Best Wood Burning Kit

Best Wood Burning Kit – Finding the Best Pyrography Kit for Beginners

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There are hundreds of different art mediums out there, each with its own subcategories and disciplines which form part of the greater whole. Crafting in particular has a wide variety of art forms that initially were simply hobbies, but as technology evolved, tools and supplies not only became more readily available but more affordable too. This allowed certain crafts to evolve through the means of innovative minds and experimentation. One art form that has come a really long way is wood burning, an art form that is better known as pyrography in some circles. What exactly is pyrography? Let’s have a look at what this art form is, how it got started, and how tools and applications linked to this art form have developed over time.

 

 

What Is Pyrography and Wood Burning?

Chronologically, wood burning is an art form that came first, and if you think wood-burning involves throwing some wood on a fire, we agree that the name isn’t exactly descriptive. It is pretty accurate though, wood burning is essentially the art of burning or engraving forms, letters, or phrases into a wooden surface by means of a heated object by means of a poker or pin.

While historians have done their best to trace back the exact origins of wood-burning as a practice, it’s proven to be nearly impossible. People as far back as the stone age have been using heated objects to burn forms into the wood, and this hasn’t been localized to a certain area either. Tribes and civilizations all over the world in places like Africa, Central America, China, and Europe have been documented practicing this art form to preserve their history and even culture.

Wood Burner Tool

Back in the day, wood-burning was seen more as a cultural pass time or hobby than a legitimate art form. Artists would heat up their pokers in coal ovens or over open flames before scorching beautiful caricatures into their wooden workpieces. When electricity became readily available and the art form transcended even more cultural and geographical barriers, wood-burning became mass-produced and sold all over the world as an easy and affordable means of home decoration.

Pyrography on the other hand can be characterized as a broader application of the wood-burning art form. Essentially, it is the practice of wood-burning but on any material that you choose, this includes wood, plastic, metal, slate, leather, and even synthetic materials. Pyrography has become extremely popular, and there are loads of extremely talented artists out there who have created legendary art pieces using this medium. When described like this you might think of pyrography as an art form that is simply one step removed from wood craving, but in reality, it’s far different. You can use color pencils, paints, and even chemicals to change the overall tone and color of your wooden workpiece.

Modern pyrography kits come with amazing additions like multiple wood-burning tips, stencils, and graphite paper so you’re able to make your own custom designs with little to no effort.

 

 

How Does a Wood Burning Kit Work?

If you’re interested in wood-burning or pyrography, it’s important that you have the right tools for the job. While you could go around and get everything you need individually, this could result in you having tools of varying quality and those that might be incompatible with one another. This being said, it’s best for beginners especially to get their hands on a wood-burning kit.

What is a wood-burning kit you ask? Well, wood-burning kits can be characterized as a tool bag for beginners to get started in the art of wood-burning or pyrography. They include everything you’ll need to get started, including wood-burning types, a pyrography pen, some graphite paper, stencils, a holder for your pen, chisels, color pencils, and if you’re really lucky you might even get some wood you can use to get started!

Wood Burning Kit

Why should you get a good wood-burning kit? There are hundreds if not thousands of companies out there who would scream from the rooftops that they have the best wood-burning kit on the market to offer you. In reality, there are very few companies out there that make good wood-burning kits, and a compromise in the quality of tooling or the variety of tools made available to you could affect the overall quality of your artwork.

If a brand claims to have what they believe to be the best wood burning kit out there, they should include a pyrography pen with high tensile wood burner tips to ensure that they don’t break or crack under constant exposure to high temperatures. Besides a good pyrography pen, a good wood-burning kit (for beginners in particular) should include a variety of high-quality stencils and graphite paper to ensure that your designs are transferred onto your workpiece as clearly as possible.

Finally, a wood-burning kit for beginners should always include spare pieces of wood for you to practice on, this ensures that you get a good feel for your wood burner tool, while simultaneously getting a feel for the type of wood you’re using.

A good wood-burning kit for beginners will often also include decorative elements like pencils and paint to develop the skill of coating and drawing on exposed wood. Besides the wood burner tool and decorative supplies, you should never overlook safety when working with any tool capable of generating heat. This is why a good pyrography kit will include (besides good quality wood burner tips) a set of gloves and a stand for your wood burner pen to safely rest on if you’re taking a break. This being said, not every pyrography kit will include all of these tools, and quality can vary considerably depending on the price and brand you choose to go with.

Now that you know what to look for in a good wood-burning kit and why these characteristics are important, we’ve laid out a shortlist of characteristics we think you should keep an eye out for when shopping for one. Although, we do understand that even the best wood-burning tool kit might not have what you’re looking for, consider this to be more of a guideline than a rule book.

  • High tensile wood burning tips
  • Gloves and heat shielding on the wood burner pen
  • Easy to use wood burner pen

Wood Burning Kit for Beginners

  • Some spare wood for you to practice with
  • Decorative supplies
  • Adjustable heat settings
  • A stand for your wood burner pen

 

 

Are There Different Types of Wood Burning Kits?

While it’s good to know what a good wood burner kit looks like, not all wood-burning kits are suitable for you depending on your skill level. Manufacturers realize this and have created wood-burning kits for everyone depending on their ability. Typically, there are three types of wood-burning kits, one for kids, ordinary ones, and ones for those with an advanced skill level, or professionals if you prefer. Here are a few things you can expect from each of these types of wood-burning kits respectively.

Wood Burner Pen

 

Kids’ Wood Burning/Pyrography Kits

Like most products aimed towards kids, these wood-burning kits often put an emphasis on safety. After all, we don’t want any kids burning their precious little fingers in the pursuit of having some creative fun. Besides loads of heat shielding, there are loads of instructional materials included in these kits, which usually details how to use the wood burner tool, what not to use it on, how to prepare your wood for the etching process, how to transfer your designs onto the wooden surface, and even how to use your stencils effectively.

These might also include additional information on things to make from the wood provided, like little installation art pieces, tables, or simply stands for your workpiece.

While these workpieces are useful for all manner of beginner pyrographers, it might be a bit frustrating for older crafters to use some of the smaller instruments. Plus considering that the learning curve might not be as steep as it would for kids, things might get boring pretty quickly. They are great kits though and are the perfect jumping-off point for kids who are interested in pyrography.

 

Intermediary Wood Burning/Pyrography Kits

You could think of these as beginner wood-burning kits for adults. They are some of the most widely sold and are an easy access point for people with crafting experience that want to cut their teeth in the wood-burning discipline. These kits are best characterized by offering loads of variety to the user, with loads of stencils and wood-burning tips for you to choose from. The overall purpose of these wood-burning kits is to introduce you to the art of wood-burning and allow you to develop your technique by utilizing different designs and shapes on your workpiece.

Pyrography Kit

The pyrography pens included in them could or could not have variable heat settings depending on the manufacturer and the price range of the kit, but the pens themselves are usually decent to work with. While these kits do allow you to create your own designs, they lean more toward you perfecting the designs they have provided, using woods that are easy to work with (but kits that include materials usually cost a bit more). These kits are also focused on the user’s experience to try and sell you on the craft, which means their pens are usually ergonomically friendly and require little to no maintenance.

 

Professional Wood Burning/Pyrography Kits

While there are loads of wood-burning kits out there, these are typically the crème of the crop. They usually don’t have as much variety as some of the ones we mentioned previously, focussing less on stencils and instructional materials. Typically, they focus more on the quality of wood-burning tips, the overall feel of the pyrography pen, and the degree to which the heat can be adjusted. While pens for beginners typically heat up slowly, these heat up to operating temperature in just a few seconds and have fewer safety precautions than ones aimed at kids and beginner adults.

These kits also contain less decorative elements too, which means they’re usually sold without things like coloring pencils, paints, and/or stickers.

While a beginner could start out with one of these kits, in theory, they would not have the same experience that they would while using a starter kit. Remember, these kits don’t want to sell you on the idea of wood burning as a craft, which means they won’t have any designs or instructions you could use to develop your skills. This can be disheartening for many beginners, not to mention overkill considering the grade of materials and professional tips usually sold with these wood burning kits.

 

 

What Is the Best Wood Burning Kit Out There?

Now that you know what to look out for in a good wood-burning kit, let’s have a look at some products out there that seem to fit the bill. Remember that not all wood-burning kits are created equal, and shopping around could save you a lot of your time and well-earned money in the future, so without further ado here are our top three picks for the best wood burning kits on the market.

Pyrography Pen

 

Best Overall: IVSUN Wood Burning Kit

There are thousands of wood-burning kits on the market, but it can be hard to find one that has the right balance of performance and value for money. Thankfully, the IVSUN team has found just the right balance between these characteristics and has created a kit that is both ideal for kids and novice wood-burning crafters.

IVSUN offers what is arguably the best wood-burning tool kit out there. This wood-burning kit has a lot of things that one would need to get started straight out of the gate when it comes to wood burning art. This includes a wood-burning tool, wood-burning tips, embossing tools, stencils, wood materials, coloring pencils, a desoldering pump, and a number of other decorating tools that are perfect for perfecting your wood-burning skills.

IVSUN Wood Burning kit
  • The pen temperature can be adjusted from 428 to 788 Fahrenheit
  • Comes with all of the necessary wood-burning tools in a single box
  • Includes multiple interchangeable tips and accessories
View on Amazon

This kit really does bridge the gap between a professional kit and one for beginners, offering a wood-burning tool that has an adjustable heat setting and is ready for use in just 15 seconds after being plugged in. This is great for all of those time-sensitive projects, or if you have multiple workpieces that you’re working on. Besides the pyrography pen, there are loads of other neat things that come with this woodworking kit.

Other neat things that are included in the kit are craft paper, hot stamping tips, letters and number molds, tweezers, a full carry bag, a set of ropes, carbon paper, coloring pencils, wood pieces, welding trowels, and even a pencil sharpener! They really have thought of everything a beginner or professional crafter would need to get started. While we wouldn’t particularly recommend this wood-burning kit for kids, teenagers, or adults that are looking to get started in the wood-burning craft world this is the ideal kit, leaving absolutely nothing to want as even the wood is included with this product.

PROS
  • Versatile
  • Easy to use
  • Includes wood
  • Pen heats up in 15 seconds
  • Heat is adjustable
  • Comes with a carry case
  • Decoration tools included
CONS
  • Not suitable for kids
  • Does not include safety gloves
  • Instructions may be difficult to follow
  • Wood pieces included are small

 

Best Performance: TRUART Stage 1 Wood and Leather Pyrography Pen

While there are loads of woodworking kits that you can buy both in-store and online that offer the best value for money, you might find that you’re looking for quality rather than getting the most bang for your buck. If that is the case, we think that the stage one wood and leather burning kit from the TruArt kit might be just what you’re looking for. The TruArt team seems to understand what more experienced crafters are looking for in a professional pyrography kit.

What do professionals look for in a good woodworking kit? Well, unlike most kits on the market that come equipped to teach you the fundamentals of the art of wood-burning through the use of countless stencils and molds, the stage 1 kit from the TruArt team is designed to give you optimum control and comfort when burning into your workpiece. It does so perfectly with its tailored ergonomic design and fast heating pyrography pen.

You’ll find that most pyrography pens aimed at selling to the largest customer base often use the cheapest materials to save cost, in the interest of simply introducing the most people to the craft rather than satisfying the needs of professionals. While this might make the most money, using materials like brass in wood-burning tips means that they bend and break after a certain amount of use.

TRUART Stage 1 Wood and Leather Pyrography Pen
  • The superior-quality pen features a stainless steel barrel
  • The lightweight pen is easy to handle for precise results
  • Comes with 21 interchangeable tips for versatility
View on Amazon

The TruArt team has avoided this entirely by using a material that doesn’t become more and more malleable as it is heated up and cooled down with each use. Not only does this increase the longevity of your wood-burning tips and brands, but it ensures that they remain as sharp as possible within their lifetime. In fact, they’ll replace any broken tips you have completely free of charge if there are any breaks due to defects.

It’s not just the tip that’s gotten first-class treatment with this pyrography kit. The pen itself seems to be built for optimum proficiency and durability when compared to others in its price range. How so? Well, the internal barrel is made of stainless steel and is lined with rubber to inhibit damage from abrasion and impact. Furthermore, the pen has been designed to be as light as possible to ensure maximum precision when interacting with your workpiece, and also reduces fatigue over time.

If you still aren’t convinced that this is one of the best performance-oriented wood-burning kits on the market, it comes with 21 unique wood-burning tips for all manner of engraving, etching, dotting, and branding applications. This can all be a bit much to process, so the TruArt team has included an illustrated user manual detailing the best way to go about installing and removing the tips and operating the pen for the most longevity and the best results.

PROS
  • Easy to use
  • Tips are highly durable
  • Broken tips are replaced free of charge
  • Heats up quickly
  • The pen is impact and abrasion resistant
  • The pen is lightweight to ensure accuracy and reduce fatigue
  • 25 tips included with purchase
  • Can be used on wood and leather
  • Reputable brand
CONS
  • Not as versatile as other products
  • Expensive
  • Warranty is voided if the voltage exceeding the recommended amount is inserted
  • Not ideal for beginners
  • Limited stencils included with purchase

 

Best Value: UMITIVE Wood Burning Kit

Sometimes you just need something to get the job done, not something that does it particularly well or is even capable of surviving the task at hand. For most artists, some things are inherently disposable due to the manner in which they will be used, but not everything has to be a “one and done” deal. A good example of this is how an affordable pyrography kit doesn’t have to be of poor quality.

The team over at Umitive understands this and has put together an affordable pyrography kit that not only gets the job done but offers incredible value for money. Besides the many added extras this set has to offer, this kit has quite a good pyrography pen for its price range, which features adjustable heat settings which is just perfect for working on both wood and leather workpieces.

While the build quality does seem economical, the internals of the pen feature a ceramic coating for dissipating heat in the most efficient way possible. This is great, as the pen is also fast heating, reaching operating temperatures in just under 15 seconds for all of those time-sensitive projects. Its silicone cover also makes it comfortable to hold, so etching large workpieces won’t cause your hands to cramp up.

UMITIVE Wood Burning Kit
  • Designed to be suitable for both wood and leather surfaces
  • Comes with a ceramic core and a heat-resistant sheath
  • Includes all the necessary wood-burning tools in a carry bag
View on Amazon

This design is simple yet effective, but it’s not just the pen that makes this pyrography kit one of the best in its price range. You get quite a bit of bang for your buck, including 33 different tips (they are brass, though) two alpha-numeric stencils, a metal holder for your pyrography pen, and a portable carry case for all of you crafters on the move. It’s also pretty versatile, being graded for use on crafting paper, wood, fabric, leather, and even cards!

This is all well and good, but we wouldn’t recommend getting this kit for kids. Why? Well, brass wood burning tips tend to get soft really quickly if they’re used often, and while more experienced crafters will recognize that they cannot apply too much pressure when using this unit, kids likely won’t have the foresight.

Knowing this, it’s still a great first woodworking kit for those looking to get their feet wet in pyrography but who don’t have quite as much money to spend, or simply don’t need all the bells and whistles that come with other kits. As we mentioned previously, if you’re looking for something that gets the job done and gets it done well, this is the wood-burning kit for you.

PROS
  • Easy to use
  • Durable pen
  • Versatile tips
  • Affordable
  • 32 pieces included with purchase
  • Heats up quickly
  • Ceramic core heat protection
CONS
  • Not a very high-quality design
  • Tips bend easily under high heat
  • Not suitable for kids
  • No wood material included with purchase
  • Only two stencils were included with the purchase

 

 

What to Look Out for When Practicing Pyrography

While getting started in pyrography is relatively easy, there are a few tips and tricks you should keep in mind when you start crafting for the first time. There are some mistakes that are easy for a beginner to make, and even more factors are often overlooked. Here are a few things you can look out for when starting pyrography for the first time.

Wood Burner Tips

 

Choose Your Wood Wisely

While this might seem weird considering that most woods burn pretty easily when they have been exposed to concentrated heat or an exposed flame, some woods burn a lot easier than others. Do your best to familiarize yourself with wood types that are best suited for pyrography and stock up on them for future workpieces, or simply just to practice on. If you’re wondering which of them are the easiest to work with, they’re generally softer wood types. What are these wood types? Well, you could use maple, poplar, beech, or jelutong for the best results.

These woods have some of the softest heartwood and sapwood of all wood species, due to the spacing in the grain, which is what makes them perfect for pyrography.

 

Prepare Your Wood Well

As with any woodworking craft, the key to getting the most out of your material is to prepare it as best you can. When it comes to preparing wood for pyrography the trick is to sand your workpiece as smoothly as you possibly can. This requires using medium-grit sandpaper and then progressively using finer grits as you move along.

Preparations for Wood Burning Kit

Why is this important when wood-burning you ask? Well, it’s important for two reasons, number one being that smoother surfaces make it easier for you to transfer your design onto your workpiece, and the second is because it allows your wood-burning tips to penetrate and/or slice through the board with greater ease.

 

Perfect Your Technique

No matter how confident you are, wood can be a tricky medium to work with and the chances are that you will mess up some aspect of your design your first time around. This is completely normal, and most small mistakes can be corrected pretty easily with some sanding paper. To avoid mistakes, ensure that you practice on some scrap wood pieces before executing your design in your actual workpiece. You should also do your best to follow the natural grain of the wood. Why? One of the most fundamental rules in pyrography is to let the pen do the work and not to apply pressure. Working against the wood creates resistance, in which case your natural response will be to apply pressure to counteract the resistance.

This can ruin the consistency and overall aesthetic impact of your design.

 

Always Take Your Time

This is more of a blanket statement when it comes to pyrography and woodworking in general. Whether you find yourself outlining your workpiece or in the final stages of shading your design, it’s important not to get frustrated with the process. Take regular breaks and ensure that you remember to breathe when you’re digging into your board, this ensures that your hands are steady and minimizes the probability of an error occurring.

Best Pyrography Pen

It’s also important to be patient with yourself. The learning curve when working with materials like wood can be a steep one as it doesn’t respond the same way the paper or canvas usually would. Try starting off with small, simple designs so you develop an understanding of how the wood reacts to different angles of approach, temperatures, tips, pressures, and techniques.

 

Now that you know what wood burning is, what the difference between pyrography and wood burning is, what a wood-burning kit is, the different types of wood-burning kits that are available, and what a good wood burning kit looks like, it’s time for you to get out there and out your newfound skills to the test. Remember to always be patient, choose the right wood type, and choose the appropriate wood burning kit for your skill level.

 

 

Frequently Asked Questions

 

Is Pyrography the Same as Wood Burning?

While they might seem the same on the surface, there is a distinction between wood-burning and pyrography. While pyrography refers to the act of using heat to engrave, emboss, or brand any surface using a hot poker, wood-burning refers to using this technique on wood specifically.

 

Is It Hard to Learn Pyrography?

Although the concept of wood-burning and/or pyrography can seem a bit overwhelming, it is actually pretty straightforward. The primary challenge with pyrography is developing your skills over time, as the learning curve is different for everyone.

 

Is Pyrography Bad for Your Lungs?

While there are potential risks involved with practicing pyrography, they aren’t any different compared to common hazards you could encounter in any facet of woodworking. There is the possibility of inhaling smoke or sawdust, getting these things into your eyes or orifices, or burning your extremities accidentally. All of these can be avoided with diligence, and by wearing the appropriate personal protective gear.

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