Frame Saw #1: Building a frame saw

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Blog entry by Schade posted 11-08-2017 12:39 AM 1612 reads 2 times favorited 4 comments Add to Favorites Watch
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Now that i have a proper Work Bench I decided to build a frame saw so I have something to use to build future projects, such as a tool chest.
I watched several videos online and also bought a video about making frame saws by Isaac from Blackburn tools.
I liked the looks of Isaac’s but I didn’t like the way the blade mounted. So I decided to mount the blade in the handles like Paul Sellers did in his design.

I used a bunch of scrap wood from other projects I’ve done over the years, so all I had to buy was the twine and the saw blades.

I used Walnut for the frame uprights, and I used Bass wood for the beam.

I cut The Frame pieces to rough dimensions with a coping saw, then used a spoke shave clean up the curves.

Again using the spoke shave, chisels, and a rasp I cleaned up my poor sawing skills. and got both sides of the frame identical in shape and size.

Luckily my back saw plate was the same thickness as the frame saw blades. So I used it to but the slot in the frames to mount the blade.

I mounted the blade with some brass screws ( the screws are more like dowels as they don’t thread into the wood and pull out easily for blade changes)

Once the blade was mounted I measured the distance between the frame uprights for the cross beam and made the beam out of Bass wood to keep it light. I made the twine guide and the tension stop out of walnut and put it together.

EUREKA! it works! Now on to the next phase, I need to shape all of the parts to streamline and lighten them, as well as shape the grip. I’ll chronicle the final product in part 2.

As always feel free to critique. I’m always learning.

4 comments so far

View Knappen's profile


63 posts in 2510 days

#1 posted 11-09-2017 03:06 PM

That is looking to be a very nice saw.

The advantage of Isaac’s blade mounting is that you can turn the saw blade and thus rib cut long pieces of wood.
Being a Dane that was the kind of saws we used in woodworking classes when I was young (back in the 1960’ties).

-- Knappen aka Ole - I have to try everything at least once.

View Schade's profile


7 posts in 819 days

#2 posted 11-09-2017 10:01 PM

Thanks Knappen,
Very true, the way I built mine is more like a back saw, so I won’t be able to cut more then maybe 5 1/2” since the beam is about 5 7/8” to the bottom of the teeth.
I might also make a hand guard. I haven’t smashed my fingers yet, but I can see it happening if I’m in the zone and not really paying attention.
I think I’ll take your advise and build a few more of these saws, I was planning on making different sizes with different color woods so they are color coded for their use. They are fun and easy to build and make for a relaxing weekend project.
The bigger saw I will build the traditional way so I can turn the blade for ripping. I might also build the Roubo saw one day.

View woodify's profile


334 posts in 2676 days

#3 posted 11-09-2017 11:32 PM

where did you buy the blades?

-- Woodify ~~

View Schade's profile


7 posts in 819 days

#4 posted 11-10-2017 01:52 PM

The blades are from highland woodworking. They were around $10 each.

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