Hand saw sharpening #1: Saw file holder - Jointer / Edger

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Blog entry by mafe posted 03-15-2012 06:22 PM 37214 reads 7 times favorited 22 comments Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of Hand saw sharpening series Part 2: Fileklemme / European saw vise - quick and clean. »

Saw file holder
Jointer / Edger

After watching our LJ friend Brit ’s (Andy) blog about saws where he makes a file holder and show a picture of an old ‘topping clamp’ in the comments, I fell in love with the simplicity of the old one and so decided to make one today.

It took an hour and works perfectly well.
Andy was concerned that the wedge could work its way out so I made it extra low, 3 degrees.

The stuff.
A file, a piece of wonderful dark hard wood, I believe it is from the Chokolattebollotree (or so) and comes from a shipping cradle, finally also a piece of blonde hardwood (an arm from a trashed parasol).
A typical MaFe project…

Fire up the pipe and then time for some shaves.
OMG that wood smells so wonderful, almost like a tobacco itself.

Straighten one side of the wedge.

With my new tapering jig I make the wedge.

Now it is possible to mark up the rabbet for the wedge and file.

A cut on the table saw.

One more now on the taper jig to match the wedge.

And a few extra to remove material.

Cleaning up with a chisel.
(I use Japanese tools today…).

Shaping a little for a comfortable grip.

And drilling a hole for hanging with my wonderful old French hand drill.

We have a saw file holder.

Another reason for me to make that saw sharpen vice…

Fast easy and effective.
I love it!

This holder can also be used for your scrapers, but I have made another version earlier for that purpose.

I hope this could be to some inspiration, perhaps even some holders…

Best thoughts,

-- MAD F, the fanatical rhykenologist and vintage architect.

22 comments so far

View Brandon's profile


4382 posts in 4287 days

#1 posted 03-15-2012 06:31 PM

I agree with the sentiments of another LJ who recently stated that every time you post a project, my to-do list becomes greater! Thanks the for the post, as always.

-- "hold fast to that which is good"

View SASmith               's profile


1850 posts in 4322 days

#2 posted 03-15-2012 06:34 PM

Clever and simple. I like it.
Thanks for sharing.

-- Scott Smith, Southern Illinois

View Philip's profile


1277 posts in 3874 days

#3 posted 03-15-2012 06:34 PM

This looks great, and a good use for the new tapering jig. How do you use it? I’ve never sharpened a saw blade, this seems like it would take the edge off the teeth?

-- I never finish anyth

View Don W's profile

Don W

20281 posts in 3903 days

#4 posted 03-15-2012 06:41 PM

Always a pleasure.

-- - Collecting is an investment in the past, and the future.

View stefang's profile


17040 posts in 4669 days

#5 posted 03-15-2012 07:44 PM

Practical, easy to make, easy to use and it looks great. Who could ask for more? Great work Mads!

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View Brit's profile


8463 posts in 4178 days

#6 posted 03-15-2012 08:00 PM

I knew you’d pull a wedgie Mads after building your tapering jig. So you did put the wedge in from the back and it works OK. I don’t understand that. Why wouldn’t you put it in from the front so it tightens the file? Just curious as I don’t really understand the science of wedging things.

-- Andy - Old Chinese proverb says: "If you think something can't be done, don't interrupt man who is doing it."

View jacobRM's profile


33 posts in 3665 days

#7 posted 03-15-2012 09:07 PM

wonderful tool n post. you’re very talented Mafe..

the wood looks like Rosewood to me :) ( rio palisander)


-- Cabinetmakers apprentice at PPmĂžbler Denmark

View lew's profile


13488 posts in 5090 days

#8 posted 03-15-2012 09:33 PM

Nice! Very Nice!

-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

View Philip's profile


1277 posts in 3874 days

#9 posted 03-15-2012 09:38 PM

I wish people shipped things to my work with wood like that, wow.

Is that a PLASTIC knob on your tapering jig?? LOL

-- I never finish anyth

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

27250 posts in 4441 days

#10 posted 03-15-2012 10:05 PM

Cool. Thanks for sharing, my friend!!...............Jim

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

View pastorglen's profile


267 posts in 4025 days

#11 posted 03-16-2012 02:39 AM

A+ All the way around.

And I need one of these, so your timing is perfect.

(I should have done this project tonight instead of fiddling around with another rising dovetail exercise.

THANK YOU for posting.

-- Glen, Pennsylvania, Colossians 3:23 "Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men."

View Tim Dahn's profile

Tim Dahn

1628 posts in 4900 days

#12 posted 03-16-2012 11:02 PM

Great shop tool

-- Good judgement comes from experience and experience comes from poor judgement.

View Tootles's profile


808 posts in 3837 days

#13 posted 03-17-2012 09:14 AM

Very nice Mads

Brit, whether the wedge is in from the back or the front depends on which way Mads uses it. He has photos of it in use both ways (the last two).

-- I may have lost my marbles, but I still have my love of woodworking

View Brit's profile


8463 posts in 4178 days

#14 posted 03-17-2012 09:57 AM

Tootles – I realise that and I don’t doubt it works if Mads says it does, but to me it just seems logical that the action of filing should tighten the wedge, not loosen it. I suppose it doesn’t matter as there is friction either way.

-- Andy - Old Chinese proverb says: "If you think something can't be done, don't interrupt man who is doing it."

View mafe's profile


13682 posts in 4424 days

#15 posted 03-18-2012 01:56 PM

Hi guys,
Yes it depends on the way you use it, so really it does not matter.
But honestly it does not matter since I made the wedge so low angle that you need a hammer to get it out, so it will never fall out. Infact I think it will hold as well as if I used screws.
Have a nice Sunday.
Best thoughts,

-- MAD F, the fanatical rhykenologist and vintage architect.

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