Advice required: traditional saws and Japanese saws

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CoolNik

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The trick is to start a cut by pulling the saw back for a stroke or three, from the back of the workpiece, until there's a big enough kerf to take forward strokes.
The bigger the tooth the longer the starter back strokes required - you need 2 or 3 teeth minimum in the kerf to cut forward easily.
You would really notice this with e.g. a 4tpi rip saw - very difficult to start on a forward stroke
I think I read somewhere that a line drawn with a marking knife would actually cut the fibres of the wood - is that wrong or correct? Cheers Robyn
 

Ttrees

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Still possible to make a mess with the knifeline.
Not seen Bob's videos of late, the ones I have seem honest, and likely using the right tool for the job.
I have the same thinking, as I've got no time for something which half works, and would rather work on fixing issues like that, rather than getting the job done.
I'd rather be fatigued from doing sensible work with tools which are designed ergonomically for specific tasks, so sore muscles rather than tendons bones etc..

I have a bandsaw which covers a lot, so there is a gaping hole in my arsenal in regards to rough sawing by hand.
This is possibly evident in a lot of folks workshops.
For instance how many folks have/use a proper frame saw for ripping?
David's channel, Bob's, and very few others do.

Tom
 

CoolNik

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Still possible to make a mess with the knifeline.
Not seen Bob's videos of late, the ones I have seem honest, and likely using the right tool for the job.
I have the same thinking, as I've got no time for something which half works, and would rather work on fixing issues like that, rather than getting the job done.
I'd rather be fatigued from doing sensible work with tools which are designed ergonomically for specific tasks, so sore muscles rather than tendons bones etc..

I have a bandsaw which covers a lot, so there is a gaping hole in my arsenal in regards to rough sawing by hand.
This is possibly evident in a lot of folks workshops.
For instance how many folks have/use a proper frame saw for ripping?
David's channel, Bob's, and very few others do.

Tom
Thanks Tom, glad to hear that you think Bob is on the right path. It’s so hard to know when watching YT video, whether is a good guy with training or just a person who thinks they know all! Robyn
 

Ttrees

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My comment about the frame saw is just an observation,
and no doubt there maybe some who have one on the wall behind them,
but it should be evident whether they use it or not.

I wouldn't go as far to say that there is any singular channel out there,
that caters for nearly everyone.
For a hobby, hand focused workshop, a lot may depend on your strengths and
your procurement of timber, and the work you wish to do.

Change one of those things to suit yourself in particular, and you might have some
conflicting views, different methodology, or other ways of doing things, split vs saw etc...

I can give you my personal take to try and explain
My supply of semi precious iroko timber is from skips, so have to fill and laminate timbers which is more faff than most folks need to do, i.e wouldn't deem softwood
as worth this kind of work involved,
and have a big emphasis on hand planes, and the bench for efficiency and techniques sake, and also time/fatigue wise.
Some folks with machinery i.e what someone equipped with half of Cosman's machines might own,
might deem this the most work should they be getting slabs by the truckload.

I don't need to remove vast amounts of precious material, so might be a bit of a waste of space for a hobbiest to own a P/T
Likewise the same sorta thinking can be said for hand work also.

Along with a bandsaw, which I originally sought out to resaw guitar soundboards and make a bench beforehand, lol!
I've got a tablesaw since, as I always have particular rebating cuts to remove putty, which cannot be reasonably done in the time I wish to spend by hand.
If I happened to find some alternative cheap timber worthwhile of utilizing,
I might have say, put particular effort into getting a planer thicknesser, or even by hand ala Follansbee! but as I don't have a supply of trees nor planks which I've stumbled across, I have no need to delve down that route...yet!

I've certainly got enough timber to keep me going, a decades worth of collecting, so I can cross that path of needing timber and delving differing paths in time.
Other folks might not have a stash of material, so a forever plodding clear path might not be as influential on the tools.

So it may also be a case of what/who you happen to stumble across in the mix also, might slightly influence what you end up doing,
and get what you wish to know from whoever the horse who's talking is, provided you can actually verify what the end result is.

All the best
Tom
 
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Jacob

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I think I read somewhere that a line drawn with a marking knife would actually cut the fibres of the wood - is that wrong or correct? Cheers Robyn
Well yes that's the whole idea. The knife isn't actually used for "marking" but is used to cut those lines where a very precise edge is wanted. Most of the time a pencil line is all that is needed.
But starting a saw is the same whether you are working to a pencil line or a knife line.
Makes me wonder if the whole Japanese pull saw fashion has come about because people don't know how to start a cut with a "western" saw? Would account for their popularity with beginners?
 
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Jacob

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Still possible to make a mess with the knifeline.
Sure is. And impossible to erase.
That's why they are not used for "marking" as such but are reserved for cutting lines already marked, where a sharp cut edge is wanted.
The exception is where cut line is used for an indelible line where the setter-outer/ foreman whatever would take marks from the rod to one side of a component which the bench joiner then follows with pencil lines around the other three sides. Means the bench worker can't cock it up (perhaps!)
.......
For instance how many folks have/use a proper frame saw for ripping?
David's channel, Bob's, and very few others do.

Tom
Frame saw is a continental thing less common in the UK, for no good reason - they look like a good idea.
But a UK style rip saw, 28" long , 4 or 5 tpi, is highly effective, presumably more expensive to make than a frame equivalent.
 
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Jacob

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Really Jacob, Really ???. first pull back to create a kerf. Hells bells, those 20 years doing this stuff and i never knew that.

:rolleyes::LOL::LOL::LOL:

OF COURSE i BLOODY KNOW THAT :LOL: :LOL: :LOL:

I just can't get on with them, even my fancy pants 20 tpi or whatever it is dovetail saw. Give me Japanese every time.
Well in that case I've no idea why, as you say; "they always stick for me, especially at the start of the cut".
They don't stick for me but they certainly can if I don't start with a back stroke or two.
 
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Jacob

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This is one of the best saws ive used and over the years ive been through about 5 of them
19tpi. It is in fact tthe main saw i use for dovetails, which for me ive found best.

Veritas also make a 20tpi dovetail saw

To be honest I dont know exactly what the western dovetail saw i have is tpi wise, but its pretty fine. probably about 17tpi which is why i said "Or whatever it is"
A gents saw can be 22tpi
Modelling saw 30-40tpi
A fine razor saw can be 42tpi

So 20tpi isnt too small. Maybe for you in your experience, but a good quality Japanese saw = 19tpi, a veritas = 20tpi, thats good enough for me.
The most common UK DT saw seems to be the Spear & Jackson 8" with 20 tpi.
Blade 0.5mm thick.
Re-sharpenable - last for life.
Lots of them about. Tend to be £15 to £20 on ebay
PS I've got two, one was my dads and the other I bought new. 40 years between them - same spec, which seems to be the industry standard. The older one has an extra decorative nick in the handle.
The teeth are rip filed and aren't set but instead filed alternately from opposite sides, which gives a minimal set, enough to make the cut free. You can't "steer" a saw with such a fine kerf which makes only dead straight cuts possible - which is ideal for DTs as a "corrected" saw cut tends to show. One good reason for free-handing as then there is no temptation to try to force it to follow a line and mess it up.
 
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Craig22

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do you or any of the other chaps have the name and address of a satisfactory UK saw sharpener? I can get old saws in NZ reasonably cheaply but due to illness I am very restricted in my ability to view any prospective purchases and then there is the issue of finding someone to sharpen them. What I am thinking, subject to what you chaps think, is to purchase 3 or 4 ”old” saws, hopefully from you chaps and then have them sharpened in the UK before having them shipped out to me. Let me know what you think - I am willing to pay, of course, just need a bit of a hand up. Cheers
Robyn

I haven't used a professional sharpening service, but did a google search. Now if you search for sharpening services you get lots of hits for people who sharpen TCT circular saw blades etc. But if you search for hand saw sharpening you get some interesting options - for example Services » Jakob's Saw Revival . Prices seem reasonable, and from examples he shows it looks like if the saw is in bad shape, he grinds the original teeth off and recuts them.

Probably not the only one - just the first one I found.

Because this is reasonably close to me - about an hour drive - I might let him loose on a really old pistol grip dovetail saw I picked up a couple of years ago with teeth all over the shop, and beyond being reasonably filed (at least by me!).

Craig
 

Jacob

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I haven't used a professional sharpening service, but did a google search. Now if you search for sharpening services you get lots of hits for people who sharpen TCT circular saw blades etc. But if you search for hand saw sharpening you get some interesting options - for example Services » Jakob's Saw Revival . Prices seem reasonable, and from examples he shows it looks like if the saw is in bad shape, he grinds the original teeth off and recuts them.

Probably not the only one - just the first one I found.

Because this is reasonably close to me - about an hour drive - I might let him loose on a really old pistol grip dovetail saw I picked up a couple of years ago with teeth all over the shop, and beyond being reasonably filed (at least by me!).

Craig
Many of the bigger firms still do hand saws but it's not their main line so it might not feature in their ads. Most likely machine done, so cheaper than the all handwork service Worth asking them.
 

D_W

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Sure is. And impossible to erase.
That's why they are not used for "marking" as such but are reserved for cutting lines already marked, where a sharp cut edge is wanted.
The exception is where cut line is used for an indelible line where the setter-outer/ foreman whatever would take marks from the rod to one side of a component which the bench joiner then follows with pencil lines around the other three sides. Means the bench worker can't cock it up (perhaps!)Frame saw is a continental thing less common in the UK, for no good reason - they look like a good idea.
But a UK style rip saw, 28" long , 3 or 4 tpi, is highly effective, presumably more expensive to make than a frame equivalent.

ripping with either is a different experience. a frame saw is better for ripping a gentle curve - obviously, but harder to get really dead nuts with a clean back side and clean cut quality on straight stock.

For curved work, there's not much difference between a larger turning saw and a euro frame saw.

doing any serious resawing, though, a frame saw is useful - but not the euro type, rather the circa 1775 type. large, heavier plate (similar in profile to a carpenter saw), significant weight, strong tension.
 

CoolNik

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Well yes that's the whole idea. The knife isn't actually used for "marking" but is used to cut those lines where a very precise edge is wanted. Most of the time a pencil line is all that is needed.
But starting a saw is the same whether you are working to a pencil line or a knife line.
Makes me wonder if the whole Japanese pull saw fashion has come about because people don't know how to start a cut with a "western" saw? Would account for their popularity with beginners?
Jacob, one question I have wondered about - which side of the pencil line does one saw on? The left or right? Or does it vary according to the location of the cut? One reason I started with the Japanese saws was because I could cut down the centre of the cut line! Just that was just me. Regards, Robyn
 

CoolNik

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I haven't used a professional sharpening service, but did a google search. Now if you search for sharpening services you get lots of hits for people who sharpen TCT circular saw blades etc. But if you search for hand saw sharpening you get some interesting options - for example Services » Jakob's Saw Revival . Prices seem reasonable, and from examples he shows it looks like if the saw is in bad shape, he grinds the original teeth off and recuts them.

Probably not the only one - just the first one I found.

Because this is reasonably close to me - about an hour drive - I might let him loose on a really old pistol grip dovetail saw I picked up a couple of years ago with teeth all over the shop, and beyond being reasonably filed (at least by me!).

Craig
Thanks for all your information, Craig. I have been looking at eBay listings and have found a couple of saws offered by 123mudge. see Posting below.
 

Jacob

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Jacob, one question I have wondered about - which side of the pencil line does one saw on? The left or right? Or does it vary according to the location of the cut? One reason I started with the Japanese saws was because I could cut down the centre of the cut line! Just that was just me. Regards, Robyn
All marking up should be spot on, so in theory a perfectly accurate cut would split the pencil line down the middle, leaving half the line in place and removing the other half with the waste. Makes no difference what sort of saw you use and Japanese saw would make no difference.
This means having a slight bias towards the waste side.
But if you have already cut the line with a knife then all the saw cut would be on the waste side, leaving the non waste side of the cut line untouched, to define the edge. Still halving the line really, as the opposite side of the cut line would be in the waste side, but the non waste side of the cut would be vertical.
So basically you assume the line is central and as near as possible you split it.
 
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CoolNik

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GENTLEMEN. And ladies if there are any other than me!

Following lots of advice that I have received, I have come to the point of purchase. Many of you have suggested searching on eBay. Which I have done.

There are 2 different ways to proceed - a straight purchase of a pair of hand saws, already fixed up and sharpened (according to the ad). Please follow this link to one such pair. Disston D-8 Handsaw Pair (1896-1917 Era) - Mirror Like plates - Sharp! [5] | eBay

Now the 2nd way is to look at someone like this chap 123mudge - follow the link here:

Items for sale by 123mudge | eBay
i wondered if one or more of you would review these listings and just tell me which of his saws you would bid on if you where following the criteria set out in my initial posting at the top of the first page.

I find that I am really in need of your assistance as I don’t have enough experience to choose which saws are fit for purpose when they have had a good clean and sharpen. I won’t hold any of you responsible if, when we get the saws to a sharpener, we are told that one or 2 are not wortth fixing. I don’t want to spend more than !00-150 tops for all 3 saws. And then we need to get them sharpened….let’s try and get the saws first!

I realise that the cost of the pair of saws is more than the 100 GPB but with no sharpening. My total costs are still okay.

I appreciate each and every one of you who will take the time to look at this problem!
Cheers Robyn
 

Jacob

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I wouldn't buy Disston at all as they are collectable and tend to be expensive. Nor a matching "pair" as this would add more to the price. Nor an over restored pair as these seem to be.
Disston are perfectly OK but just ordinary saws with no special qualities - Spear & Jackson and many other makes are just as good and usually much cheaper.
Some bargains out there! e.g. 3 Vintage Saws 22”,20” 16” 8ppi | eBay and just keep the 22"
 
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1275gt

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I haven't used a professional sharpening service, but did a google search. Now if you search for sharpening services you get lots of hits for people who sharpen TCT circular saw blades etc. But if you search for hand saw sharpening you get some interesting options - for example Services » Jakob's Saw Revival . Prices seem reasonable, and from examples he shows it looks like if the saw is in bad shape, he grinds the original teeth off and recuts them.

Probably not the only one - just the first one I found.

Because this is reasonably close to me - about an hour drive - I might let him loose on a really old pistol grip dovetail saw I picked up a couple of years ago with teeth all over the shop, and beyond being reasonably filed (at least by me!).

Craig
I have used Jakob in the past via post, he does fine work.
 

paulrbarnard

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Sure is. And impossible to erase.
That's why they are not used for "marking" as such but are reserved for cutting lines already marked, where a sharp cut edge is wanted.
The exception is where cut line is used for an indelible line where the setter-outer/ foreman whatever would take marks from the rod to one side of a component which the bench joiner then follows with pencil lines around the other three sides. Means the bench worker can't cock it up (perhaps!)Frame saw is a continental thing less common in the UK, for no good reason - they look like a good idea.
But a UK style rip saw, 28" long , 4 or 5 tpi, is highly effective, presumably more expensive to make than a frame equivalent.
I use a 4tpi rip. I don’t have a bow saw. I rip all my material by hand. I do borrow a bandsaw from my dad if I want to cut thin boards 1/4 inch or so, but everything else is using traditional western handsaws.
CD86B519-1679-4762-8042-20892F9309E9.jpeg
That’s the 4tpi rip at this end. I have a selection of cross cut and rip in various tpi
 

D_W

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I think if you're new to this, you might have to bite the bullet and pay an extra hundred or (or perhaps $75 per saw, or whatever it is) for a saw that's set up, sharpened and straight.

I don't have great advice as I've not done that (I've always reconditioned the saws that I buy out of thrift), but I doubt the average person will have much success on their first couple of saws, and saws with gradual bends or teeth that are brittle aren't that uncommon (at least if you get a saw that's already done, set, and sharpened you won't have to deal with that right away).

In the US, disston D8s are usually reasonable if you look for a while. They are for practical purposes as good as any saw ever made (double tapered, good steel, not file killers but not soft) if they are not too new (if a saw is starting to look blocky around the handle area, etc, or light colored handle, pass it by). There are a lot of other second rate saws that aren't as good and don't really go any cheaper. When I was buying saws, I'd generally consider $50 for an unrefurbished large saw the going rate. I don't think anyone was doing much setup of saws and selling them as finished for less than $125-$150.

If you stick with the hobby, you'll probably end up with two or three rip saws and the same in crosscut saws. More than that starts to be overkill, but having slightly different setups (for example, a saw set to cut cherry well or even softwoods will be rough going on ash or maple) is useful.
 

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