Monday, September 16, 2013

Saw making again?

Now the table is finished, I want to spend some time on smaller projects. I've made two saws in the past (Tenon saw), and that was fun. Not easy, but fun. I still have some parts left over, several folded brass backs and a bit of spring steel plate. One of the backs is very short and would be perfect for making a dovetail saw. The steel plate I have is a bit thick for a dovetail saw, so I ordered some 0.45mm plate on ebay in Germany.

I have been looking around for some nice patterns. There is plenty available on the net, but I have a very mundane taste. A lot of woodworkers like very ornate sawhandles, but for me they should be as simple as possible. When I first saw a picture of the Dalaway saw, I was intrigued, but not yet very enthousiastic. It is probably one of the oldest surviving dovetail saw, made in Birmingham in the 18th century. (From a book, woodworking tools in the 18th century).

Very nice little saw, but the handle does look a bit dismembered in this picture. I was contemplating several other designs, like the old Kenyon saws. But then I saw a picture of the saw made by George Wilson, the retired master instrument maker in the museum "Colonial Williamsburg" in America. Apart from the musical instruments, they were making all kinds of 18th century tools to be used in the museum. While George didn't think much of this design, I was smitten by its wonderfull shape, the little details and the kind of unorthodox low hang angle of the handle.

Some details. Canted sawplate, which means its is lower a the front. A tapered spine, quite a bit narrower in the front then at the handle end. 0.4 mm thin plate, so mine is still a little too thick. I don't know its size, it looks like the plate is 9" long.  My plate is 8", so it will look a bit different. Overall I am totally stoked to give it a try. It won't be a carbon copy, but I'll give it a honest try.

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