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Dovetail saw: Stumpy vs. long?

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Forum topic by 12strings posted 09-19-2013 09:27 PM 1059 views 0 times favorited 2 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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12strings

434 posts in 1849 days


09-19-2013 09:27 PM

Topic tags/keywords: dovetail saw saw

It seems in the old days, there were lots of saws in this general style: Short, deeper cut:

However, nearly all modern dovetail saws follow the longer, more shallow style, like this one (and yes, I realize many older saws also follow this design…but very few of the high-end saw makers make this style anymore…Pax is the only one I can think of:

So my question is, what makes one better than another in a certain situation, or to a particular woodworker? It seems that unless you are dovetailing 2.5-3 inch material, then the stumpy saws depth doesn’t really come into play.

I assume the answer is personal preference, but what exactly drives that preference?

-- I'm strictly hand-tool only...unless the power tool is faster and easier!


2 replies so far

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JustJoe

1554 posts in 1503 days


#1 posted 09-19-2013 10:08 PM

Were those big fatties up top used for dovetails, or for sawing tenon cheeks? I’ve got an OVB backsaw that is a couple inches deeper than any other backsaw I’ve ever held and I always figured that’s what it was for.

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12strings

434 posts in 1849 days


#2 posted 09-20-2013 01:10 AM

It’s definitely not a traditional tenon saw, those were much bigger, these generally only have a blade 6-8 in. long. I just don’t really know what the advantage is to that design. I’m hoping there are some saw experts to help me out.

-- I'm strictly hand-tool only...unless the power tool is faster and easier!

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