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Tenon v Dovetail saw

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sxlalan

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I am looking at buying either a Roberts & Lee Tenon or Dovetail saw (see here). What is the recommended TPI for each of these? Would the 8" 16pt Tenon saw be good for both tenons and dovetails? Are there differences between the 2 other than TPI?

thanks

Alan

Mod edit: Moved to Hand Tools to catch the eye of more opinions.
 

Alf

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sxlalan":18d1q8mb said:
I am looking at buying either a Roberts & Lee Tenon or Dovetail saw (see here).
Sure? :?

sxlalan":18d1q8mb said:
What is the recommended TPI for each of these?
Alas, it depends on who you listen to. Take two respected authorities on such things; R A Salaman, author of the Dictionary of Woodworking Tools and Charles Hayward, author of lots of stuff and one-time editor of The Woodworker.

Salaman firmly says a Tenon saw should be 16-20" long with 10ppi (points per inch)
Hayward says between 14-16" long and 12-14ppi. Salaman would call that a Sash saw in length and a Carcase verging on Dovetail for ppi.

Helpful? Not in the slightest. But it may illustrate that there isn't really a right answer to that one, not least due to extremely confusing terminology... Depends on what you envisage using it for, size of work and so forth.

sxlalan":18d1q8mb said:
Would the 8" 16pt Tenon saw be good for both tenons and dovetails?
Only if they were quite small tenons, I think. A nice all round Tenon saw that could be pressed into service as a dovetail saw would probably be 12" with, ooo, 13ppi, x-cut? But that's just another opinion. :D 10" is really a minimum for any genuine tenon work I think.

sxlalan":18d1q8mb said:
Are there differences between the 2 other than TPI?
There should be. The amount of blade under the back is usually greater on a Tenon saw, the plate (blade) thicker than on a DT and the kerf wider too. The handle angle should differ too, but I'd be surprised if it does on most modern saws. That is, when you hold the handle of a tenon saw in your fist (as if you were about to lift a pint :wink: ) the saw should be almost horizontal. On a DT saw, the blade should angle up at 45°, give or take.

Cheers, Alf
 

sxlalan

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Hi Alf

Thanks for all the info, it all makes sense in a strange sort of way :?.

Does this mean that you don't rate these saws?

Alf":ogcy46u8 said:
Cheers

Alan
 

Alf

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sxlalan":tvm0qq2m said:
Does this mean that you don't rate these saws?
Well, bearing in mind I've only ever tried one of their Gents saws, not greatly, no. But then I don't rate any modern saws for one reason or another, so don't let that put you off. It's a bit like buying a Stanley plane, to my mind. You can buy a new one, and with a deal of tuning and doing something about the handles, you can get a workable tool that won't give you blisters. But, why pay all that when you can get an older one that'll already have a nice handle and only need the tuning bit done? And all for less money, especially if you enjoy the hunt. But then I like old tools; you may have noticed. :wink: :lol:

Cheers, Alf
 
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Hi Alan


I more-or-less agree with Alf, except the old tool bit of course :)

Over the past few years I have owned and tried 5 DT saws and 3 tenon saws :oops:

The ones I settled on are:

A 15 points per inch DT 9" Saw with the teeth set at .003" per side in a rip pattern for a .026" kerf which guides the blade for narrow, straight cutting. Length, including handle, is 14".

For tenons, a 12" saw with .032" thick blade. The teeth are set at .004" per side and are sharpened for crosscut - 13 points.

I do not really see any cross-over between these saws as the diminutive size and weight of the DT saw is great for fine and accurate cuts but the rip teeth are not sutiable for tenons + the saw is really too light for them
 
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sxlalan":3hk3zxol said:
Thanks Tony

Do you mind saying which make you decided on?

Cheers

Alan
My DT of choice is a LN DT saw.
The tenon saw is really a draw between a Pax and one made by Footprint which was quite cheap (£26) and is really very good - I tend to use whichever of them is closest to me
 

Alf

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Tony":1cfsvw8a said:
...which was quite cheap (£26)...
Big spender. I think the most I've ever spent on a tenon saw was about £3... Although, to be fair, that's not strictly true. Gotta add in the time spent cleaning it up, the cost of the file, making the saw vice, the wide range of saw sets from which to choose, the accumulation of knowledge, the practicing, the... Well, erm, let's just say £26 is probably cheap. :lol: The Old Man's got a new Footprint hand saw skulling about somewhere; not too bad a piece of kit - but for the handle.

Cheers, Alf
 

MikeW

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Alf":3p2kbfdg said:
...The Old Man's got a new Footprint hand saw skulling about somewhere; not too bad a piece of kit - but for the handle.
Cheers, Alf
But we all know that's remedied with a file if one cares to.
 

Alf

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MikeW":1grnbbf9 said:
Alf":1grnbbf9 said:
...The Old Man's got a new Footprint hand saw skulling about somewhere; not too bad a piece of kit - but for the handle.
Cheers, Alf
But we all know that's remedied with a file if one cares to.
Now if you can persuade my esteemed pater to take time to file a saw handle to make it comfy you must charm birds from the trees in your spare time, Mike. :lol:

Cheers, Alf
 

MikeW

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Alf":3nq76h3v said:
MikeW":3nq76h3v said:
Alf":3nq76h3v said:
...The Old Man's got a new Footprint hand saw skulling about somewhere; not too bad a piece of kit - but for the handle.
Cheers, Alf
But we all know that's remedied with a file if one cares to.
Now if you can persuade my esteemed pater to take time to file a saw handle to make it comfy you must charm birds from the trees in your spare time, Mike. :lol:
Cheers, Alf
Wouldn't even attempt it. Beauty / comfort / care, is in the eye of the beholder.

Mike
(who must muster enough energy to work while it is still today)
 

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