If you are looking for a travisher, here is another fantastic option: Allan Williams, a chairmaker and toolmaker who makes three kinds of travishers.
Recently I ordered two travishers from Allan, a standard one with a 4-1/2″-radius blade and a tighter-radius tool (3″) for fixing student mistakes and doing some work at the back edge of my seats.
Allan’s are based on the travishers made popular by Claire Minihan and Peter Galbert. Claire and Peter’s tool is the travisher I have used for more than a decade, and I have ridden it to Australia and back. I’m also fond of the travishers made (also on the Minihan/Galbert pattern) by Elia Bizzari and crew. All these travishers usually require quite a wait to get (though they are worth it.)
Now you have a third great option with Allan’s travishers. They are made to a very high standard. They arrive insanely sharp. And they work as well as any travisher I’ve ever used.
If you make regular-head stick chairs, the 4-1/2″-radius tool is all you need. If you want to explore some tight or shallow curves, Allan offers tools for that.
My only slight complaint is that the blades in Allan’s travishers are secured with Allen-head screws (makes sense when you think of it). I prefer slotted screws because I always have a #8 screwdriver on the bench. I will swap those screws out during my next trip to the hardware store. No big deal.
Otherwise, I recommend Allan’s tools with no reservation. They are fantastic tools that will last the rest of your chairmaking life.
— Christopher Schwarz
P.S. I also recommend the travishers from James Mursell at Windsor Workshops, but those require a separate blog entry to explain fully….