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MikeW

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Making saws or making saws work better is a great way of spending an evening. Just reshaping or making a handle from scratch can make a saw feel better and work better.

Last night after dinner, I worked on the prototype for a series of half-back saws for bench use. So far, there are 12-15 that will be finished in this style.

I still need to do the final shaping of the handle and drill the holes for handle and blade. The it'll be refiled and ready for the bench. The blade is 19". Handles are being made from Bubinga. This one is a few hours from being finished.

Lighter than a backsaw of comparable size, the little bit of a back made from brass flatstock adds much stiffness. The picture is a bit blurry, so sorry about that.



Mike
 

PowerTool

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Piccy is quite clear enough,handle looks nice - and it's nice to see someone else with a bench that looks like it is "mid-use" (never trust anyone who always has a tidy bench :wink: )
 

Philly

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Mike
Very intriguing! So (showing my ignorance) is the half-back a real saw or did you invent it?
Cheers
Philly :D
 

Alf

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It's real; not sure, but was it another of Disston's bright ideas originally? As everyone says, judging by the large numbers of them you don't see, it seems very few people were convinced they needed one. Gotta say I'm one of them, but they seem to be "in" at the moment - not many as fancy as Wayne Anderson's though, I imagine.

Could be you'll sell more of them than Henry did, Mike. :lol:

Cheers, Alf
 

mahking51

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Mike
What do you start with as material for the blade?
How do you process this into the blade?
Heat treatment?
'Tis a thing of beauty, just like my wife, who is looking over my shoulder :p
Regards
Martin
 

martyn2

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PowerTool":1kgzli2v said:
(never trust anyone who always has a tidy bench :wink: )
thank god for that ! Nice mike have you make the handels to suit you or use a standard patten.
 

MikeW

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Alf":1lfayyso said:
It's real; not sure, but was it another of Disston's bright ideas originally? As everyone says, judging by the large numbers of them you don't see, it seems very few people were convinced they needed one. Gotta say I'm one of them, but they seem to be "in" at the moment - not many as fancy as Wayne Anderson's though, I imagine.
Could be you'll sell more of them than Henry did, Mike. :lol:
Cheers, Alf
And just think what "everyone" says about boat anchors. :wink:

The ones I see on the bay are typically English halfbacks. Though in the last 3 weeks or so a forum friend (another forum) just bought 2 user made ones that are quite old and two Disstons.

At its most basic, it is just a saw of a size that makes work at/on the bench easier than a heavier backsaw of the same size. The handles on English ones tend to be straight down the teeth line (little or no spring). The Disstons seem to be sprung too much. In both cases I feel the handle being set off the back so far is bad for control.

So, making a few is the option I chose.

Thank you for your vote of confidence and encouragement.

Mike
 

Alf

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MikeW":1gi0p3t5 said:
And just think what "everyone" says about boat anchors. :wink:
But you do see a lot of boat anchors about though. :wink:

MikeW":1gi0p3t5 said:
The ones I see on the bay are typically English halfbacks.
That's interesting, 'cos I was moved to think they were 'Murrican by the complete lack of any info in Salaman's dictionary - evidentally he missed a trick.

Cheers, Alf
 

MikeW

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Alf":tuchx010 said:
MikeW":tuchx010 said:
And just think what "everyone" says about boat anchors. :wink:
But you do see a lot of boat anchors about though. :wink:
MikeW":tuchx010 said:
The ones I see on the bay are typically English halfbacks.
That's interesting, 'cos I was moved to think they were 'Murrican by the complete lack of any info in Salaman's dictionary - evidentally he missed a trick.
Cheers, Alf
I do not have the Salamander book and I suspect neither of our interest levels are high enough to fully research these things--just enough evidently to water on someone's parade. For which I am eternally thankful.

The saws I have seen, including Duboff's recent posting on the OT list, that are english in origin--and american for that matter--could easily have been modified saws.

That Disston made and sold some No. 8 half-backs is a fact. Who to and where those examples are is a mystery. About as much a mystery as just where the heck are all the millions of back saws including DT saws, tenon saws and the larger back saws used in mitre boxes (that's miter for the 'murrican readers). Heck, where are all the millions of mitre boxes to begin with?

To argue that they are worthless based on extant examples is a pretty pointless argument. Even if they were to be found with any regularity, to you, Alf, it would still be worthless. And that's fine. Just as metal plough planes (that would be plow planes for the 'murrican readers) are worthless to, well, most anyone who tries to use one. That they are more readily found is also a pointless argument. That so many are found complete, in box, should testify to one and all that they were immediately found to be worthless, reboxed, set on a shelf and stored until someone who realized they could sell them did so.

That saws and even chisels seemingly abound, they do so owing to the shear numbers sold. And many if not most saws are in some state of being completely used up. Unlike so called multi-planes...the Planning Mill in a box. Still, in a box btw.

But should your interest rise to the occasion, do make sure to research out saws named something other than half-back. That was most likely Disston's marketing department run amok. Look at extant examples using terms such as cabinet maker, pattern maker or table saw. And then look through every makers' catalogs. There could be a terminology difference. Surely you don't rely solely on the Salamander book, do you?

Cheers,
Mike
 

Alf

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Mike,

Lighten up, there's a good chap. I'm not doing anything on your parade, and I'm not saying they're worthless. Just that I've never really seen where they come in the great scheme of things and neither could any of the sources I found. And no, I don't rely solely on any one source of information, or just on the term "half back". I did quite an extensive search before posting and actually tried to add some more info for those who are interested. If it makes you feel any better (though why in hell my opinion should matter anyway, I don't know) if I was going to rain on anyone's parade, it'd be Wayne's. One look at his example and I can't help wondering how you could keep it sharp without knackering the swan on the toe sooner rather than later.

Sheesh, what's got into everyone today? All as prickly as porcupines. :roll:

Cheers, Alf
 

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