Hand Tools Archive

Using the Knew Concepts (and other) fretsaws
Response To:
Re: Knew Concepts saw ()

Derek Cohen (in Perth, Australia)
When I first looked at an improved fretsaw, my thoughts were fixed on as stiff and rigid a frame as possible. Perhaps it was that the fretsaws I used up until then were on the flexible side, however, looking back, I recognise that poor technique came into this as well.

The KC fretsaw was a revelation in stiffness and lightness combined, but I recognise now that it's very qualities can help in disguising flawed sawing technique, and that with good technique, it is an even better saw ... and very likely, lesser fretsaws are better than they seem.

The technical issue is a terribly simple one, yet the results for me have been profound. What is it? Simply, let the saw do the cutting. Never force a cut. This is the same technique one uses with a dovetail saw (or a tenon saw).

You can judge the tension on the saw blade by the bend in the blade. Aim to bend the blade as little as possible. I used to try and actively saw the line, and this would cause the blade to wander (like forcing a board through a bandsaw). Now I lighten the handle and let the blade caress the wood. It saws just as fast - but with full control.

This enables one to saw to a mm of the baseline, and that means minimal paring to the line.

Regards from Perth


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