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New to scroll sawing- please help!

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Sam84

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Hi all,
Could anybody recommend a scroll saw for a newbie. I would like to start scroll sawing as a hobbie and have checked many websites with good and bad reviews on many different scroll saws. I didn't really want to spend more than £120 on a scroll saw as I am just starting out. Also I would like the scroll saw to be able to cut through 50mm.
Hope somebody can help,

Sam x
 

Clockie

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You could start by doing your cutting by hand. Outlay is very low. You will then see if you like it and what you are producing. Many people think that if I get the latest machine that some how the work will be great. What you make comes from you and your ideas and skill in hand and eye coordination. They are a few sites on the internet, usually from eastern Europe, where most of the cutting is by hand but they produce some intricate cutting.
Cutting 2" on any fretwork machine is going to take some doing. One essential requirement is good quality blades with the right tooth pattern. Cutting speed will be slow. The higher quality saws like Hegner will do it but you are approaching the practical limit of cutting.
 

loftyhermes

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Sam, welcome to the forum, cutting 50mm is about on the limit for any scroll saw, my recommendation would be to lookout for a second hand Delta with the quickset2 blade clamps with variable speed or at least two speeds. (But I'm biased 'cos I have two, a 40-540 and a 40-560)
happy scrolling
Steve
 

Sam84

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Thank you to both of you for your advice. I think I will keep doing a bit more research, I definitely want to try scroll sawing as I buy so many items made this way and I am a very creative person so definitely want to try, however I want to do it NOW haha, but I know it will be better in the long run ILife I do my research beforehand.
Thanks again Clockie and loftyhermes x
 

Gill

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I'm curious - what are you trying to cut that needs to be so thick?
 

Sam84

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Nothing as yet, would just rather have a scroll saw that could saw 50mm if needed, that's all
 

Gill

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I'm still curious :) . What are you hoping to cut? There aren't many scroll saw projects which require cutting 50mm thick wood. You're not thinking of starting out with a project that requires compound cutting, are you? That would be... ambitious. Exciting, but ambitious.

:)
 

stevebuk

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good luck cutting 2inch stuff, i regularly cut 1 inch thick oak, ash and beech but wouldn't like to cut it any thicker, thats quite a task..
 

Mike M

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I agree with the replies about cutting thick wood.
You can not use a very small blade. You need good tension, if not you will lose control over the blade.
You need good speed, if not you might start pushing too hard into the blade and again lose control.
You have to push very slow into the blade or the blade will start cutting with a bevel. Let the blade do the cutting.
Never be in a hurry with scroll sawing.
Most blades have a burr on the right side what makes the blade cut to the right, you have to move the wood some degree to the right to stay on the line.
I would not start with 50 mm thick wood. To learn scrolling, start with 12 to 20 mm thick wood. (1/2" to 3/4")
FD Mike
 

Gill

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Mike M":huybrjr8 said:
You need good speed, if not you might start pushing too hard into the blade and again lose control.
I prefer to cut my thicker wood very slowly instead. My thinking is that the progress of the cut can be impeded by swarf that is generated at the point of the cut. This means that the teeth of the blade inside the wood become bound up with sawdust so only the upper and lower sections of the blade are actually cutting. What is important is that a scroller pays attention to how much sawdust is being produced. Perhaps some scrollers find that a high speed ejects the sawdust very effectively but that is not my experience. Instead, I work at a slow speed and use as light a touch as possible to guide the workpiece, backing off frequently.

If I work at a fast speed or try to hurry, I find the part of the blade that is completely embedded in the workpiece just stops cutting because it gets bound up in the sawdust. I suspect many scrollers attribute this to their blade (no matter which brand they are using) having worn it out when really it is not the blade that is at fault but their own technique. So they remove the blade,taking with it the sawdust that has been generated, and fit a new one, only to find that it quickly loses its effectiveness too.

So, folks, it's up to you - if you use a high stroke rate to cut thick pieces of wood and you experience the difficulties that I've been discussing, you might want to try my approach instead. Make up your own minds :) .
 

Mike M

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Gill,
If it works for you fine. I use hight speed and push very slow into the blade. I let the blade do the cutting.
It gives me better control over the blade.
If you do not have enough speed, the blade has a tendency to grabb the wood and makes it jumb up and down.
If the blade gets dull, this will be a problem to remove the dust.
This has worked for me for many, many years.
FD Mike
 

stevebuk

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i must admit to doing it Mikes way, fast speed slow push but i will also try your way gill and see how i get on, i have 14 orders to complete this week so will have a go..
 

Gill

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I've been pondering this thread. From my point of view, the limitation on how effectively you can cut a thick piece of wood isn't necessarily governed by the throat of the saw - the stroke length is also important. Let's consider the Hegner Multicut 1V which has a stroke length that can be adjusted to 12mm and 15mm. The manufacturer says it will cut wood to a maximum thickness of 50mm. This means that if you try to cut a piece of wood 50mm thick, only the top 15mm and the bottom 15mm of the blade will actually clear the wood, leaving a middle 20mm where the blade never passes into the fresh air which will clear away the cut sawdust. I don't see how that sawdust can be cleared. Can anyone explain? If not, it's the stroke length of a saw that determines the thickness of wood that a saw can cut. In the case of a Hegner Multicut 1V, this is 30mm (2 x 15mm), not 50mm as claimed by the importing agent. Even a Hegner Polycut3 which has a stroke length of 24mm would struggle to cut wood that is 50mm thick!

Now I'm wondering if there's some way to test this on a saw such as a Diamond which can take blades longer than 5 inches and therefore might be capable of a longer stroke depth. Does anyone know how I might be able to adjust the stroke depth on a Diamond and find out? I would also need comparable blades to run such a test, one 5 inches long and another, say 7 inches long. I might have to ask Mike to help me here :) ; either that or I would have to buy a very fine bandsaw blade and cut it into sections of two differing lengths.

Incidentally, I see Hegner is currently running a 20% summer sale on all it's saws :) .
 

Clockie

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This started to get me thinking. When I was a boy I use to help a night watchman to cut railway sleepers into logs using a double handed 5' cross cut saw. That taught me do not to push, only pull and to rock the saw during the cut. The saw dust would fly out from the kerf. He also sang so as to keep the saw in tempo. This help to explain the cutting of thick material. The gullets between the teeth act like mini roller conveyor belt moving the saw dust along the cut, and depositing on the back stroke, little by little.
When I cutting thick timber, every few cms I just take the pressure of the cut for a moment to allow the blade to clear the saw dust. A saw with more front to back action will find it easier.
This is my take, I think.
 

pitch pine

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I have recently been cutting thick hardwood and ended up using a similar technique to Gill. I have experimented with different speeds and blades, but settled on a slow running speed with a number 9 Flying Dutchman blade. At times I tried to hurry cutting beech and ended up with burn marks. When I replaced the blade thinking it was blunt the same would happen quickly with a fresh blade.....this fits with Gills point about saw dust clearing. Mike is spot on about not rushing when scrolling, but sometimes I still do it even when I am trying not to.....but the evidence is there with a bevelled cut or burn marks.

Another factor for me is preferring the easier rhythm and noise of a slower running saw when cutting thick hardwood for an hour or so.

I haven't tried the "lubricating the blade" tricks yet with tape. What tape works for this?
 

mac1012

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hi in response to the original thread about buying a scroll i will share with you my experince and mistakes ! the old saying is true (in most cases) buy cheap buy twice.

i started out doing crafts on scroll swaw a couple of years ago and converted my 8x8 shed into a workshop i brought a cheap scroll saw and ended up buying a hegner scroll saw and i have never looked back the base model is around 375 although there is quite a few come up for sale on ebay in good condition i have the newer base model which has a beeter blower and quick release tensioning.

if you can find the extra money go for the hegner you wont regret it , if you find you dont like the hobby or just become a use once then leave it gathering dust you would get a good chunk of your money back.

i make and sell crafts in my spare time , simple but effective, things like toddlers rocking horses , wooden angels , crosses , words, love hearts etc this year i on target to make 1,000 pound profit which i pleased with bearing in mind i only do at weekends , i find it very rewarding and once you got your machine the ongoing costs are low.

yes you can get other machines which i have like a bandsaw , but with a scroll saw electric drill and a elctric hand held sander you can make some effective work even with softwoods from your locla timber merchants.

50mm is pushing it my work ranges from 4mmm ply up to about 30mm softwood , and some old pitch pine.

keep things simple to start with and you be fine

anymore help get in touch

mark
 

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