Here are a few pictures and notes on my sharpening process.
Many of you know a great deal more than I about sharpening sawblades but I thought I would document my process and see if anyone has any pointers for improvement.
Here is my set up.
I made my vise out of a couple of 2×8 yellow pine and beveled the top edge to make it narrow and allow me to get closer to the blade for filing. I checked for a slight bow in the wood so when the two boards are placed together the ends touch and there is a slight gap between the board in the middle. That allows me to clamp in a vise at the center and know that the outer ends will also grip the blade tight. I add the extra clamps at the ends when working on long blades because it isn’t tight enough at the ends and will vibrate.
What I like best about this set up is that I can clamp the entire blade and not have to move it along through a short vise. I have a bright light clamped above and shining on the work space. The light is very important to me and I also use a magnifying glass.
All the methods I use are found in the Saw Sharpening Treatise here
Rather than just using my normal angles for rake and fleam I checked the saw to see how it had been sharpened. I found it to be 11-degree rake and 20-degree fleam angles. The little block of hardwood attached to the end of the file helps to guide the rake angle and the adjustable square laying on the bench gives me a visual of the fleam angle.
This was one of my easier sharpening projects. The teeth were very even and mostly I just touched them up and filed the rust off. Just two strokes per tooth.
This saw also has a very slight arc (3/32”) in the cutting side of the plate. I think this is the way it was made originally.
I really enjoy this part of restoring a saw.
One thing I am still not sure about is fine tuning. I have one little back-saw I sharpened that wants to wonder off square as you cut. I don’t think it is user error because I can cut very straight and square with a different saw.
The other thing I am curious about is custom sharpening based on how a saw is used. What angles are best and why. Some saws even have teeth that change from toe to heal.
-- Being focused on a project is the best meditation, it allows you to live in the moment"