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Fidget

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Good afternoon

I recently bought a couple of saws through Gumtree only cost me a fiver. Nothing special, a Spear & Jackson tenon saw and an unmarked Gent's saw, not in bad condition, virtually no rust but they are both very blunt.

My question is, which saw file do I buy to sharpen them? The tenon saw seems to have 12 TPI and the gent's saw is 16 TPI. There are a multitude of files out there and as this will be my first time trying to sharpen a saw, I don't know which one I need.

Can anyone help please :?
 

Ttrees

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Andy Lovelock has made the best video on the subject that I have ever watched, titled sharpening western saws.
Just downloaded his video again on youtube.
It's about two hours long so put the kettle on :D
He gives links to a few sources, I got mine from axminster
Tom
 

D_W

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Lots of guides about file size. Just make sure you get a file fine enough for each, and buy something reputable.

I'd suggest that if either is crosscut, just file both rip for now on your first go. A 12 tpi crosscut saw filed rip but with relaxed hook (which is how it will be already) still does OK crosscutting.

You'll find crosscut filing pretty difficult for a first go, especially if there is significant wear on teeth. You can finish from rip to crosscut later from the rip teeth that you file, but perhaps 1 in 20 will file a crosscut saw well their first time.
 

Just4Fun

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I generally use a Bahco saw file. It was quite cheap and does the job. If I can't lay my hands on my Bahco saw file (sometimes my tools hide) I just use a no-name 3-cornered file and it also seems to do a good job. Perhaps it doesn't matter what file you use so long as you use it often enough.
 

Nigel Burden

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I use Bahco files and find them ok.

As DW said, file rip cut for your first attempts, and make sure that the files face has about twice the width of the depth of the saw tooth. For a 12 tpi I use a double ended 6 inch 190-7-2. This might be a bit large for a 16 tpi. If I remember correctly I found a chart on the net giving the size of files needed.
It might have been on Paul Sellers website, but he appears to be offline at the moment. Another point, make sure that you have good light.

Tom Lie Nielson has a video on sharpening.

Nigel.
 

katellwood

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for sharpening a fine gents saw I have had success with a cheap diamond file set from aldi/lidl which contained a triangular file.

The corners are extremely sharp which I find an issue with traditional metal files as as they wear the gullet on the saw becomes too big
 

Fidget

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Thanks for your advice everyone.

I have just bought a Bahco 190-07-02 and I think I've got that diamond needle file set from Aldidl if I can find them :roll: and I've got a good light above my workbench. :)

i will also check out the videos (although 2 hours does seem rather long)

:ho2
 

Bm101

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At a small wood work show recently.
Was happy enough to spend a short time with the guvnor of bad axe toolworks on a sharpening heads up tutorial.
It was a revelation.
The bare bones are here:

http://www.badaxetoolworks.com/maintenance.php

Have to admire a company so proud of their product they will show you it's secrets.
 

Bm101

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Also. What struck me. For every tooth.
He sighted Up and Along the angle of the draw.
Then he went faint practice motion twice. Did the move with little pressure. Then he did it in one stroke. No messing.
 

Droogs

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As ever, I recommend to below to anyone wanting a new set of saw files:

http://www.tomefeteira.com/saw_files.html

they don't chip or break on the corner faces like the newer bahco's do and last for ages and price-wise are a good deal even including postage. Once there you probably will end up getting all the files you need as they have a massive range available

hth
 

Sheffield Tony

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I don't see anyone mentioning it above, but the point of a proper saw file is that it leaves a rounded bottom to the gullet, not a sharp point which might concentrate stress to allow a crack to start. For really fine pitched saws - fine dovetail and gents saws, hopefully they will not be seeing much stress so triangular needle files will do.

Sorry if grandmothers and eggs is relevant.
 

katellwood

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Sheffield Tony":1w6oj02d said:
I don't see anyone mentioning it above, but the point of a proper saw file is that it leaves a rounded bottom to the gullet, not a sharp point which might concentrate stress to allow a crack to start. For really fine pitched saws - fine dovetail and gents saws, hopefully they will not be seeing much stress so triangular needle files will do.

Sorry if grandmothers and eggs is relevant.
Yes totally agreed however what I was attempting to identify is that what wears first on a traditional file is the corners which in my experience renders the file unusable for cutting into a corner (gullet) for fine saws the diamond file does not wear so quickly on the corners

I recently re-cut a large crosscut to rip with 4 tpi, the files i used quickly wore on the corners so to combat this I ran a hacksaw into the gullet prior to filing, worked a treat and enabled a lot more use from each file
 

Sheffield Tony

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Ah yes, I see what you mean. I used the hacksaw trick too when I have cut teeth from scratch, easier to position because you can see what you're doing too !
 

D_W

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Sheffield Tony":34hbosdp said:
I don't see anyone mentioning it above, but the point of a proper saw file is that it leaves a rounded bottom to the gullet, not a sharp point which might concentrate stress to allow a crack to start. For really fine pitched saws - fine dovetail and gents saws, hopefully they will not be seeing much stress so triangular needle files will do.

Sorry if grandmothers and eggs is relevant.
I'm curious if the saw teeth vs. the file life is really the reason for slightly rounded gullets. The older small size saw files have pretty narrow edges - the narrower the edge, the harder it is to make the file, but files with narrower edges will cover a wider range of tooth size before the gullet is so rounded that dust will pack in it on small saws.

Bahco are sort of on the other end - the edges are fairly blunt, but they are excellent files. You can't, however, go a few sizes to large on a really small saw as the tooth will look like a tiny bandsaw tooth and dust will pack in it.

Back to the point, though - I think the rounded larger edge on a saw file is beneficial to the file, too, to prevent tooth loss, which causes subsequent teeth to go down like dominoes over a filing session.

I'm sure there are saws with cracks at the bottom of the gullets, but I've never had one.

Varying roundness creates an issue for folks filing a lot of different saws, though. If you're sourcing files these days and buying whatever is reasonable, the luxury of quick refiling can be lost if you're filing a larger saw with a narrower edge than the prior filing session.

I use mostly hand tools and generally will give a rip saw a 3 or 5 minute filing (at the most) before each project. I tend to use files longer than suggested by most guides, but I'm sure I do less metal removal with each use, too. Varying edge sizes drive me bonkers, so I have tried to keep a number of files of each type on hand and mark what i use.
 

Hattori-Hanzo

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Lots of helpful tips thanks guys.

I recently purchased a new Nicholson Extra Slim Taper Saw File and am pretty disappointed with the quality of it.

think I'll give Bahco a try next time,
or Vallorbe files which I've heard good things about, has any one got their new files are they as good as they used to be?
 

ED65

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Hattori-Hanzo":jd26hd4v said:
I recently purchased a new Nicholson Extra Slim Taper Saw File and am pretty disappointed with the quality of it.
Yeah, despite Nicholson's repeated claims that they've matched quality in their new production centres (primarily Mexico, not sure if they still have a facility in Brazil) pics of actual files out in the marketplace clearly show otherwise. It's a crying shame as they used to produce some of the best files and rasps of certain types and now none of them can be bought sight unseen, or perhaps at all.

Nicholson isn't the only previously good name that has seen a steep nosedive in production standards or QC or both.

An overall drop in quality of files is one reason that many regular visitors to car boots will pick up any triangular file they find to build up a stock. I started late and pickings are slim over here but I probably have enough files to last me out the next decade (edit: even if I don't resharpen any), by which point I imagine I'll have doubled or tripled my current collection. It's likely my eyesight will fail me long before I'd ever use them, but just in case....
 

Fidget

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My Bahco file arrived the day before yesterday and I duly set about ripcut filing my saws when I found some time yesterday evening.

I am very impressed and now have two saws which don't feel like they are just rubbing the wood into submission. Well worth the fiver spent on Gumtree.

I tried the Tomo Feteira website Droogs but all the links lead to 'Error 404 page not found' which is a shame as I would like to try them, but overall very pleased with the Bahco.

Hattori, loving your thread on the plane build. I'm sure you will be pleased with a Bahco
 

Hattori-Hanzo

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Funnily enough after getting my new Nicholson file I went through my old file set that my boss gave me and came across a double end Nicholson saw file of which the quality looks greatly superior.
I don't know the exact age of this file but it's got to be well over 40 years old and it still cuts beautifully after a vinegar bath.
Don't think this new one is going to last as long :(

Thanks fidget, glad you're enjoying the thread. I'm really enjoying making it though it is hard work!
 
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