Bow Saws

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Project by Ben posted 07-12-2009 06:02 PM 8603 views 19 times favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch

These are a couple bow saws I made recently. The bigger saw has three blades I bought at traditional I got a 3/8 inch blade for cutting curves, and two 1.5 inch blades with differnet amounts of teeth for rough or smooth cutting. They came in a set. The frame parts are made of red oak, and the handles are made of walnut. It is still a work in progress. I’m fine tuning the shape of the handles and such as I use it so I haven’t finished it yet. Also, I made the stiles to thin for my hands to control well so I used an old trick for making wooden bat handles a little thicker using athletic tape. The handles are made of walnut and the pins are aluminum rods I bought at home depot and are epoxied into the handles. It works really well now that the blades have been worn in. The string is simple masonry twine from home depot wrapped around about 10 times on each side.
The smaller saw was made from parts you can find locally at any hardware store. I didn’t want to spend too much money on my first attempts at making saws so I bought coping saw blades at home depot and designed the saw around them. The saw pictured is the second small saw I made. The first one went to my Father-in-law. The saw is made entirely of oak, and not one power tool was used in its construction. The pins are 1/4 in aluminum rod from the home depot that have been epoxied into the handles. It doesn’t have quite as much clearance as the metal frame coping saws, but it holds the blade much tighter and in my “biased” opinion cuts much better. Both of these saws were alot of fun to make, and they work great. So if your thinking about making your own tools, these are a great place to start

-- Do something nice for somebody

8 comments so far

View Ben's profile


273 posts in 4788 days

#1 posted 07-12-2009 06:37 PM

I designed them myself. They were based off the blade lengths and then I used whole ratios and the wood I had on hand to dimension the other parts. Trial and error type stuff.

-- Do something nice for somebody

View Rob Drown's profile

Rob Drown

837 posts in 4908 days

#2 posted 07-12-2009 07:15 PM

Wow nice JOB. I am making the same set of saws. I have TFWW’s plans for the small saw, but cannot find a plan for the larger saw. What dimensions did you use?

-- The expectations of life depend upon diligence; the mechanic that would perfect his work must first sharpen his tools. Confucius, 经过艰苦的努力的梦想可以成真

View Elaine's profile


113 posts in 4698 days

#3 posted 07-12-2009 08:02 PM

My kind of tools, beautiful job!

View a1Jim's profile


118161 posts in 4652 days

#4 posted 07-12-2009 08:24 PM

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


20775 posts in 4751 days

#5 posted 07-13-2009 06:36 AM

VEry nice saws!!

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View abie's profile


922 posts in 4846 days

#6 posted 07-15-2009 03:57 AM

Nicely done.
I just ordered pins from Gramm….to replace the old pins I have in the antique saw I found in the local dump.
refurbished and now with new blades from Gramm….
Great saws.
there are lots of pictures on this site if you care to explore…

-- Bruce. a mind is like a book it is only useful when open.

View Ben's profile


273 posts in 4788 days

#7 posted 07-17-2009 05:05 AM

The dimmensions on the small saw are as follow: the wood is all 3/4 stock. The stiles or uprights are or 9in x 1 in the rail is 6.75 in x 1in not including the tenons. The rail is right in the middle of the stiles. The handles are ~2.75 in x 1in. The pins are ~2.25 inches long.
The large saw has a 15.5 in blade. The stiles are 12.5 inches tall, and the rail is 15.75 inches not including the tenons. The bottom of the rail is 6.75 inches up from the very bottom of the saw. Both the reils and stiles are .75 in stock and 1.5 inches wide. The handles are 3.5 inches long and 3/4 in square, but they’re a little small for me. The pins are 3/8 inch round AL bar and are 3 3/8 in long total.
I think that about sums it up. If anyone has anymore questions feel free to ask.

-- Do something nice for somebody

View Jon3's profile


497 posts in 5180 days

#8 posted 07-17-2009 04:06 PM

I saw your post on my bowsaw, and meant to comment here as well. This rash of bowsaw posts lately inspired me to check one out for myself. Quite a handy tool to have around!

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