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By Argus
#1332225
MikeG. wrote:
Orraloon wrote:I am usually averse to sharpening anything smaller than 12tpi ......


12? Really? That's really quite coarse. That rules out most tenon saws.



True that...... but the point most of us are making is that diminishing eyesight trumps pure size when it comes to sharpening. Even with the best lighting available, we can't see as clearly as was once the case.......
By mrbadexample
#1336788
This is a handy thread. :)

I have acquired a bunch of woodworking tools which were once owned by my great uncle Fred. Amongst them is a tiny gents saw with, as best as I can tell, 26 tpi. He probably looked after it once but it's in a poor state now with very worn teeth. I'd like to have a go at getting it useable again.

I've never sharpened a saw before, but I was also given a tenon saw with 12tpi which I'll practise on first. I've watched Paul Sellers so all that's left is to have a go.

What I really need to know is what saw file I need for such a small saw, and if one file will do both saws. Any recommendations please?

Thanks.
By Cheshirechappie
#1336805
mrbadexample wrote:What I really need to know is what saw file I need for such a small saw, and if one file will do both saws. Any recommendations please?

Thanks.


No, one file won't do both 26tpi and 12tpi. For the finer teeth, you'll need a three-square (triangular) needle file, preferably one of the shorter (140mm long) ones, and for the 12tpi something close to a 5" slim saw file.

Also, unless your eyesight is very young and sharp, you will find some sort of magnification will help with the smaller teeth. I'm short-sighted, so I take my glasses off and work close, but other people have recommended the budget-priced magnifying glasses sold as reading glasses, or a headband magnifier if funds permit. Good, bright lighting is pretty much essential, too.

Good luck with the small saw - getting all the teeth the same height will need a bit of care. You may need two or three goes - run a flat file along the tops of the teeth to level them up if you don't get it spot-on first time, then try again with the three-square.

P.S. - This is a long video (over 2 hours!) but it goes through all aspects of saw sharpening in great detail, and is well worth the effort of watching. It covers things in much greater detail than Mr Sellers does.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u-_MF2Mnxwc
By mrbadexample
#1336848
Cheshirechappie wrote:No, one file won't do both 26tpi and 12tpi. For the finer teeth, you'll need a three-square (triangular) needle file, preferably one of the shorter (140mm long) ones, and for the 12tpi something close to a 5" slim saw file.


Thank you. I've found a suitable needle file (3" long cutting surface), so I'm actually in a position to have a go before getting to the tenon saw.

Should I wait and practise on the easiest one first? :?: That doesn't sound like something I'd normally do. :roll:
By Cheshirechappie
#1336878
The usual advice is to practice on something with larger teeth before attempting a fine-toothed saw, but I suppose if you can successfully sharpen a 26tpi saw, you'll be able to tackle anything saw-shaped! And if that's what you've got the tools for, why not have a go? If the first attempts are not that good, just joint the toothline straight, reshape the teeth, and have another go.

(Do have a watch (or two) of Andy Lovelock's video first, though. You'll have a much better idea of what you need to do, and how to go about it, after digesting it.)
By Nigel Burden
#1336954
I personally struggle with anything smaller than fourteen tpi. Practice on something larger and then progress to the smaller teeth as Cheshire Chappie said. Make sure that you have very good light.

Nigel.
By mrbadexample
#1336970
Cheshirechappie wrote:The usual advice is to practice on something with larger teeth before attempting a fine-toothed saw, but I suppose if you can successfully sharpen a 26tpi saw, you'll be able to tackle anything saw-shaped! And if that's what you've got the tools for, why not have a go? If the first attempts are not that good, just joint the toothline straight, reshape the teeth, and have another go.

(Do have a watch (or two) of Andy Lovelock's video first, though. You'll have a much better idea of what you need to do, and how to go about it, after digesting it.)


I've had a watch - very informative. I've a saw file on order so I'll try the tenon first. I'm not expecting much but don't reckon I can make it much worse. :)

The little saw will need more care, I think. The teeth are unevenly worn so it will need jointing first.

What's the easiest way to make a reasonable handle for this needle file please?
By Cheshirechappie
#1337039
Many moons ago, I bought a needle file handle. It was made of blue plastic, roughly triangular in section, and had a brass chuck to hold the file's stem. It's possibly the most uncomfortable file handle I've ever had the misfortune of using.

Needing a small handle in a hurry one day (for a small saw file, as it happens), I drilled a hole in the end of a piece of dowel, stuffed the file's tang into it, cut off the dowel and rounded the end roughly with a knife. Amazingly comfortable - just nestles nicely in the palm of the hand, and the roughness (within reason) doesn't matter a jot. No ferrule - the sort of force a small file needs to use it makes one unnecessary. Didn't bother with a finish, either. Took all of five minutes to make.

For a needle file, you may have to try one or two sizes of drill to get a nice tight fit on the stem, but the knurled bits should help in keeping it in place. If the first one isn't to your liking, just sling it on the fire and make another.

What size of dowel? Well, within reason, whatever you have to hand. No dowel? Just whittle a piece of any old offcut, or a bit of stick, whatever. No need of fancy finish, just something that sits nicely in the hand is all that's needed.

Not a bad habit to get into, making your own tools, or parts thereof, when needed. It can save a lot of bother and many pennies. Careful, though - tool making can become an addictive pastime all of it's own!
By Argus
#1337041
For handles, I tend to use old wine-bottle corks on small files.

The type that you get from Cava or Champagene type bottles - i.e. have a rounded end to them and will fit into the palm, are ideal.
Just shove the tang in the blind end. So far I've had no issue with them coming off.
User avatar
By AndyT
#1337046
I think the last two replies cover the ground nicely, whether you have ready access to champagne or old sticks! Make your lifestyle choice wisely now.
By mrbadexample
#1337131
I'm in the stick club. :lol:

I did consider fashioning a triangular handle that would, if correctly aligned, serve as an indicator of the face alignment. :idea:

Here's the saw in question:
DSCF3292.JPG
DSCF3294.JPG
By Hand Plane
#1337180
Mastering saw sharpening has been on my agenda for a while (previous attempts not being very successful) and the above comments and particularly the Andy Lovelock video are very interesting and useful.

However the subject of saw setting pliers needs addressing.

There seems to be a scarcity of new tools/manufacturers. I have emailed Spear and Jackson about their current model as the range of teeth which can be set is not included on their website.

There are plenty Eclipse 77 on ebay, but I have seen an article that they came in two anvil sizes, one for 4 - 12 tpi, and the other for >12tpi. However from the adverts I have seen on ebay, nothing has been included regarding which size of tool is for sale.

Does anyone know how they may be distinguished (eg anything on the handle)?

Does anyone know the width of the anvil for saws with >12tpi as all of my saws fall into that category?
User avatar
By AndyT
#1337202
I have read that it's easy to remove the anvil and file it down to suit.
I've also seen it said that on tiny teeth it's feasible to slightly twist a slim screwdriver in each gullet.
User avatar
By Ttrees
#1337215
Hand Plane wrote:
There are plenty Eclipse 77 on ebay, but I have seen an article that they came in two anvil sizes, one for 4 - 12 tpi, and the other for >12tpi. However from the adverts I have seen on ebay, nothing has been included regarding which size of tool is for sale.

Does anyone know how they may be distinguished (eg anything on the handle)?

Does anyone know the width of the anvil for saws with >12tpi as all of my saws fall into that category?

I believe that the no.77s with the red paint on the inside of the handle are for finer teeth.
If you see a good photo of these together you might notice that the design of the finer type doesn't have the raised or haunched part of the main casting.
User avatar
By deema
#1337224
TTrees has highlighted the difference between the two eclipse setters. The only thing to add is that the numbers around the anvil are just that numbers. They do not relate to the tooth count. They are just a reference for repeat setting of the anvil.

Buy any Eclipse saw set and just take it apart (very easy) and file the hammer to match the tooth size you want. I small hammer will set big teeth just as well and small ones. There are steel and bronze versions, the steel ones go for very little and do exactly the same job!

One other thing to mention. Saw files have six cutting faces, it’s the edges that do virtually all of the work and wear out quickly. A standard triangular file will normally only have three cutting faces, the flat sides, and arnt any use for sharpening saws.