A Few Basic Hand Saws

For the most part, when it comes to sawing, I use mainly my Table Saw, Miter Saw, & Band Saw.

However, sometimes because of safety concerns or because it will be faster, I will use a Hand Saw.

The photo below, shows a couple of hand saws, that I use.

The hand saw on the left is my Stanley Fat Max hand saw. Its general parameters are as follows:

  1. 15″ length
  2. 9 PPI (points per inch) or 8 TPI (teeth per inch), PPI = TPI + 1
  3. Cuts on the push & pull strokes
  4. Crosscut type teeth

This Stanley Fat Max hand saw, has been a pleasure to use. This saw cuts fast, as advertised.

I use this Fat Max hand saw, mainly for cutting wood to rough length.
The saw in the middle, is my back saw, with the following parameters:

  1. 14″ length
  2. 10 TPI
  3. Rip-cut type teeth

I bought this Back Saw and a plastic miter box, for $2 at a flea market up in north Georgia, last year. Its got some rust on the blade, need to do some refurbishing work on the blade. However, I have been surprised at how well, this saw cuts, even with the rust shown on it. It’s a keeper.

I mainly use this Back Saw, in situations where I need to cut a notch in a piece of wood, where its not practical and / or safe to use a power tool.

The hand saw on the right is my Flush Cut Saw, with the following parameters:

  1. 7″ length
  2. 24 TPI
  3. Crosscut type teeth
  4. Thin flexible blade, cuts on pull stroke only

I use this hand saw mainly for cutting wood plugs flush with wood surface, their installed in. Also use when I have a small piece of wood that I need to cut to a rough length.

The above Sketch shows some of the details of a hand saw with crosscut teeth, as follows:

  1. The drawing at the top of the Sketch, shows a side view of crosscut type teeth. If you look at a hand saw blade from the side, if every other tooth is strictly two dimensional (length & width only) and if the remaining ever other teeth are three dimensional (length, width, & depth), then the teeth are crosscut type teeth.
  2. The shaded areas where shown on teeth, represent the teeth being sharpened at a non 90 degree angle relative to the side of the saw blade. Typically the teeth are sharpened at between 20 and 25 degrees, relative to the face of the saw blade.
  3. The drawing at the bottom of the Sketch, shows 60 degrees (60 = 48 + 12) as the total angle between teeth. The total angle between teeth is always kept at 60 degrees total, to the best of my knowledge.
  4. The 12 degrees shown is the rake angle, the tooth edge up against the rake angle, is the cutting tooth edge. It’s the side of the tooth that first makes contact with the wood.
  5. The rake angle shown doesn’t have to be 12 degrees. Twelve degrees is considered an aggressive cutting angle, but a hard to start cutting angle, unless your an experienced user of hand saws. Fifteen degrees is a less aggressive cutting angle, but an easier to start cutting angle.
  6. In any event, the sum of the rake angle plus other angle shown, need to total 60 degrees. Therefore, for the 15 degree rake angle, the other angle should be 45 degrees. In order for the total angle to total 60 degrees (60 = 45 + 15).

The above Sketch, shows some of the particulars of a hand saw with rip-cut type teeth, as follows:

  1. The drawing at the top of the Sketch, shows a side view of rip-cut type teeth. If you look at a hand saw blade from the side, if every tooth is strictly two dimensional (length & width only), then the teeth are rip-cut type teeth.
  2. The saw teeth are sharpened at a 90 degree angle, relative to the side of the saw blade.
  3. The two drawings at the bottom of the Sketch, show 60 degrees as the angle for each tooth. The total angle between teeth is always kept at 60 degrees, to the best of my knowledge.
  4. For the drawing at the bottom left, the rake angle is zero degrees. The left side of the tooth (rake angle = zero degrees), is the cutting tooth edge. It’s the side of the tooth, that first makes contact with the wood.
  5. The rake angle shown, doesn’t have to be zero degrees, as shown in the bottom left drawing. Zero degrees is considered an aggressive cutting angle, but harder to start for sawing, unless your an experienced user of hand saws. An 8 degrees rake angle, as shown in the bottom right drawing, is a less aggressive cutting angle, but easier to saw with.
  6. In any event, the sum of the rake angle plus other angle shown, needs to total 60 degrees. Therefore, for the 8 degree rake angle, the other angle is shown to be 52 degrees. In order for the total tooth angle to total 60 degrees (60 = 52 + 8).

Hope you enjoyed the Post, & what are some of your favorite hand saws?

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Until Next Time, Take Care
AL

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