Hand saw sharpening #3: Saw vise box version - quick and clean

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Blog entry by mafe posted 10-04-2016 09:54 PM 3210 reads 4 times favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 2: Fileklemme / European saw vise - quick and clean. Part 3 of Hand saw sharpening series no next part

Saw vise box version
quick and clean

Having bought a few old saws and inspired by plenty of friends here on LJ, I made my own version of a saw vise, inspired by the Danish fileklemme princip.
(This one was made back in 2014 and are one of the many projects I never found time to publish).

In this small blog you will see how i made mine, if you are looking for serious saw info about sharpening and setting up saws, I can highly recommend my friend Andy’s / Brit’s series where you can follow his journey into the world of saws: Andy is a wonderful educator as well as a man with a good heart, trust me I had the joy of meeting up with him.

But let’s jump in to it.
A piece of ply and some scarp wood.

Looked at the saws I had and decided for a length of the box.
Then it was just to cut the wood to length.

And the plywood of course…

Ran the wood for the jaws and spacers through the planner / jointer.
Just to straighten it and make a fresh glue surface.

Glue on one side.

Then mount with a row of screws for extra strength.

Then I ran the sides through the table saw, with the blade at a light angle.

One side done.

Cutting a few strips of leather for hinges and mounting them with a row of screws.

Then attaching the two sides.

Back on the bench I made two little turn out holders, these will support the box vise.
Added a extra so I can use them for other purposes also, they have actually been in use often.
(It’s the three brown wood things sticking out from the underside of the bench top).

The vice in place.
At first I thought I would just use C claps for the top, really that’s all you need and how many woodworkers used to do it in Denmark, a pair of straight boards and a few clamps.

But decided to make a row of holes, where I can put bolts and wing nuts, so I can concentrate the pressure where needed. (Also sure I had Andys version of a vise in the back of my head).

That’s it, saw vise ready for refreshing some teeth’s.

The angled cut makes fine room for the file.

And the wing nuts can give a firm grip.

Perhaps you spotted there were coffee and croissant on the table at the last picture and thought: ‘that guy have too much joy’, but that was not all, later that night I had Irish coffee, whipped cream the woodworker way…

Back to the box, easy to store and one is able to file a relatively large saw without having to open and close the jaws.
So yes it is worth the build.

Slept in the workshop that night, sleeping on one of these, right there between the tools and in the smell of wood, if there is a heaven, I’m sure it smells like that.

Hope this can inspirer others to hold on to sharpen some saws.

The best of my thoughts,

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

6 comments so far

View Joe Lyddon's profile

Joe Lyddon

10963 posts in 5205 days

#1 posted 10-05-2016 12:59 AM

Looks good!

Thank you!

-- Have Fun! Joe Lyddon - Alta Loma, CA USA - Home: ... My Small Gallery:

View lew's profile


13377 posts in 4908 days

#2 posted 10-05-2016 01:28 AM

That is a fantastic saw vice. It sure beats the old metal one that I learned sharpening on. I think it must have been about 8” long. File, move, file, move.

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

View Philip's profile


1277 posts in 3692 days

#3 posted 10-05-2016 02:25 AM

Great post Mads, keep up the joy!

-- I never finish anyth

View johnhutchinson's profile


1243 posts in 2782 days

#4 posted 10-05-2016 03:02 AM


You take the “work” out of “woodworking”.
And that’s a good thing. :-)

-- John - Central Ohio - "too much is never enough"

View Brit's profile


8334 posts in 3996 days

#5 posted 10-08-2016 02:14 PM

Thanks for the shout out Mads. I’m touched. That’s a lovely saw vice you made yourself there.

-- 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


13204 posts in 4242 days

#6 posted 10-17-2016 10:30 AM

Hi there,
Brit, you are the man Andy, for you I would scream! Thanks.
John, woodrambling… Laugh, thanks.
Philip, I will keep up, keeping up.
Lew, Cheap, functional and easy to build, hard to beat that. I have one of these metal versions also and yes the problem is the limited capacity but with the little saw sharpening most of us do, that’s really not a problem. The reason I made this one a wish to refile some saws at a time, just don’t seem to find time for that… So many projects, so little time.
Joe, so do you! Smiles.
Best thoughts,

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

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