Learn to Handsaw......

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froglips

New User
Jim Campbell
In a of hijack of JeromeB's thread on Neanderthal gathering, I'd like to start a brain storming thread on learning to handsaw.

In my mind, how does this sound:
1. Using this site, help those interested in finding, selecting a saw, files, vise and sawset. Help everyone get a baseline.

2. Have a gathering where we learn to sharpen one saw. From my education in Bill Anderson's great class, I think doing one rip saw would be more than enough to work on during an afternoon.

3. Another gathering called "learn to rip". That'd includes marking lines, holding saws, starting the cut, recovery when off the line. I'd vote to get cheap white wood from a home center, probably no thicker than 1". This would involve use of a chalk line, maybe marking guage.

We'd need to sort out saw benches. I feel like this is cart-and-horse time. If you can't saw, how do you make a sawbench, but if you don't have a sawbench, how to you saw.....

I bet if we put our heads together we could come up with a simple temporary solution. Maybe a few 2x6's nailed down to some logs.

4. Yet another gathering, sharpen and use of cross cut saws. I'd say that once we learned to file rip, that we could knock out both sharpeing and sawing with a cross cut.

5. Now the fun part? Gathering to make a saw bench and a basic bench hook. Now that we can rip and cross cut (I hope!).

Anyone think this sounds like fun? I sure do.

So, I ask everyone who is interested, chime in with your thoughts.

I'm partial to multiple gatherings. My experience to date has been too much has been crammed into one class for me to develope enough skill.

Future gatherins could include joinery saws (dovetail, tenon and the like). I think if we set up something, the gatherings could also be refreshers or practice for those with more experience.

My ultimate goal, since you wondered, is not world domination :widea:. I'd like to establish a methodical approach to learning and using our beloved handtools as a group.

Of course, sharing some beer and pizza never hurts!

Jim
 
Last edited:

Mike Davis

Mike
Corporate Member
Beer and handsaws don't mix.

But, who's to say you can't enjoy both?

I'd like to try to attend. Hillsborough is probably more convenient than Raleigh or Charlotte for me. Greensboro would be even more better...

I have several old saws in need of restoration. Some new files of the proper type. A saw vise, saw sets, other needed tools. A general idea of the process.

So, count me more in than out.
 

JimmyC

New User
Jimmy
I'm very interested in a gathering for joinery saws, verything for me depends on time, place and family commitments.

I gotta say Jim, I think it's a great idea.:icon_thum
 

MikeL

New User
Michael
Hey Jim, I echo JimmyC's statement above. It's a great idea that I would be very interested in depending on schedule. Bill's dovetail class was an eye opener of how very little I know about properly using hand tools.

After this venture you can establish your curriculum for welding!!! I miss the Siler City shop. Good times.
 

jarrett

New User
Jarrett
I would definitely be interested in something like this. I was about to go and try and figure it out myself, but it would be great to work with others and learn from that. I'd even be up for a shopping trip with others to pick up wood (and perhaps a cheap saw to practice sharpening?)

Jarrett
 

SSuther

Stan
Corporate Member
I'm going to be doing a short session on handsaw sharpening at the next Mid West Tool collector Association meeting in Waxhaw on April 11. I'm certainly no expert, but I've had an interest in saw sharpening for a number of years and have accumulated some knowledge and tools for doing this. My saws cut pretty well, so I guess I'm doing something right.

The meetings are good places to pick up some good deals on hand tools, too. See http://www.mwtca.org/. We're in Area Q.
 

jarrett

New User
Jarrett
Just trying to bring some ideas and thoughts here to help make this a reality...

A nice, easy starter project would be a bench hook; just three pieces of wood, a couple of rips, and then we have something to help us saw. Might be too basic for everyone other than me though :)

But, speaking from someone who doesn't really have a surface to saw on, a sawbench would be a great project to start with and would help with other projects in the future. I just wonder if a project with mortise and tenons will be doable for someone of my newbieism? Eager to find out...
 

froglips

New User
Jim Campbell
I like your idea, a bench hook would be an excellent addition to our Evil Master Plan!

Philosophically, one thing I'm hoping to "break the mold" on is project classes. In my past (long, dark, murky and sometimes foul smelling), I'd come away from a class with a half completed project, and no substantial gains in my fundimental skills.

I'd ask to refine your request to a "crude bench hook". I think we could add that to the sawbench day. I've seen too many bench hooks that were made excessively precise.

No joinery is beyond your ability. Just takes time and practice.

What I hope to start here is building up our skills so we can more effectively and efficiently learn the good stuff.

Keep the ideas flowing!

Jim

Just trying to bring some ideas and thoughts here to help make this a reality...

A nice, easy starter project would be a bench hook; just three pieces of wood, a couple of rips, and then we have something to help us saw. Might be too basic for everyone other than me though :)

But, speaking from someone who doesn't really have a surface to saw on, a sawbench would be a great project to start with and would help with other projects in the future. I just wonder if a project with mortise and tenons will be doable for someone of my newbieism? Eager to find out...
 

froglips

New User
Jim Campbell
Good to hear from ya. I too miss welding class. Still plugging away with my $15 Montgomery Wards flea market welder.

Bill's classes sure are fun.

Schedule and location are always a problem. Some folks seem to have other priorities (jobs, familys, American Idol). My hope is to create something like the Turn-n-Learns that woodturners do.

Something that lets a group of Flatearthers get togheter spend some time and go home a little further down the path.

Also, make the topic as discrete as possible so we stand a better chance of success in a shorter period of time.

Say 2 hours (plus beer and pizza time). Thats a lot of saw filing, but I'd guess enough to get through one 5 to 7 TPI saw.

Maybe in the early days we could meet at one of the public parks in RTP, somewhere sort of central.

Jim

Hey Jim, I echo JimmyC's statement above. It's a great idea that I would be very interested in depending on schedule. Bill's dovetail class was an eye opener of how very little I know about properly using hand tools.

After this venture you can establish your curriculum for welding!!! I miss the Siler City shop. Good times.
 

froglips

New User
Jim Campbell
I'm sure hoping to make your presentation! Very exciting.

As we plow through this, I sure would appreciate your input and experience.

What do you think of doing one rip saw, say 5 to 8 tpi in an afternoon? Is that too much, not enough? Assuming all the operations required (jointing, shaping, sharpening, setting, sidedressing) if I recall correctly.

Jim

I'm going to be doing a short session on handsaw sharpening at the next Mid West Tool collector Association meeting in Waxhaw on April 11. I'm certainly no expert, but I've had an interest in saw sharpening for a number of years and have accumulated some knowledge and tools for doing this. My saws cut pretty well, so I guess I'm doing something right.

The meetings are good places to pick up some good deals on hand tools, too. See http://www.mwtca.org/. We're in Area Q.
 

cptully

New User
Chris

froglips

New User
Jim Campbell
Thanks Chris. I'm going to keep this and add to a new thread I plan to start.

As part of Step 1, I'd like to create a resource thread with just this kind of info.

Thanks!

Jim
 

froglips

New User
Jim Campbell
Ok you crazy see sawers, lets keep the cuts coming.

I noticed that Bill Anderson is also teaching his Handsaw Class at woodcraft coming up in may.

WC Sharpening Handsaws
May 17th, 2009

http://www.edwardsmountainwoodworks.com/pls/apex/f?p=EMW_8329:CLASS_DESC_VIEWER:0::NO::p1954_id:83

I had the pleasure of taking this class last summer. I'm very excited to see he's expanded the day to cover use as well as sharpening.

Ok, I'm going to start a new thread, one called "Handsaw: Resources". Feel free to post links, tips, advice or anything that could be used to learn more about saws.

I'm going to sort of moderate that thread. Lets keep questions for other threads.

My hope is to convice the site to let us create a group editable Sticky for this. Eventually a Handsaw FAQ or something like that.

If all goes well, I'm thinking we could shoot for a first get together towards the end of the month.

Thanks,
Jim
 

Jerome B

New User
Jerome
Thank you for putting this together Jim. You are organizing this in a way that I just couldn't do earlier and didn't know how to acknowledge so. That and you are a great wordsmith.

Once again thanks for putting this together.

I'm excited!!! We're on the way towards being able to do a project together. Yippie.
Jerome
 

Jerome B

New User
Jerome
Heck yeah you can build a saw horse with hand tools, when you have no idea what you are up too. I did and I am still using them 7 years later. They don't look all that great, but they were made to be used and, as an exercise in sawing. So oh well, they look funky, but they work!
The funny part is that I made a set of new sawhorses to take out into the public, because the are not the greatest looking, and they don't work as well as the original ones. I added one or two too many extra bells and whistles. Oh well. Next

I have a design for a cheap traveling workbench that is a good exercise in cutting mortises and tenons and cutting tusk tenons. That is is if we get to the point that we want to meet and everyone wants to have a bench.

Jerome

I like your idea, a bench hook would be an excellent addition to our Evil Master Plan!

Philosophically, one thing I'm hoping to "break the mold" on is project classes. In my past (long, dark, murky and sometimes foul smelling), I'd come away from a class with a half completed project, and no substantial gains in my fundimental skills.

I'd ask to refine your request to a "crude bench hook". I think we could add that to the sawbench day. I've seen too many bench hooks that were made excessively precise.

No joinery is beyond your ability. Just takes time and practice.

What I hope to start here is building up our skills so we can more effectively and efficiently learn the good stuff.

Keep the ideas flowing!

Jim
 
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