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I have no gripe with hand-powered miter boxes, carpenter's handsaws, and such. However, as I cut dovetail pins and tails freehand with backsaws, I must say something is inherently wrong with the design. I'd like to see a backsaw with the handle rotated to almost horizontal. When I'm cutting dovetails, I like to have the vise and work at chest-height, and often I'm sitting down when I start cutting. Wouldn't it be SO much more comfortable pushing a saw with the handle almost horizontal?? Working with your arm and wrist twisted in order for your fist to assume an almost vertical position to grip the saw handle is fatiguing, and moreover, not very accurate. Admittedly, this problem is mostly due to my eyesight, but gripping things with a vertical fist is something I'd rather do with a beer stein than my workshop tools. Even my dozuki and other straight-handled saws present the same need for a contortioned arm to operate. Heck, even gangstas hold their weapons in a horizontal plane! Pretend you're operating a hand-operated miter saw on your bench in front of you as you sit…wouldn't a horizontal grip be much more comfortable?
Has anyone else ever thought of a horizontal grip on a backsaw?
 
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