I can buy tree stakes, which are 32mm x 32mm x 1.2m quite easily. However on occasion I need something slightly thicker, say 50mm x 50mm or 75mm x 75mm but of equal or shorter length (<1.2m), and sometimes I need those tree stakes, but shorter. Used for various things around my allotment, driven into the ground with a lump hammer.

The thicker timber is always flat ended, and never spiked. The thinner timber once cut produces a flat ended off cut. Is there a way, other than manually planing the timber into a point, to create this spike. I almost want a very large pencil sharpener.

What I know I don't want is the metal spikes that are used for fencing, as these are costly and pointless for my applications. I have tried to saw the end into a spike, but as I am unable to do this evenly around the edge when driven into the ground its never straight. The timber is too thick to whittle.

  • 1
    Which types of woodworking power tools do you possess? Commented May 3, 2018 at 0:27
  • Fortifying for the zombie apocalypse by chance? Commented May 3, 2018 at 10:30
  • @statueuphemism you got through my thinly veiled disguise.
    – DavidT
    Commented May 3, 2018 at 11:19
  • @Harper, power tools is easier to say none. I'd buy the right one though if thats what is suggested.
    – DavidT
    Commented May 3, 2018 at 11:20
  • many tools would do; it's a question of what other uses the tool would have for you, once this is done. Commented May 3, 2018 at 14:15

1 Answer 1


Man using a drawknife on a pole CC BY-SA 3.0 DontWorry

You could probably use any of

  • hand tools
    • hand axe and stump - and practice.
    • hand saw - and more practice, or a custom mitre-box/jig
    • drawknife
    • adze - and lots of practice
    • large chisels and mallet?
  • power tools
    • band saw
    • table saw with mitre-gauge or jig and clamps
    • chop-saw with jig for angle and external support for stake
    • sabre-saw (reciprocating saw)

For a one-off job I would use a hand saw to make four cuts to produce a point. If it came out off-centre I'd true it up with whatever hand tools I have to hand which worked best (maybe even a jack-plane set up for hogging off). Then keep practising.

I know you really are looking for a giant pencil sharpener

See also https://woodworking.stackexchange.com

  • I looked through the stack exchange list twice and didn't see woodworking. Obviously looking without seeing. I think 4 saw cuts is the way forward - I hadn't thought of introducing a mitre-box for accuracy. Thanks.
    – DavidT
    Commented May 3, 2018 at 11:24

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