KudoZ home » French to English » Other

bisaiguë

English translation: mortising axe

Advertisement

Login or register (free and only takes a few minutes) to participate in this question.

You will also have access to many other tools and opportunities designed for those who have language-related jobs
(or are passionate about them). Participation is free and the site has a strict confidentiality policy.
GLOSSARY ENTRY (DERIVED FROM QUESTION BELOW)
French term or phrase:bisaiguë
English translation:mortising axe
Entered by: jonno
Options:
- Contribute to this entry
- Include in personal glossary

18:21 Nov 11, 2003
French to English translations [PRO]
/ carpentry
French term or phrase: bisaiguë
XIXth century carpentry tool
iron bar on a short middle handle, with one chisel blade and one skew chisel blade
Cheers
jonno
Local time: 02:42
besaiguë : "mortising axe"
Explanation:
The Robert prefers "besaiguë", noting that it appears as early as 1160 [!!] and comes from the Low Latin _bisacuta_, "deux fois aiguë".

Gilbert's translation works, though it could also be called a "mortising axe".

Used for "chopping" mortises (and, perhaps, large tenons) : if *really* sharp it could work very well, though very small strokes would be necessary, in order to keep control of where it struck.

I've never seen one in the U.S. --American carpenters apparently preferred to use drills (initially) and "mortising chisels" (for "trueing up" the walls), including a "corner chisel" for getting the corners right. These would be stuck by a mallet.

I would suspect that one couldn't use such an axe to actually *begin* the mortise, because it would be too difficult to control *exactly* where the first stroke hit --and mortising has to be done with considerable precision.

But, once begun with a regular mortising chisel, the axe might be quicker to use for cutting to size and depth.

The principle is that the momentum generated by swinging the heavy, double head obviates the use of a mallet.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 28 mins (2003-11-11 18:50:06 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

\"Swinging\" is perhaps too strong a word to use, in that last sentence.

I doubt if there was much \"swing\" to it ; but just short movements of such a heavy chisel would work fine, again providing it was kept razor sharp.

In this way, an analogous tool might be a \"slick\", which is a very, very large (12-18 inches long, 3-4 wide) chisel --it is never struck, but rather moved across the surface of a piece of wood, the blade dead flat on it, and works because of the momentum its weight gives it.

A lovely tool to use.

Wish I hadn\'t sold mine.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 8 days (2003-11-20 13:57:11 GMT) Post-grading
--------------------------------------------------

I think that Bourth may well have the \"technical\" name for this thing.

http://assoc.wanadoo.fr/bois.tcb/twibill.html

And, as I also said, he is right about this tool not being \"swung (or struck)\", but pushed, like a slick. If such tools are kept *really* sharp (i.e., if you can, literally, shave with them), when they are moved the mass of the iron imparts considerable momentum (and power) to them, while the user has maximum control, using both hands.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 8 days (2003-11-20 14:04:24 GMT) Post-grading
--------------------------------------------------

Perhaps a moderator can modify the glossary entry:

bisaiguë > mortising axe or twibill (twybill)

?
Selected response from:

Christopher Crockett
Local time: 20:42
Grading comment
Sorry to not answer earlier, bit of a rush on. Thanks indeed. Never would have thought of it. I've added a note to my additional query to explain my choice.
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

Advertisement


Summary of answers provided
4 +2mortise axetoubabou
5 +1twibill, twybillxxxBourth
5besaiguë : "mortising axe"
Christopher Crockett


  

Answers


2 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +2
bisaiguë
mortise axe


Explanation:
--

toubabou
Local time: 20:42
Native speaker of: Native in FrenchFrench
PRO pts in pair: 187

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  NancyLynn: exact !
2 mins

agree  ArchyR: Confirmed in Kettridge's Tech Dict: mortise-axe (double-ended)
3 hrs
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

3 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5 peer agreement (net): +1
twibill, twybill


Explanation:
As an alternative.
<<twibill, twybill 1. A kind of axe with two cutting edges; formerly used for cutting mortises - 1686 ...>>
[Shorter Oxford]

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 2003-11-12 00:57:55 (GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

As shown in Dicobat, the bisaiguë resembles less and axe than one of those (modern) truncheons or fighting sticks the police use, a stick with a handle projecting from it at right angles towards the middle. Except that the bisaiguë is a heavy steel bar, with chisel points at each end, and the handle is smackbang in the middle, so it can be used with equal efficiency either way. I rather get the impression that it is not something that is swung (or struck) so much as pushed, a bit like one of those \"elbow planes\" (plane with a handle at the front end, that attaches to the forearm at the back, thus leaving the other hand free to hold the workpiece).

xxxBourth
Local time: 02:42
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 18679

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Christopher Crockett: I think you may be right, obscure name though it is: http://assoc.wanadoo.fr/bois.tcb/twibill.html We must remember that, before the 19th c., all tools were produced one at a time, and there were lots of individual variants in their appearance. And names
8 days
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

20 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5
bisaiguë
besaiguë : "mortising axe"


Explanation:
The Robert prefers "besaiguë", noting that it appears as early as 1160 [!!] and comes from the Low Latin _bisacuta_, "deux fois aiguë".

Gilbert's translation works, though it could also be called a "mortising axe".

Used for "chopping" mortises (and, perhaps, large tenons) : if *really* sharp it could work very well, though very small strokes would be necessary, in order to keep control of where it struck.

I've never seen one in the U.S. --American carpenters apparently preferred to use drills (initially) and "mortising chisels" (for "trueing up" the walls), including a "corner chisel" for getting the corners right. These would be stuck by a mallet.

I would suspect that one couldn't use such an axe to actually *begin* the mortise, because it would be too difficult to control *exactly* where the first stroke hit --and mortising has to be done with considerable precision.

But, once begun with a regular mortising chisel, the axe might be quicker to use for cutting to size and depth.

The principle is that the momentum generated by swinging the heavy, double head obviates the use of a mallet.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 28 mins (2003-11-11 18:50:06 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

\"Swinging\" is perhaps too strong a word to use, in that last sentence.

I doubt if there was much \"swing\" to it ; but just short movements of such a heavy chisel would work fine, again providing it was kept razor sharp.

In this way, an analogous tool might be a \"slick\", which is a very, very large (12-18 inches long, 3-4 wide) chisel --it is never struck, but rather moved across the surface of a piece of wood, the blade dead flat on it, and works because of the momentum its weight gives it.

A lovely tool to use.

Wish I hadn\'t sold mine.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 8 days (2003-11-20 13:57:11 GMT) Post-grading
--------------------------------------------------

I think that Bourth may well have the \"technical\" name for this thing.

http://assoc.wanadoo.fr/bois.tcb/twibill.html

And, as I also said, he is right about this tool not being \"swung (or struck)\", but pushed, like a slick. If such tools are kept *really* sharp (i.e., if you can, literally, shave with them), when they are moved the mass of the iron imparts considerable momentum (and power) to them, while the user has maximum control, using both hands.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 8 days (2003-11-20 14:04:24 GMT) Post-grading
--------------------------------------------------

Perhaps a moderator can modify the glossary entry:

bisaiguë > mortising axe or twibill (twybill)

?

Christopher Crockett
Local time: 20:42
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 436
Grading comment
Sorry to not answer earlier, bit of a rush on. Thanks indeed. Never would have thought of it. I've added a note to my additional query to explain my choice.
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)




Return to KudoZ list


KudoZ™ translation help
The KudoZ network provides a framework for translators and others to assist each other with translations or explanations of terms and short phrases.



See also:



Term search
  • All of ProZ.com
  • Term search
  • Jobs
  • Forums
  • Multiple search