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Forum topic by CB_Cohick posted 02-14-2016 02:52 AM 1051 views 0 times favorited 29 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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CB_Cohick

460 posts in 711 days


02-14-2016 02:52 AM

Topic tags/keywords: sharpening crosscut saw

I picked up a nondescript Warrented Superior 8 ppi crosscut saw while rust hunting today. If nothing else, it is good practice for sharpening. The points are getting plenty “sticky” sharp, the way a sharp saw feels, you know what I mean. Swapping out my worn file for a fresh one was a big help. The biggest problem I see with what I am doing is maintaining even tooth height, as you can see in my photo. Anybody have a handy tip or three?

Thanks in advance.

-- Chris - Would work, but I'm too busy reading about woodwork.


29 replies so far

View sawdustdad's profile

sawdustdad

131 posts in 345 days


#1 posted 02-14-2016 04:19 AM

Joint the teeth with a flat file so that a bright spot appears on the tip of every single tooth. Then, file to sharpen the teeth until that flat spot JUST disappears on each tooth. the will all be the same height.

-- Murphy's Carpentry Corollary #3: Any board cut to length has a 50% probability of being too short.

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CB_Cohick

460 posts in 711 days


#2 posted 02-14-2016 04:43 AM



Joint the teeth with a flat file so that a bright spot appears on the tip of every single tooth. Then, file to sharpen the teeth until that flat spot JUST disappears on each tooth. the will all be the same height.

- sawdustdad


That is a great tip, and that was actually the first thing I did. What I noticed about my pattern is that it seems to be an every other point problem. Since I am trying to file crosscut, my grip\stance is changing every other tooth also. I wonder if it would be advantageous to file every other tooth toe to heel, then flip the saw in my vice and hit the other teeth, but maintain my same grip\stance. Another thing I have noticed as I progressed from the original photo is that if I don’t bear down as much on my file, and let the tool do the work, then my consistency improved greatly.

-- Chris - Would work, but I'm too busy reading about woodwork.

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BurlyBob

3652 posts in 1726 days


#3 posted 02-14-2016 04:54 AM

My hat’s off to you . I haven’t gotten the nerve yet to try sharpening saws.

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CB_Cohick

460 posts in 711 days


#4 posted 02-14-2016 05:00 AM

Bob, I forget which LJ it was that gave me some initial encouragement, but basically the advice was just to go for it and that in their experience they had never made a dull saw worse for trying. It is something I see myself getting better at.

-- Chris - Would work, but I'm too busy reading about woodwork.

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BurlyBob

3652 posts in 1726 days


#5 posted 02-14-2016 05:05 AM

Chris, That is a great piece of advice. Sounds like a piece of advice an old mentor of mine would have given me.
I was building a small garden shed and he saw me trying to get a very precise measurement cut exactly. He told me, ” You ain’t building a piano.”

View summerfi's profile

summerfi

3315 posts in 1147 days


#6 posted 02-14-2016 05:09 AM

Chris, you’re a brave man starting out with a crosscut. Rip saws are easier to file by a factor of 10 and are what most people start with. I’m assuming you’ve already watched Andy’s video. If not, it’s a must. I can tell from your picture that one of the problems you’re having is filing more rake on one side of the saw than the other. After shaping the teeth, it is critical to maintain that same rake angle on both sides. Proper lighting is valuable for this. When I file a crosscut saw, I usually do it at night, in the dark, with only my bench light shining on the teeth. I can immediately tell from the reflection if I’m keeping the correct rake angle.

-- Bob, Missoula, MT -- Rocky Mountain Saw Works http://www.rmsaws.com/p/about-us.html

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James Wright

228 posts in 324 days


#7 posted 02-14-2016 01:30 PM

I cut a curf in a small block of wood at the angle I want to file and place the block over the saw so that I have a constant reference to the angle I am filling. I file every other to keep the angle the same. then after I flip the block over and do the other set.

-- James Wright, Rockford IL, https://www.youtube.com/c/WoodWright

View Dan Morgan's profile

Dan Morgan

48 posts in 588 days


#8 posted 02-14-2016 01:37 PM

James hit on something important here. The best way to file a saw is all one cut then switch to the opposite. Makes everything more consistent and accurate. Even a fancy powered saw Finley like the Foley-Belsaw makes you flip the saw.

-- Maintenance Man - I do precision guesswork based on unreliable data from people of questionable knowledge...

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JayT

4772 posts in 1671 days


#9 posted 02-14-2016 01:54 PM

I wonder if it would be advantageous to file every other tooth toe to heel, then flip the saw in my vice and hit the other teeth, but maintain my same gripstance.

- CB_Cohick

That will help a lot. Switching every tooth really hurts consistency.

Is the saw vise working for you or did you have to build one?

-- "Good judgement is the result of experience. A lot of experience is the result of poor judgement."

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CB_Cohick

460 posts in 711 days


#10 posted 02-14-2016 02:11 PM

Jay, that vise is working very well for me. Thanks again!

-- Chris - Would work, but I'm too busy reading about woodwork.

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CB_Cohick

460 posts in 711 days


#11 posted 02-14-2016 04:30 PM

I have taken your thoughts into consideration and see some improvement. I still need to work on some of the points where I marked the tops of the teeth, but I feel like my condistency is better. I am paying more attention to rake, and working one side at a time seems to help quite a bit. Thanks, everyone.

-- Chris - Would work, but I'm too busy reading about woodwork.

View duckmilk's profile

duckmilk

1660 posts in 785 days


#12 posted 02-14-2016 06:30 PM

Looking good Chris, you’ll get the hang of it. Here are a couple of links to Andy’s video and also his saw blog. These will give you hours of entertainment.

http://lumberjocks.com/Brit/blog/36332

http://lumberjocks.com/Brit/blog/series/4708

-- "Duck and Bob would be out doin some farming with funny hats on." chrisstef

View Don W's profile

Don W

17958 posts in 2028 days


#13 posted 02-14-2016 11:30 PM

You definitely want to sharpen one side at a time.

You might be younger than me, but I find these invaluable.

-- Master hand plane hoarder. - http://timetestedtools.net

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hotbyte

841 posts in 2436 days


#14 posted 02-15-2016 12:10 AM

I’d look like I was boarding the mother ship with those on :-) I bet they do help wonders, though!

Interesting thread…I’ve not ventured into saw sharpening, yet.


You definitely want to sharpen one side at a time.

You might be younger than me, but I find these invaluable.

- Don W


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CB_Cohick

460 posts in 711 days


#15 posted 02-15-2016 12:34 AM



You definitely want to sharpen one side at a time.

You might be younger than me, but I find these invaluable.

- Don W

Don, those look interesting. Where would I go to look at them? Got a link, brandname?

-- Chris - Would work, but I'm too busy reading about woodwork.

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