How do you hold your favorite saws when cutting?

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Forum topic by TheFridge posted 09-24-2016 01:51 PM 926 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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9608 posts in 1512 days

09-24-2016 01:51 PM

Topic tags/keywords: resource question handsaw backsaw holding your saw joining

Do you hold it differently when trying to make a fine cut as opposed to a fast git’r done cut?

Just wondering.

And while we’re at it. What’s you’re favorite saw?

Gettin down on it

Fine cuts

Favorite saw (Summerfield special)

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

6 replies so far

View Aj2's profile


1438 posts in 1824 days

#1 posted 09-24-2016 02:36 PM

That’s exactly what I do.
Sometimes I point two fingers out to get my saw started straight.
My favorite saw is from Mike Wenzloff 77 small tenon.
A really fine joinery saw and joy to use.


-- Aj

View Hammerthumb's profile


2853 posts in 2001 days

#2 posted 09-24-2016 03:10 PM

You should hold it close to your heart, and then give it a kiss before starting. Bob sure does make a nice saw!

-- Paul, Las Vegas

View rwe2156's profile


2965 posts in 1507 days

#3 posted 09-24-2016 03:24 PM

Extended index finger 90% of the time.

But really anyway you train yourself to is ok as long as your consistent & don’t have a death grip on the handle.

I don’t have a great collection of saws just the 3 set joinery saws by Veritas and a few anitque panel saws.
I’m perfectly happy with them but I’m looking strongly at the LN tapered DT saw.

-- Everything is a prototype thats why its one of a kind!!

View TheFridge's profile


9608 posts in 1512 days

#4 posted 09-24-2016 03:28 PM

Show them puppies off!

I do more than kiss it hammer…

The LN is a workhorse. It can do fast or fine. Didn’t really want the tapered but it was all had in stock. I must say, the theory may not work well for all but it works great for me and how I naturally cut.

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

View Bill White's profile (online now)

Bill White

4948 posts in 3986 days

#5 posted 09-24-2016 06:51 PM

Just like your first pic. Extended “pointer” finger.
W. Butcher 12 ”, and 8” Bay State from Aiden 1211. Both sharpened rip.
Then there is a long Bay State 7 tpi CC, and a utility Buck Bros. that is about 30+ years old.
I’m not goin’ into the small stuff. Too much to list.


View JAAune's profile


1802 posts in 2343 days

#6 posted 09-24-2016 07:59 PM

The first thing I focus on isn’t the actual grip but am very careful to align my arm and shoulder with the saw. I’ll take practice strokes and if the saw is wiggling side-to-side as it goes back and forth I move my feet until it stops. To look for wiggle, it’s easiest to watch the reflection of the wood on the side of the saw blade. It should remain steady during the entire stroke.

Anyone that’s ever been with a coached target shooting group will understand the principle. You don’t force your arms to go in the right direction. If the entire body is positioned correctly, the rifle (or saw in the case of a woodworker) will always point in the same direction. It’s the same with a golf swing too.

Once I’m happy with the strokes, I will rotate the saw in my grip until it’s cutting on the same angle as my layout line. As far as finger placement goes, I don’t remember what I do. Whatever feels comfortable at the time.

I don’t have a favorite. There’s a Japanese dozuki for fine work and a matching pair of Lie Nielsen backsaws for ripping and crosscutting. The Lie Nielsen crosscutting saw gets used the most. Typically, that’s used for cutting pre-finished trim to size on the field. Cordless and zero splintering.

-- See my work at and

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