Never begin sanding on the wood of any carving project until you have completely finished carving it. The small particles of abrasive that lodge in the grain can dull your carving tools fast, and can quickly destroy all the benefits of using good sharpening equipment and techniques.
To get professional-looking splices in wiring without electrical tape, try head-shrinkable tubing. Slip a tube on one of the wires before splicing. After splicing, move it over the splice and apply heat with a heat gun. The tubing will shrink down for a neat, protective covering. You can buy tubes in multiple sizes, as well as shrinkable wire caps to use in place of screw-on wire nuts. They’re perfect for work on vehicles, trailers, underground and pool wiring, or for outdoor lighting or sprinkler systems.