what I could carve out of it. I wanted to preserve the outer spiky form in particular and the outline of the off cut already had a triangular/heart looking form which I more or less followed and created the heart looking bowl.


What type of wood did you use?


What Arbortech tool/s did you use to create this piece?


What was your process in the creation of this project?

1. I started with the Arbortech Mini Grinder and the Woodcarving Blade only to realize the wood was too hard and it would take too long. I decided to switch to the TURBO Plane for a rough cavity shape on a dipper side of the bowl, then continue with the Mini TURBO to carve the internal shape.


2. Next, I used the Arbortech Mini Grinder and the mini Industrial Blade to make a more pronounced “heart” shape out of the bowl. For sanding, I used the Arbortech Contour Sander with several grits.


3. The last step was waxing and polishing.


How long did it take for you to complete this project?
Approximately 1 hour and a half to complete this project.


Where does this piece reside now?
It is on a dining table in my home, radiating love for all.


Rustic Entertainment Tray


WINNER 2014 Arbortech woodworking competition
Created by Barry Fitzpatrick, Arbortech Production Manager



Novice woodworker? No 


Description of your wood art?
A portable food and drinks tray.


Where did you get your inspiration for your wood art piece?
This was an original piece that is something practical to use to transport wine, glasses and finger foods from one area to another safely and securely. To my knowledge, I have seen nothing else like it.


What type of wood did you use?
Marine plywood and timber dowels.


What Arbortech tool/s did you use to create this piece?


What was your process in the creation of this project?
1. Draw a card template for the top tier.
2. Cut two identical sheets of marine plywood to desired size.
3. Transfer the shape and hole centres through the template onto the top tier.
4. Transfer the hole centres through to the bottom sheet of plywood.
5. Drill the 6 holes for the wine glass stems, and cut the top tier to a shorter length for access for the food items on each end.
6. Bore the pillar holes 50% of the thickness of the plywood sheet using the transferred spotted through hole centres from the template with brace and bit.
7. Cut slots with tenor saw to meet up with the wine stem holes and drill and cut centre wine bottle hole roughly smooth with drill bit and rasp file to round.
8. Cut pillars to selected height and end handles from the same 20mm dia dowel rod.
9. Clamp top and bottom tiers to a flat surface and using Arbortech TURBO Plane, shape and wave bevels around the edges, while clamped shape recesses to join wine glass stem holes along two sides.
10. While clamped using the TURBO Plane, plane the top surfaces of both tiers to achieve the desired pattern to achieve the rustic look and cut top tier end bevelled semi-circles.
11. With an Arbortech 50mm Woodcarver Blade shape the utensil, wine bottle base and tile receptacles to prevent movement of items when put onto the tray.
12. With a Woodcarver, cut a slot along the handles to the thickness of the bottom tier.
13. With the Arbortech Power Chisel, form 6 x round recesses at the holes that will accept the and locate the wine glasses securely
14. With the Arbortech Contour Sander, sand all surfaces starting with 80# and working up to 600# sanding discs for a smooth glass finish.
15. Glue the pillars into position into the 50% blind holes, hold in position with the aid of inserting an empty wine bottle for centring the top tier in line with the bottom.
16. Glue the slotted handles onto the base tier each end.
17. After adhesion complete any further last sanding to perfect, clean off any excess glue.
18. Oil with a rag using olive oil.


How long did it take for you to complete this project?
It is difficult to give an exact time as I did not start and finish at one time. I estimate it took me about 8 hours.


How did you feel about being the winning piece for this year’s staff woodworking project?
I was obviously delighted in winning with the knowledge that people liked my idea and piece enough to vote for it, but I was also surprised as there was a lot of other deserving pieces in this staff competition. 


Where does this piece reside now?
My piece is currently residing in my meals area waiting for the weather to change for some BBQ’s where I intend to put it to some good use.
Since all my family members have seen the tray they all want one! The trouble is I have no time to make them. It has also crossed my mind to set up and make them on a commercial basis. If I make more, it would be with two bottles of wine instead of one to coincide with the number of glasses.



A bit of a flashback to Flint’s earlier work.



Location: Nannup, Western Australia

Inspiration for sculpture:
There are eight Totem Poles in total and each is 7 meters high which was completed in 2008.
The local council purposely cut down the Jarrah trees and Flint was asked to do work his magic on the trees.

Tools Used:



With most of Flint’s work, the process is very similar from one project to another. The amount of work depends on the complexity of the tree and end carving.

  1. Debarking
  2. Chainsaw work – This step took a whole to talk the bulk of the wood out and working out the proportions. The time for this process really depends on what project it is so therefore, timing varies. The main chainsaw work here is to take the main bulk of the timber away.
  3. Proportions – When Flint carves out the proportions he is careful to not add too much definition so he has room to move with proportions if needed. Once he is happy with the proportions he works on the definition and hard cuts. Once it is down to this stage he will then look at the finer details and works from here.


Completion time:

One week for each Totem Pole. Flint did about another dozen Totem Poles and there will be more coming Totem Poles which Flint will be working on for the remainder of 2013.

Sergei’s work of wood chip sculptures continue. If you didn’t see the first blog post of this series, we suggested using left over wood chips and shavings from your use of Arbortech tools to start projects such as these. Not only is this a great way to recycle wood chips but it looks like a good challenge for those looking to make something different. If you are looking to try something like this for the first time we recommend you start small and aim for a rustic appearance. These particularly intricate and extremely precise sculptures take over 6 months to complete, so if you want to simply test the waters remember – start small. Good luck!


We welcome your comments below.

In our previous blog post we featured the Arbortech staff woodworking competition winners.
If you missed our previous blog post on the competition winners you can check it out here.
We had some great submissions from our staff and we’d like to share these projects with you to showcase their fantastic work. Check out the woodworking projects below.


Plywood Cluster Table
 This table will be one of six, creating a cluster table.
Created by: Kevin Inkster (CEO)
Wood used: Plywood Cluster Table

Arbortech tools used:

Kevin at work on his cluster table


Myrtle Turtle 

Created by: Kristine Inkster (Executive Director)

Wood used: Queensland Myrtle wood
Arbortech tools used:

Kristine carving the details on the turtle


Celtic Door
Created by: Matthew Cormack (R&D)

Wood used: Pine wood

Arbortech tools used:














Celtic Door was milled to size and doweled


Perth Skyline
Created by: Nora Redzwan (Sales)

Wood used: Camphor wood

Arbortech tools used:



Representation of Perth Skyline
My Grand Daughter’s Clock
Created by: Peter Tashjian (Production)
A photo calendar with monthly and yearly photos were inserted into round pockets into their appropriate location. A clock was mounted, chiselled letters and the face of Peter’s grand-daughter were inscribed.

Arbortech tools used:














Peter’s clock for his grand-daughter



Created by: Steve Marsh (Finance Dept)

Wood used: Pine wood

Arbortech tools used:



“Stretch” giraffe


The Golden Dragon

Created by: Barry Fitzpatrick (Production)

Wood used: Jarrah

Arbortech tools used:

Using the Power Chisel to carve out the dragon


Stool With Sad Face
Created by: Rocky Xu (R&D)
Wood used: Pine wood

Arbortech tools used:


Carving from the wood using the Mini TURBO


Pagan Cross

Created by: Bill Ginn (Manufacturing Team)
Wood used: Curly Jarrah

Arbortech tools used:



Using the Power Chisel to carve out the cross



Live, Love, Laugh
Created by: Christine Taylor (Secretary)

Wood used: Sheoak

Arbortech tools used:



Christine’s piece and message was inspired by Vicky Galbraith’s attitude to life

Created by: Peter Godden (Arbortech shareholder)Turbo Fossil

This was Peter’s first time using the TURBO Plane and he said that “the TURBO Plane allowed me to express my creative desires in a way that gave me the freedom to explore different techniques, textures and shapes which were previously difficult to achieve. Whilst the convex of this piece invokes the observer to experience texture, shadow, form in contrast, the concave face offers the subtle qualities of colour and grain patterns. So it is with this sculpture I have looked at opposing surfaces, allowing a deeper appreciation of my creative process, the wonders of natural wood and the great tools to carve it with.

Wood used: Sheoak

Arbortech tools used:



Peter’s first experience using the TURBO Plane and he loved it
REMINDER: We hope you have enjoyed viewing our staff competition woodworking projects and stirred some inspiration in you to use Arbortech tools to create some amazing woodworking projects and sculptures.
What are your thoughts on our staff’s woodworking projects? We’d love to hear from you! Please leave your comments below in the comments section.


The public Woodworking Competition has been extended and closes on Monday 22nd July 2013 by 4.00pm WST.
We are still accepting entries so please send through your entries by clicking here.
Enter your woodworking project today for a chance to win a fantastic Arbortech tools pack up to the value of $1,000 AUD!
For all competition details and entry forms please click here.
Best of luck!!