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What is a marking knife?

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Marking knives, woodwork, layout, tools, carpentry, DIYer, joints, scribe, mark, wonkee donkee. Marking knives are part of the group known as marking tools, which belong to a larger group called woodworking tools.
Marking knives, woodwork, layout, tools, carpentry, DIYer, joints, scribe, mark, wonkee donkee. Marking knives are used to score guidelines prior to cutting wood. These guidelines can be straight lines or dimples for drills or other tools to follow.
Marking knives, woodwork, layout, tools, carpentry, DIYer, joints, scribe, mark, wonkee donkee. Marking knives are sometimes known as striking knives, simply because they strike (scribe) a guide along a straight edge to mark where to make a chisel or saw cut.
Marking knives, woodwork, layout, tools, carpentry, DIYer, joints, scribe, mark, wonkee donkee. Marking knives are designed to be used across the grain of the wood. They can be used along the grain, but this can be difficult because the tip of the blade often follows the grain, producing an inaccurate guideline. Wood grain is the direction, texture and pattern of the fibres that make up a piece of wood.
Marking knives, woodwork, layout, tools, carpentry, DIYer, joints, scribe, mark, wonkee donkee. There are two types of marking knife, double-bevel and single-bevel.
Marking knives, woodwork, layout, tools, carpentry, DIYer, joints, scribe, mark, wonkee donkee. The double-bevel marking knives are also known as spear-shaped marking knives because of the blade’s resemblance to a spear head.
Marking knives, woodwork, layout, tools, carpentry, DIYer, joints, scribe, mark, wonkee donkee. Double-bevel marking knives are more versatile than single-bevel ones. The double-bevel blade allows you to mark with your right or left hand and is able to cut in any direction.
Marking knives, woodwork, layout, tools, carpentry, DIYer, joints, scribe, mark, wonkee donkee. Single-bevel marking knives are available separately with left- and right-sided bevels. The position of the bevel will determine the direction in which the knife can be pulled.

This is because the bevel side always has to face away from the guide you are running the blade against, making sure there is no gap between the back of the blade and the guide.

A double-bevel marking knife can scribe in any direction because it has both a right-hand and a left-hand bevel.

Marking knives, woodwork, layout, tools, carpentry, DIYer, joints, scribe, mark, wonkee donkee. Marking knives are suitable for professionals and DIYers who want to scribe precise guidelines.