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Thread: Unusual saw

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    Carpenter & blacksmith Philip Davies's Avatar
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    Unusual saw

    Unusual saw-img_0390.jpg
    Here is a very unusual saw. I have never seen a Western saw like it. I assume the owner must have recut it. But it was not his favourite. From the same source cam a crosscut that had lost at least two inches' depth from re-sharpening.

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    matermark's Avatar
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    I think you may be referring to the little nibb protrusion? I remember seeing this subject before in one of the magazines, but I forgot what the answer was... may get many answers, from casting flash from manufacturing process, to groove starter, to anything under the sun, but wait a while to see what answers you get! The last answer I saw was you use it with a square to scribe a cut line without having to reach for a pencil!
    Last edited by matermark; 02-13-2017 at 12:03 AM.

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    mklotz mklotz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by matermark View Post
    I think you may be referring to the little nibb protrusion? I remember seeing this subject before in one of the magazines, but I forgot what the answer was... may get many answers, from casting flash from manufacturing process, to groove starter, to anything under the sun, but wait a while to see what answers you get! The last answer I saw was you use it with a square to scribe a cut line without having to reach for a pencil!
    His comment about never having seen a Western saw like it seems to indicate that he's talking about the fact that the saw cuts on the pull, rather than push, stroke as many Oriental saws do.
    ---
    Regards, Marv


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    matermark's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mklotz View Post
    His comment about never having seen a Western saw like it seems to indicate that he's talking about the fact that the saw cuts on the pull, rather than push, stroke as many Oriental saws do.
    Thanks! I didn't even look at the teeth direction until now. Good job!

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    Carpenter & blacksmith Philip Davies's Avatar
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    Spot on, Einstein!

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    Using our (new to me) picture search I found a couple of links that have similar nibs on the nose.
    1. Google Images

    This was the closest although not a pull saw.

    This was a rare find in the walls of a house in the Netherlands...dated c 17th/18th century.

    Are there any other markings on the saw it self? Perhaps a picture of the whole saw may prove better search results. ~PJ
    ‘‘Always do right. This will gratify some people and astonish the rest.’’
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    Carpenter & blacksmith Philip Davies's Avatar
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    Well, PJ, it's a really rather an ordinary saw, no maker's rivet, all quite rusty. The nib is not unusual on old saws. Its purpose was possibly to tie a guard in place when it was in the tool bag. The really remarkable thing, I should have stated more explicitly, is that it has been toothed to cut on the pull stroke. Either this was a mistake - extremely unlikely, or the owner recut it. This is quite an undertaking. Why would he do it? As an experiment? I have tried Japanese saws but i would not buy one. I cannot understand why a pre-war carpenter would do that. I was given two saws when I was a youth, both crosscuts, but since I needed a rip I recut the longer. It is a Disston Philadelphia. Wow! Was that hard! Now I have a lot more saws, because people find it easier to drive to the shop and buy a hardpoint. They say you cannot sharpen hard points, but you can if you grind off the blue teeth and recut. I did that to make a rip tenon, but now I have a nice brass-backed one.

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    mklotz mklotz's Avatar
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    I'm not a woodworker by any means but I subscribe to the idea that it's a lot easier to pull a rope than to push it. A saw blade handled at only one end isn't exactly a rope but the saying still obtains.

    I have several Japanese wood saws and, for me, it's much easier to cut a straight line with them. Neophyte woodworkers should at least give them a try. The Japanese, lacking wood in long lengths, are masters of intricate joinery done with pull saws and chisels. Incidentally, GIF animations of some of these marvelous joints can be seen here...

    Animated GIFs Illustrating the Art of Japanese Wood Joinery | Spoon & Tamago

    Pull sawing is just as useful in the metalworking arena. Several of my hacksaws have the blades mounted so as to cut on the pull stroke. All of my jeweler saws have the blades so mounted. I believe that jewelers normally mount their blades that way when cutting on a birdmouth bench pin.
    ---
    Regards, Marv


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    I am not at all knowledgeable about this, but the 6" long (or so) cutback (nib) on the top edge of the old saw illustrated in the initial posting of this thread is described in an article titled 'Typical Hand Saws' on the following website as having no practical purpose i.e. for aesthetic reasons only. Types of Handsaws | Norse Woodsmith

    I am a 'switch hitter' (metal working plus woodworking). In response to the comment by PD about pull saws, I recently purchased two Japanese pull saws for the latter hobby. A Japanese pull saw offers a few important advantages in my view over the typical western push saw we are all familiar with including the following:
    cutting on the pull stroke (allowing much finer control),
    - more aggressive tooth profile (therefore faster cut) ,
    - much thinner (therefore less cutting resistance),
    - more flexible blade (allowing easier access to the work in some cases),
    - optional tooth profiles (e.g. teeth set on one side only allowing flush cutting of dowels),
    - finer teeth/set in some cases (allowing more controlled cut gap enlargement), and
    - much harder teeth (typically Rc61 vs Rc38-42 for western saws - resulting in longer life & the ability to cut soft metals e.g. aluminum).

    I have two pull saws; both from Lee Valley ( Saws - Lee Valley Tools ) - Check them out online: e.g.1 Veritas flush cutting saw single edge 0.01" (0.25mm) thick x 20 tpi), e.g.2 Japanese Plywood Saw (0.04" (1mm) thick x 17 tpi x 240 mm long). Compare this to my Irwin - Fine Cut Carpenter Saw (0.043" (1.1mm) thick x 12 tpi x 15" (380mm) long which is a very good crosscut saw, but I find my Lee Valley Plywood Saw easier to use.

    Best Regards,
    Gary (kngtek)
    Calgary, AB Canada

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    PJs
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    Whelp I've learned a lot here. My little experience with setting and sharpening saws would lead me to the store I think if I ever got it into my head to grind one off and start over...a whole lot of work for sure! By the description of the second saw obtained from the same source I would bet that he took on that challenge on the saw in the picture with the reasons lost in the mind of the owner/user.

    I did understand the Pull virtues of Phillips saw but the little nib peaked my interests as I had never seen that. Interesting that the article Kngtek posted seems to indicate no use other than decorative. In the pre-war and older saws like I found I can somewhat understand the "Craftsmanship" "Scroll Work" angle to putting one on in the manufacture of it but the engineer in me tells me it surely had to have a purpose as Phillip indicated or other unknown carpentry technique to my novice skills and no training in that arena.

    As for the push/pull, I tend to lean toward the pull side but have a nice cross cut "Push saw" that gets with the program and has a really good finish. Also have a couple of Pull style for dovetails and Dozuki for more generalized fine work and have to say I like the pull style for fine work.


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