Small tenon saw, Part 1

I’ve had the fantasy of making my own backsaw ever since I heard of someone else doing it. Unfortunately, I have an immediate need: A crosscut tenon saw for, well, cutting tenon shoulders. I do not have time to fool around forever, and I do not want to grind off any more of my current Jackson backsaw.

When I was in OSH the other day, though, I noticed that among the usual crud, there was a 10-inch Craftsman-brand “dovetail saw.” It featured the same general dimensions of the tenon saw I’d envisioned. In addition, the blade was moderately-sized–not as thick as a handsaw or the bigger backsaws, but not as thin as a dovetail saw is supposed to be.

I thought, “heh.” The teeth were ground in an absurd way; it was sort of a semicircular-type pattern. Plus, it had wavy set (on a 16 TPI saw!). Gee, thanks for trying, guys.

But it was only $10, and was purported to be made in the USA, so I thought, well, hmm, maybe I can make something of this, since it does have a blade and a back that I wouldn’t need to make and attach. So I bought one, then promptly went to town milling off the teeth with my saw jointer:

(“Fine, smooth finish cuts.” Yeah, sure, buddy.)

Well, at least the first stage seems to have gone fine. Next, I ought to cut new teeth. I’m thinking that I’d like somewhere around 14 TPI. Then I want to make a handle to replace that silly gent’s handle. I’d like to make the handle from beech or cherry. After today’s episode with beech, I’m not sure I want to mess with that so soon again (at least, as long as I do not have a scrub plane), but then again, I don’t know much about cherry’s durability, and these are not large parts that we’re talking about here. Eh, I don’t have to decide tonight.

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