It must be hand saw season as two handsaws have occupied my time recently. I made a small unbacked handsaw for a luthier friend as a prop to replace his plastic handle version that ruins otherwise nice photographs. I don’t care if he uses it, but it must be in his photographs.
Simple version like my others I have made with square tapered octagonal curly maple handle; the nib on the end is for starting saw kerfs and is somewhat shaped like a violin scroll. The tooth guard is aspen.
I shape the curly maple to rough shape with spokeshaves and hand planes but there is usually a bunch of tear out, so I go over the surfaces with a toothing plane, then using a card scraper removed all of the toothing marks leaving a smooth surface. I then cut the kerf for the saw blade with a smaller saw for a tight fit. I drilled two holes for the rivets through the handle, then marking the position of the holes on the saw plate, I drilled two holes through the metal.
That took some time, I had to use a punch to get a deep enough hole for the small drill bit to catch and start cutting. I also drilled a hole for the nib/scroll, then used a jeweler’s saw and files to finish the shape of the pierced hole. The outside shape of the nib was filed with a triangular file. The saw is 13 tpi sharpened rip. I had to sharpen it three times to get rid of the factory sharpening into decent shape. Did have to set a few teeth, it was from an offset reversible dovetail saw, I sheared off the blade and cut it to length.
The handle was then soaked in water to raise the grain, after it dried, I scraped again and gave it a coat of Moses T’s Reviver [lean oil], after 24 hours a coat of Moses T’s Gunstocker’s Finish [fat oil], available here. The handle is riveted on with brass rivets.
The other saw is one I traded from a friend, I had a long piece of curly maple suitable for a walking stick and he just got this at the local swap meet. I am not sure of its use or whether it is a saw or an agricultural tool, but it sure looks oriental.
The blade is a uniform .057″ or 15 gauge in thickness, about 11 teeth per inch and all filed from one side, the other being a bevel. It has a gutter forged along its curved length and held in the handle with two pins and a metal ferrule. The wood is like ash, very light in weight and obviously hand shaped. Interesting tool.