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best saw for dovetails

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Forum topic by buckbuster31 posted 04-04-2017 03:15 PM 980 views 0 times favorited 20 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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buckbuster31

203 posts in 355 days


04-04-2017 03:15 PM

I just ordered a new back saw, but what about coping saw? Any suggestions?


20 replies so far

View nkawtg's profile

nkawtg

263 posts in 1090 days


#1 posted 04-04-2017 03:22 PM

Rather than a coping saw, how about a Fret Saw?

View Ron Aylor's profile

Ron Aylor

1790 posts in 487 days


#2 posted 04-04-2017 03:36 PM


I just ordered a new back saw, but what about coping saw? Any suggestions?

- buckbuster31

May I assume you are going to use the coping saw for cleaning out waste? If so, then yes a coping saw is great for this task … no so for cutting the sides of the tails and pins as it is just too narrow. As nkawtg suggests a fret saw is a good choice, too (because of the extremely narrow blade). I use a modified gent saw and a fret saw for just about all of my dovetail work.
 

 

-- Ron in Lilburn, Georgia.  Knowing how to use a tool is more important than the tool in and of itself.

View jdmaher's profile

jdmaher

417 posts in 2419 days


#3 posted 04-04-2017 04:46 PM

I’m just about ready to pull the trigger on a Knew Concepts Coping Saw. I’ve been using a no-name for many years, and I can no longer tension it enough.

I may not NEED the Knew Concepts, but I’m worth it! Right?

-- Jim Maher, Illinois

View Ron Aylor's profile

Ron Aylor

1790 posts in 487 days


#4 posted 04-04-2017 05:01 PM

I’m just about ready to pull the trigger on a “Knew Concepts Coping Saw” ...

- jdmaher

Wow, Jim … $150.00 for a coping saw … just think of the lumber you could buy …

-- Ron in Lilburn, Georgia.  Knowing how to use a tool is more important than the tool in and of itself.

View Smitty_Cabinetshop's profile

Smitty_Cabinetshop

14857 posts in 2457 days


#5 posted 04-04-2017 05:12 PM

Buck, I use a coping saw to clean out waste. Started with a Stanley FatMax; that did fine until the handle came off. To shorten the story, I have four or five coping saws now, and use (what I think is) a Disston #10B model most often. Why so many? Because they are cheap in thrift stores, flea mkts, etc.

The Disston is really good, the others include a Belknap / Bluegrass (midwest hardware brand) and I think a Vermont American.

Truth be told, the blade has more to do with performance than the saw. Finding the right feel for tooth count and bite is more of why I’m still picking up the stragglers I find; the used saws are cheaper each than a pack of blades at the hardware store.

I’ve never wanted a fret saw because there’s never been an issue getting the coping saw into the kerf of my backsaw cuts, AND I’ve read many times how easy it is (relative to coping saws) to break those blades.

Hope this helps.

-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. -- OldTools Archive --

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JADobson

922 posts in 1950 days


#6 posted 04-04-2017 05:53 PM

I use the Gramercy turning saw (http://www.leevalley.com/en/wood/page.aspx?p=71362&cat=1,42884,71437) to cut out the waste in my dovetails. Works really well (more like a coping saw then a fret saw) and can be used for many other things. I just got the kit and built my own but it is a pleasure to use.

-- No craft is very far from the line beyond which is magic. -- Lord Dunsany

View HokieKen's profile

HokieKen

4515 posts in 978 days


#7 posted 04-04-2017 06:02 PM

I use the Robert Larson coping saw. It’s not a Knew Concepts but I have no complaints, especially for the $. I also have a Kobalt coping saw from Lowes that I keep a coarser blade on for when I need it but that one rarely comes off the rack.

-- Kenny, SW VA, Go Hokies!!!

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boatz

92 posts in 1490 days


#8 posted 04-04-2017 06:11 PM

I have the Knew Concepts fret saw. Highland Woodworking recommended the fret saw instead of the coping saw to clear waste from dovetails

-- You can't always get what you want. But if you try sometimes you just might find, you'll get what you need

View buckbuster31's profile

buckbuster31

203 posts in 355 days


#9 posted 04-04-2017 06:21 PM

looks like I need to buy a fret saw then!

View nkawtg's profile

nkawtg

263 posts in 1090 days


#10 posted 04-04-2017 06:27 PM

Anyone use spiral blades in their coping saw?

View Rrrandy's profile

Rrrandy

212 posts in 318 days


#11 posted 04-04-2017 06:29 PM

If you own a scrollsaw you already own the best saw for cutting out waste…

-- Y'all need to locate a sense of humor. Borrow one if you can't find yours...

View Ron Aylor's profile

Ron Aylor

1790 posts in 487 days


#12 posted 04-04-2017 06:41 PM



Anyone use spiral blades in their coping saw?

- nkawtg

I use spiral blades … but not in the coping saw … I use them with this thing …
 

-- Ron in Lilburn, Georgia.  Knowing how to use a tool is more important than the tool in and of itself.

View BigMig's profile

BigMig

418 posts in 2452 days


#13 posted 04-04-2017 07:01 PM

I use a thin plate dovetail saw that’s no longer offered by Lie Nielsen and I’m finding the big box blades a bit thick, so it scores both sides of the dovetail saw’s cut. So I have to begin a kerf in the middle of the waste and avoid the DTsaw walls.
Thinner coping sawblades would be great…

-- Mike from Lansdowne, PA

View TheFridge's profile

TheFridge

8333 posts in 1325 days


#14 posted 04-04-2017 07:11 PM

The KC fret saw isn’t for everyone but it is a dream to use. They can break easier but you have to put it in a pretty good bind.

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

View jdmaher's profile

jdmaher

417 posts in 2419 days


#15 posted 04-04-2017 08:05 PM


Wow, Jim … $150.00 for a coping saw … just think of the lumber you could buy …

- Ron Aylor

Doggone it, Ron, I was hoping someone would tell me I’m NOT being extravagant. Now you got me thinking about some wood I need . . .

-- Jim Maher, Illinois

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