Files & Rasps. Rasps are files made specifically for wood. Their coarse, individual teeth, punched up from the steel surface, are perfect for grating away at lumber. Both files and rasps are meant to be used between the rough cut of a saw and the smoothing of sandpaper — not instead of either one.
Using a rasp To use a rasp, hold the handle in your dominant hand, and the tip of the rasp with your other hand, as seen in the photo below. Push the rasp through the area to be shaped, but focus more on pushing forward rather than downward into the wood. Let the tool do the work.
The files and rasps are essential tools in woodworking. They are very useful to shape, polish and get more detail in wood. They are very useful to shape, polish and get more detail in wood. But not all are valid for a clean and professional job.
Woodworkers use rasps exclusively for shaping wood. As with files, they come in a fairly wide range of lengths, shapes or 'profiles', and grades or 'cuts'. You'll find rasps as short as 5" and up to about 12" long (measured by the length of the blade, excluding the handle).
Files & Rasps. Truth be told, files and rasps rank among my most reached-for tools because they're quick and efficient to use. Whether the job calls for heavy stock removal, erasing tool marks, refining curves, taming tear-out, fitting a metal part, or even repairing some other tool, there's a file or rasp that can get the job done.
Indeed, the rifloir can be used to shape. The ideal remains to use it for finishing. When using it, it is important not to force. It is better to caress the wood. Held between thumb and forefinger, the guiding hand will push the rifloir. The other hand will exercise and control the pressure. The work will always be flexible.