Introduction: Traditional Inuit Style Snow Goggles

About: Professional work in various electrical and mechanical fields, obscure sense of humour and typically willing to help... Currently under contract designing environmental monitoring equipment.

Not sure how to explain the evolution into this project.

I decided to go old school and use hand tools to make these happen.

This whole process took me less than one afternoon to complete


6 inches of a spruce 1X4

Leather strap

Hand files

Hand saw

wood carving chisels

Sanding paper

Acrylic paint and varnish

Step 1: Basic Shape

I have included the original template that I started from

The wood was marked and all unwanted wood was removed.

This is a free form exercise.

I began by marking the centre line then started to remove material for the bridge of my nose using a round wood rasp.

I then marked a rough goggle shape and removed material from one side using a hand saw and a flat wood rasp.

This outlined side was used to make a template which was then copied to the other side where material was then removed to may it symmetrical.

Step 2: Wood Removal

On the inside I used hand carving chisels to remove the bulk of the material.

I continued this until both eye cups were deep enough and symmetrical.

I occasionally worked on the outside as well to refine the shape.

Step 3: Outside Shaping

Once I was OK with the inside carving I focused shaping the outside.

The form kind of evolved while I was working

The wood was shaped using wood rasps and carving tools.

The shapes were refined as material was removed.

Shaping continued both inside and outside.

Once the shaping was finished then I focused on sanding the forms until they were smooth and all tool marks were removed.

Step 4: Drill

I couldn't find my hand drill so I broke and reluctantly used my Milwaukee for this part.

The eye slits were taped then marked for drilling.

This a series of holes in line, I used carving tools to make the slits and strap holes.

The rough edges were smoothed with needle files and sanding papers.

Step 5:

I did not like the light colour of the wood so I chose to stain it by wiping acrylic paint on it with a clean cloth. Once dry all surfaces were coated with varnish.

Step 6: Straps

I prepared some 1 inch strips of deerskin by cutting small slit in one end as shown and feeding it through the strap holes the looping the strap through the slit.

The straps when tied remain tight yet forgiving when worn.

Snow Challenge

First Prize in the
Snow Challenge