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Togalosh

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Hello Gents,

I've now develped "hand saw envy" from seeing jimi43's fabulous new addition but my budget won't stretch to such heights & I'd be scared to use it incase I scratched it !.. plus klaus might be taking a break.

..so I've been looking around for good saws but I've some qustions - as usual- as although I've books descibing tools they don't seem so specific. I know the basics like rip & crosscuting & why some are finer cutting/kerfed but I am not sure as to why there is such a diversity of saws that seem almost identical (online at least). I have been using a gents saw for dovetailing & disposable (?) saws for other jobs & they seem fairly average & I use power saws for bigger cutting. I am thinking of getting a Dovetail & Tennon saw but there's much more.

So:

Sharpening - will I need to become a saw blade specialist to be able to sharpen my own saw blades or do saw sharpening companies do a good & economical job instead?

How long will a good blade last in hobbyist use?

What are you your prefered saws that you use the most?

Do you really put down your X cut Tennon Saw & pick up your rip cut TS as you work a joint or make do with a less superior cut for some cuts by using the same saw? ( I am forseeing my own laziness & want to see if that approach is just not acceptable)

Why make a 14 & a 15 tpi/ppi dovetail saw ??

Can you recommend a book/books on tools that is so specific that I can stop asking so many questions all the time?

Thanks
 

James C

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A lot of the books I have read show people using large tenon saws with a coarse cut in a rip formation for ripping tasks and then having a small carcass saw in a crosscut formation for cutting shoulders on tenons and dovetails etc.

There is some interesting stuff about different classes of sawing on the internet, which basically surmount to doing rough cuts on things that you will plane, rasp or sand later, doing slightly finer on work that has to be accurate but isn't seen such as tenon cheeks and then taking care and time with things that are seen i.e. tenon shoulders.
 

Scouse

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I'll have a go at answering your questions, but first a disclaimer; as with everything, it's a personal thing and I don't claim my answers will be what everyone does. So my twopennuth...

Togalosh":3cjxtqlh said:
Sharpening - will I need to become a saw blade specialist to be able to sharpen my own saw blades or do saw sharpening companies do a good & economical job instead?
No. Saw sharpening is not as difficult as is often made out, with a bit of practice. Get a couple of old saws for a quid from the car boot and have a go. Go slow, 'cos you can take off but you can't put back on. For me at a guess it's a twice yearly thing if that for most saws.

Togalosh":3cjxtqlh said:
How long will a good blade last in hobbyist use?
Likely outlast you if properly used and looked after.

Togalosh":3cjxtqlh said:
What are you your prefered saws that you use the most?
Dovetail for dovetails, tenon for tenons, rip saw for ripping etc. As for makes, all of the saws I use professionally are from Lie Nielsen, again a personal choice except for a large Tyzack rip. I do have a couple of old Disston D8's and a Robert Groves DT awaiting restoration, but I will use them infrequently, more for fun in the interests of their preservation.

Togalosh":3cjxtqlh said:
Do you really put down your X cut Tennon Saw & pick up your rip cut TS as you work a joint or make do with a less superior cut for some cuts by using the same saw? ( I am forseeing my own laziness & want to see if that approach is just not acceptable)
Yes, I change saws. Again, some may not, I guess it just depends on the way you work.

Togalosh":3cjxtqlh said:
Why make a 14 & a 15 tpi/ppi dovetail saw ??
Dunno, I've never questioned it. My L/N is 15ppi and 100 year old Groves 14 ppi. I guess that's what they are? Having said that I have 2 L/N straight handled dovetail saws, one 15ppi rip and one 14ppi crosscut.

Togalosh":3cjxtqlh said:
Can you recommend a book/books on tools that is so specific that I can stop asking so many questions all the time?
Charles Hayward is a good place to start I reckon.

Hope that helps.

El.
 

Jacob

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Togalosh":2v5d4o04 said:
....Sharpening - will I need to become a saw blade specialist to be able to sharpen my own saw blades or do saw sharpening companies do a good & economical job instead?
Saw doctors will do it but it's better and cheaper to do it yourself. Not that difficult - get some practice in on a cheap one
How long will a good blade last in hobbyist use?
Life?
What are you your prefered saws that you use the most?
Sanderson and Kayser, Spear & Jackson
Do you really put down your X cut Tennon Saw & pick up your rip cut TS as you work a joint or make do with a less superior cut for some cuts by using the same saw?
You might if you had both options, but certainly not essential.
Why make a 14 & a 15 tpi/ppi dovetail saw ??
Chance. You don't need both
Can you recommend a book/books on tools that is so specific that I can stop asking so many questions all the time
I recommend him quite often - at the risk of seeming to be a fan I'd have to say that Paul Sellers book is sensible and practical on saws and sharpening.
 

Harbo

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If you want to have a go at a handle like the 2 Lawyers, Gramercy do saw kits?

Rod
 

matthewwh

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Sharpening - will I need to become a saw blade specialist to be able to sharpen my own saw blades or do saw sharpening companies do a good & economical job instead?

Sharpening a saw is no more difficult than sharpening a chisel, performance alters according to the angles used and you have to maintain consistency but with practice it will come. If you have a saw specialist reasonably local to you, they will normally make a good job and charge you no more than you would expect to pay any other skilled tradesman.

How long will a good blade last in hobbyist use?


Generations if it's looked after, rust will ruin one in a couple of weeks, inept sharpening or use can reduce the life / ruin one in a couple of minutes but as long as these two evils are kept at bay you shouldn't need to worry about wearing it out.

What are you your prefered saws that you use the most?


1) 20tpi dovetail / small tenon saw sharpened crosscut - a little slower but much smoother for dovetailing (it's an accuracy competition, not a race) can also be used for shoulder cuts for tenons. If you prefer a rip dovetail saw for ease of sharpening, you can lean the faces of the teeth back by ten degrees or so which will make it significantly smoother and less grabby. Going for a rip DT will mean you need both rip and crosscut tenons to make a functional set.

2) 13 to 15tpi rip tenon saw, this is used interchangeably with a broad bladed chisel for the long grain cheeks of tenons, halved joints etc. Depending on access and the grain direction one will be better than the other for each circumstance. It's hard to explain but will be self evident when you're doing it.

3) 13tpi crosscut tenon saw - for furniture joinery you can get just about everything done with the two above but if you are cutting bigger joints then a nice big crosscut tenon will speed things along, a small crosscut panel saw would be an alternative for the same job.

Do you really put down your X cut Tennon Saw & pick up your rip cut TS as you work a joint or make do with a less superior cut for some cuts by using the same saw? ( I am forseeing my own laziness & want to see if that approach is just not acceptable)

Yes, you only need to try crosscutting with a rip saw once to know that it is a waste of effort and makes a mess of the component. You can rip with a crosscut saw but not vice versa.

Why make a 14 & a 15 tpi/ppi dovetail saw ??

For people cutting dovetails in thicker material - 1" boards for blanket chests for example.


Can you recommend a book/books on tools that is so specific that I can stop asking so many questions all the time?


Go ahead and ask them here - it's free, it's good, you can ask further questions, and the next person googling the same question is likely to find the answers too.
 

bugbear

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matthewwh":28cwzgpm said:
Sharpening - will I need to become a saw blade specialist to be able to sharpen my own saw blades or do saw sharpening companies do a good & economical job instead?

Sharpening a saw is no more difficult than sharpening a chisel
You must find sharpening chisels a lot harder than I do :D

BugBear
 

Pete W

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matthewwh":1et5b8gj said:
Do you really put down your X cut Tennon Saw & pick up your rip cut TS as you work a joint or make do with a less superior cut for some cuts by using the same saw? ( I am forseeing my own laziness & want to see if that approach is just not acceptable)

Yes, you only need to try crosscutting with a rip saw once to know that it is a waste of effort and makes a mess of the component. You can rip with a crosscut saw but not vice versa.
Wouldn't argue with anything Matthew says, except a slight quibble here. Coarse-toothed ripsaws will wreak havoc when cutting across the grain, but fine-toothed ripsaws (like a dovetail saw) make perfectly good crosscuts. I have an Adria 15tpi dovetail saw that I use for crosscutting small stock with beautifully clean results.

I have a bad habit of buying old saws and have far too many as a result, but I think you could do just about anything with four:
* 4-6tpi rip handsaw
* 7-9tpi crosscut handsaw
* 12tpi tennon saw
*15tpi dovetail saw

And just about everything you need to know is here:
http://www.badaxetoolworks.com/my-saw-f ... nique.html
 

jimi43

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And Matthew...are you sure you can sharpen a 20tpi dovetail saw? :shock:

I'm still in awe at what Pedder did with Roberta....and there is no way on earth I could do that...even if I practised until hell froze over! :oops:

I take no shame in this as I wanted that little gem of history preserved for another 100 years not wrecked by an silly person in 100 minutes! :mrgreen:

I did make a reasonable job of a slightly coarser one though! :mrgreen:



:mrgreen: :mrgreen:

Jim
 

pedder

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Togalosh":9j6f35w4 said:
Sharpening - will I need to become a saw blade specialist to be able to sharpen my own saw blades?
If it is difficult to sharpen a saw or not depends on the state of the teeth.

To sharpen a saw, that just became a little dull (think of any modern saw after 1 years of hobby use) is very easy. All you need is one stroke per gullet. Better to exercise this at a cheap saw, though.

It is a complete different animal to file old saws that have had a few sharpenings and are often badly filed. This resharpening (reshaping the teeth indeed) takes a few saws to learn.

But even a badly sharpened saw is sharper than a dull saw.

Togalosh":9j6f35w4 said:
What are you your prefered saws that you use the most?
The longer I use saws the longer they get.
My actual favorite user saw is 14 inch long 2 inch deep saw,
0,5mm thick blade, filed 11 tpi degressive soft rip cut.
Yes, it is Jim's Harriette. Really a jack saw.

Togalosh":9j6f35w4 said:
Do you really put down your X cut Tennon Saw & pick up your rip cut TS as you work a joint
Certainly! I hate to cut rip with a crosscut saw. The first time I sawed
with the grain with a rip cut saw (instead of a laser pointed crosscut
saw from the BORG) was the most enlightning moment in using saws in my history.
But again a soft rip cut saw will do both jobs.

I hear you shouting soft rip, SOFT RIP ? What is that? Veritas' rip cut is filed at 0° fleam and 14° rake.
That is a very soft ripcut. BTW German crosscut were filed that way, fleam wasn't used .

Togalosh":9j6f35w4 said:
Why make a 14 & a 15 tpi dovetail saw??
And
a 16 tpi
a 17 tpi
a 18 tpi
a 19 tpi
a 20 tpi and
a 24 tpi, if you want. ;)

One of each? Not in my shop!

(The idea behind? Using as much edges as possible without clogging the gullets.

Wether you want to learn sharpen your old saws or buy new saws, I would buy
one well sharpened and set saw in the beginning. Because you need to know the goal.
Veritas saws are a good point to start!

Wiliam Greaves saws from Thos. Flinn are the best saws to exercise sharpening.
And after a little honing away the set, they are well users, too!

Cheers
Pedder
 

pedder

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jimi43":19r0w772 said:
And Matthew...are you sure you can sharpen a 20tpi dovetail saw? :shock:
The first saw Ive sharpened was a 20 tpi W. Tyzack sons & Turner. Put the file in the gullet. 3cm file stroke. Next gullet. 3 cm file stroke and so on. At 20 tpi you don't need to see the flats, just concentrate on equally long and equally hard strokes.

It's really easy.

Roberta is a good example for different animal. Changing from rip to cross takes some time and some training. But that is no sharpening.

Cheers Pedder
 

jimi43

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Ok wait a minute!


Pedder":6d4xxuoj said:
Togalosh wrote:
What are you your prefered saws that you use the most?

The longer I use saws the longer they get.
My actual favorite user saw is 14 inch long 2 inch deep saw,
0,5mm thick blade, filed 11 tpi degressive soft rip cut.
Yes, it is Jim's Harriette. Really a jack saw.
So let me do a count up...

I have the most beautiful TLT saw that may be unique...

I have your most favourite saw Pedder...namely Harriette...

And

I have the most difficult saw you have done...Roberta!

How on earth did I get so lucky and blessed!! 8)

Jim
 

No skills

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Quite glad this thread has come up really. I have been slowly collecting some older saws to restore and learn to sharpen (with the goal of using them obviously!). A couple look like basket cases but I think they are salvageable (for 99p plus postage worth a punt!) and the others need a sharpen and clean and a new handle on one (good little project I think). Apart from one large disson rip saw they have been very cheap to buy too, I've prolly got everything I would need for the price of one new good saw.

So if I maybe so bold to add a question or two...

What saw files should I be getting?

What saw set should I get?

My eyes are fairly good but looking at anything finer than say 15 tpi for any length of time will make me cross eyed, do you folks use magnifying glasses at all?
 

pedder

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No skills":3ogwevgo said:
What saw files should I be getting?
Matthew at workshop heaven has good ones and so hast Dieter Schmid fine-tools

No skills":3ogwevgo said:
What saw set should I get?
2 X Eclipse 77, grind one hammer finer for 14+ tpi

No skills":3ogwevgo said:
My eyes are fairly good but looking at anything finer than say 15 tpi for any length of time will make me cross eyed, do you folks use magnifying glasses at all?
Cheap reading glases (+1 more) for the tired moments.

Cheers
Pedder
 

Cheshirechappie

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On the book question, 'Hand Tools for Woodworkers' by Robert Wearing is quite comprehensive and informative. Probably best found secondhand (try http://www.abebooks.co.uk ). Another good read is 'The Anarchist's Toolchest' by Christopher Schwarz - Axminster or Classic Hand Tools can supply. The latter is the only tool book I've read that suggests which tools you should have, and why. You can disagree with the author's selections, but he does give good reasons for his choices. By way of a bonus, you get instructions on constructing a traditional pattern woodworker's toolchest, and some anarchic thoughts on the working of wood in the modern era (hence the name). Recommended.

Which handsaws do I use most? The answer is seven - but I don't use machines or power tools. As you do, you can forget the 26" rip, and the 26" crosscut. I'd be tempted to aquire a 22" 10tpi crosscut (panel saw), and a 22" 10tpi rip (for times when the backsaws are not big enough, and you want a better finish or a stopped cut which you can't get with a circular. If you've got a bandsaw, forget the rip panel.)

Backsaws - a 14" 11tpi rip for tenon cheeks and such (only recently aquired one - can't understand how I survived without one). A 12" 13tpi crosscut, and a 10" 15tpi dovetail. Maybe a very fine razor saw if you do lots of really weeny jobs, like dovetails in 1/4" stock.

In general, I'd say Pedder has a good point when he says longer is better than shorter. A few long, relaxed strokes does more work more accurately than a lot of jerky toing and froing with a short blade.

As others have said, sharpening is not desperately difficult, but needs a couple of goes to get the hang of it. Use proper sawfiles though - not engineer's threesquare jobs - too sharp in the corner for saws. The right size is one which has sides of width about double the longest filed dimension for a given saw, so you can use all three corners of the file without having uneven wear on the active part of the file faces. For a full kit of saws, you'll need about three or four different sizes of file, plus handles. For setting, Axminster sell coarse and fine pliers-type sets (from my experience, well-made ones). You'll also need a fine 8" mill saw file for jointing the toothline to keep it level - or for correcting a badly sharpened saw. A wooden straightedge (2" x 1/4" is ideal), and a home-made saw-vice, and you're all set. All you need then is good light and concentration.
 

pedder

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jimi43":2e05o0of said:
I have the most difficult saw you have done...Roberta!
Na, not the most difficult saw - not by fare. Just a little more diificult than the usual 17 tpi rip.
(The most difficult until now? A Ulmia 354 blade I retoothed and resharpened to 15 tpi crosscut was time and eye craft consuming)

jimi43":2e05o0of said:
How on earth did I get so lucky and blessed!
You're easy to make lucky. And that is the reason.
That and you're a most friendly guy! One can't play that, that is in you.

Cheers
Pedder
 

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