Best Hand Saws for Ripping Wood?

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Forum topic by NeanderthalStPaul posted 01-10-2009 05:32 AM 9333 views 0 times favorited 2 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View NeanderthalStPaul's profile


2 posts in 3622 days

01-10-2009 05:32 AM

Topic tags/keywords: hand tools saws frame saw dozuki ryoba bandsaw

The Best Things has ECE frame saws for sale, which seem like a good choice.

I’m interested in a saw for ripping hardwood boards, typically for smaller projects such as boxes. Am I better off with a frame saw, a dedicated ripping hand saw (European/American), or a Japanese ryoba? I want to use hand tools instead of a bandsaw for resawing wood and I’m interested in the experience of other woodworkers. Yes, I’d love the ease of a Powermatic or Laguna bandsaw, but I don’t have the $$$ or the motivation at this point. I want to use more traditional methods to get the best results possible without electricity. I realize there is a degree of personal preference in the aforementioned tools. Anyone used all of them? I like Japanese Dozuki saws, but the kerf and length of cuts are the major elements and they aren’t dedicated ripping tools (I once destroyed the teeth of a Dozuki on Granadillo). I’ve never mastered Euro/US carpenter saws, but I know it is practice and not the tools. Frame saws are interesting in theory, but I have never use done. Any opinions are welcome, even if you think I am crazy and scream “Buy the Powermatic!”


-- Neanderthal

2 replies so far

View Eric's profile


875 posts in 3982 days

#1 posted 01-10-2009 06:25 AM

I only have a ryoba at this point, but plan on building a frame/bow saw. I think that may be the way to go for you. Shoot me a message if you want more info – I have links somewhere, if not actual plans.

-- Eric at

View JuniorJoiner's profile


488 posts in 3638 days

#2 posted 01-10-2009 07:31 AM

my suggestion would be to just buy the blade and make your own frame saw. the blade dosen’t need to be anything special if you have a sharpening service in your town.but you would want to have 5 to 8 tpi with a slight to medium set. scrap an old hacksaw for the blade tilt adjustable, some twine and a wedge.
the hardest part is making the wooden handle comfortable and both sides of the saw near the same weight for good balance.
I am strongly recommending you make the saw yourself, so you are not out too much money after you have to resaw a few thick boards and you decide to spring for a bandsaw.

ps. i have used all saws mentioned, and the western pattern ripsaw i like best. there is no tilting the blade for long rips as with the frame saw. i have not had success ripping with a ryoba, i put it down and used the western rip instead.

-- Junior -Quality is never an accident-it is the reward for the effort involved.

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