Tag Archives: saw tote

Happy New Year – New Saw Tote Part 4

happy-new-yearHappy New Year everybody!

Gramercy Tools Saw Handle Makers Rasp

Gramercy Tools Saw Handle Maker’s Rasp

The next step in making the new saw tote is to break out the rasps.  I did most of the shaping work with my Gramercy Tools Saw Handle Maker’s Rasp.  I picked up this rasp at Woodworking In America back in October.  Most of the shaping that has to be done is on the grip, although most of the edges get rounded over as well.

2013-12-29 16.51.34

 

Next comes the real test . . . how the tote feels in the hand.  For my hands, this tote pattern – from Aldren Watson’s book Hand Tools: Their Ways and Workings – is nearly perfect.

2013-12-29 16.51.46Once the grip is comfortable, it’s time to start sanding.  I used 220 grit sandpaper to remove the final rasp marks and get a nice silky smooth finish.

2013-12-30 21.57.53Once all the sanding is done, I applied a couple of coats of boiled linseed oil and finished it off with a little furniture wax.  Here is a photo of the finished tote installed on saw.

2014-01-01 17.39.34And here is a photo of the new tote next to the old one for comparison.

2014-01-01 18.19.15Until next time . . .

 

 

 

 

 

New Saw Tote Part 3. . . Yep, I’m in love

Kerf marked in on the new saw tote

Kerf marked in on the new saw tote

The night before last, I marked out the kerf for the sawplate in the new tote.  Yesterday after work, I used my new Veritas Rip Tenon Saw to saw out the kerf.  As a side note, I really am in love with these saws!

Sawing out the kerf

Sawing out the kerf

Kerfed saw tote

Kerfed saw tote

After the kerf was cut, I drilled the holes and counterbored the recesses for the for the saw nuts.  I then drove the male half of the saw nuts into the holes to form the square portions of the holes (see the photo below).

2013-12-28 19.26.58

You may notice a gray streak in the handle from one of the screw holes to the front of the tote.   When I was driving in the saw nuts, the tote cracked along a weak section of the grain.

Cracked tote

Cracked tote

This morning, I started the repairs on the tote.  First, I sawed a kerf along the crack.2013-12-28 10.38.21Next, I mixed up some epoxy with sawdust from the shaping of the tote and filled in the kerf with this mixture to act as a filler.

Crack filled

Crack filled

After the filler had set up, I removed the excess with a sharp chisel and a scraper.  Below is a photo of the repaired tote.

Repaired saw tote

Repaired saw tote

The next step in making the tote is to do the final shaping of the curved edges.  The most critical are to shape is around the grip so that the saw is comfortable to hold and use.  The front and bottom edges of the tote will be shaped as well, but that is more for looks than anything.   My next post in the series will cover the shaping (and hopefully the finishing) of the tote.

Until then. . .

Shop projects – French marking gauge, saw bench and horse, and saw tote

ProjectsJust because I haven’t been posting too much lately doesn’t mean that I haven’t had any shop time.  Over the past month, I have had an opportunity to knock out 3 fairly quick shop projects.  First was the french style marking gauge at the front of the photo above.  I stripped out the thumb screw on a cheap gauge that I had and needed a new gauge for marking the width of pieces.  I happened to have a nice small piece of walnut kicking around the shop, so I decide to make my own gauge.

2013-12-09 21.43.13 2013-12-09 21.42.56 2013-12-09 21.43.01 2013-12-09 21.42.53The marking gauge was used to finish the second project.  A second sawbench and saw horse (they are holding the marking gauge and saw).  I now have two sets, which is really useful because I can saw long boards and planks with all four stands supporting the lumber and I don’t have to worry about half the board falling on the floor and tearing out the wood along the cut.  The sawbenches and saw horses I use were built using Chris Schwarz’s 2008 design, which can be found here.  There has been some ruckus in the woodworking corner of the internet about how saw benches with vertical legs are better than ones with splayed legs.  I don’t have a dog in that fight, but I have to say that in over 2 years, I’ve never had a problem with the splayed leg design.  The saw bench includes a “V” shaped ripping notch that avoids the legs of the bench.

2013-12-09 21.20.19

The final project, which I finished up tonight, is a new saw tote for one of my old rip saws.  This one is made of cherry.  A well designed tote is a joy to work with; add to that the fact that they are fun and fairly easy to make.  I don’t know why there are still so many saws with uncomfortable totes.  This project was my first chance to really try out my new Gramercy Tools Hand Cut Saw Handle Maker’s Rasp from Tools for Working Wood.  I picked up this rasp from the Tools for Working Wood booth at Woodworking in America in October.  I wish I had purchased one sooner.  It is fantastic for shaping the compound curves on the grip of a tote.  I only wish that Gramercy would make a finer grain version (which would leave a smoother surface.

While I don’t anticipate making any more sawbenches or saw horses, I will be make a couple more gauges and a few more saw totes.  I’ll be sure to get some photos and write some posts about the processes I use to make these tools.

Until next time . . .

Saw Restoration

Saw after restoration.

Saw after restoration.

Around Thanksgiving, my Father-in-Law, Dave, mentioned that his handsaws needed to be sharpened.  I told him that I would be happy to sharpen them, so we went out to his workshop to check them out.  One of the saws had a really bad kink in the blade and wasn’t in any condition to be salvaged without a lot of work.  The other was fairly rusted and had a minor kink near the end of the blade, but it wasn’t too bad.

I wish I had taken a picture of this saw before I started working on it.  It was a Craftsman; I think it was probably made in the 1970s or 1980s.  In addition to the kink in the blade, the tote (the proper name for a saw’s handle) was very poorly designed.  It was made of 1″ plywood, and all its proportions were much to large to be usable.  I asked Dave if he wanted me to make a new tote for the saw in addition to sharpening it.  He responded,  “Whatever you want to do.”  That was music to my ears.

I brought this saw home and over the past week and a half, I have been working on restoring it.  First I picked up a nice cherry board from my friend Kurt and started making a new tote.  On Christmas Day, I took the mostly completed tote to see how it fit Dave’s hand.  After finishing the tote, I gave the saw plate a bath in Evapo-rust, a great (and very environmentally friendly) rust remover.

I had talked to Dave on Christmas Eve about what type of wood he expected to cut and what clean-up he usually did after using the saw.  It turns out that the saw wasn’t particularly suited to his needs, so I decided to rework the saw’s cutting geometry.  The first step in this process was to file away all the existing teeth of the saw.  Next, I had to file in new teeth.  Once the new teeth were formed, I sharpened the cutting angles on the teeth.  It took several passes with a file to get the saw good and sharp.

Once the blade was sharp, I cut a groove in the tote for the saw-blade and drilled holes for the saw-nuts that hold the handle to the saw plate.  Next, I put several coats of Watco Danish Oil on the tote; and when it was dry, I put the saw together.

Here is a photo showing both the original tote and the new one.

Saw tote comparison

Saw tote comparison

What do you think of the restoration?  I would love to hear your thoughts?  Also, please let me know if you would like more or less details in future posts.