Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Toolbox Tuesday - Froes


To split shingles, laths, staves and clapboards a knife-type wedge called a froe was struck with a short maul known as a froe-club. A froe and a froe-club were used by wedging the froe in the wood, going with the grain, and using the froe-club to strike the froe away from the body, all while twisting the froe to split the wood. A froe could be used for many jobs including splitting wood for kindling, splitting willow logs for gates and hurdles and splitting fresh oak for lathing. A saw was almost never used for cutting with the grain, splitting a length of wood was much easier. Old men who were too feeble to swing an axe could still easily make kindling from logs. A craftsman could split square inch length from a large piece of wood in a fraction of the time that it would take them to saw it.

Come out to the Heritage Farm Show at the Backus-Page House Museum September 13th and 14th to see our antique froes and other farm implements featured on our Toolbox Tuesday blog posts.  

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