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Fine wood rasp
Farrier using a two-sided file, double-cut on the visible side and rasp cut against a horse's hoof

A rasp is a coarse form of file used for coarsely shaping wood or other material. Typically a hand tool, it consists of a generally tapered rectangular, round, or half-round sectioned bar of case hardened steel with distinct, individually cut teeth. A narrow, pointed tang is common at one end, to which a handle may be fitted.[1]


Rasps come in a variety of shapes—rectangular, round, and half-round—and vary in coarseness from finest, "cabinet", to most aggressive, "wood".[2] Farriers, for example, commonly use rasps to remove excess wall from a horse's hoof. They are also used in woodworking for rapidly removing material and are easier to control than a drawknife. The rough surfaces they leave may be smoothed with finer tools, such as single- or double-cut files. Rasps are used in shaping alabaster. Saws and chisels are used to rough out alabaster work.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Lye, P. F. (1993), Metalwork theory, Book 1, Nelson Thornes, pp. 12–13, ISBN 978-0-17-444313-1.
  2. ^ Paul N. Hasluck (February 2011). The Handyman's Guide: Essential Woodworking Tools and Techniques. Skyhorse Publishing Inc. p. 119. ISBN 978-1-60239-173-4.