Hand Saw Buying Guide

Saws are tools used to cut materials, usually wood into different shapes to join the parts to make an object. Other materials could be metal or stone. It is often made of tough blades that are operated with a forceful backward and forward movement. In times past, saw blades were made of bronze. They can be powered by hand, steam, electricity, water or other sources. 

Hand Saws are saws powered by using usually one hand. They are called ‘Panel Saws’. Hand Saws are usually found in woodwork or carpentry workshops. 

Features Of A Good Hand Saw:

When making selections for a quality hand saw or one to fit your need, there are several factors to consider:

Saw Types: This refers to the method, pattern or cutting style the hand saw operates. Some of these include crosscut saws, rip saws, back saws, keyhole saws, coping saws, hack saws, flush cutting saws, etc.

The number Of Saw Teeth:

A hand saw with smaller teeth would achieve finer results when cutting smaller objects. The number of teeth on a saw blade is measured in Teeth Per Inch (TPI).

Saw length and size:

Hand Saws differ in their blade size and length. The longer the saw blade, the more capacity each cutting stroke has. But the downside is that the stability and control from the handgrip reduces.

Types of Hand Saws:

Hand Saws can be categorized based on their structures and needs they meet. However, they all have the basic feature of a blade and handle.

  • Back Saw:

A backsaw is a short saw that has a narrow blade. They are used to create fine, straight cuts. They are often referred to as miter saws or Tenon saws.

  • Bow Saw:

This type of saws has long blades with many crosscut teeth. The handle is also shaped like a bow. These teeth are used to get rid of material as pushing and pulling occurs. They are also used for pruning flowers, trimming trees and cutting logs of woods.

  • Coping Saw:

This saw has a thin narrow blade. It is used in many vocations for trimming and cutting. They can be used on different materials to create precise cuts.

  • CrossCut Saw:

This type of saw has a thick blade and large teeth. It is often used for rough cutting wood, trimming branches and campsites.

  • Fret Saw:

This saw has long, large frames and long thin blade. It is used to make complex cuts. However, sawing with it can prove difficult because the blade cannot be rotated.

  • Hack Saw:

This type of saw has cutting blades designed for different materials. It is excellent for cutting pipes, tubes, wood, metal, plastic, etc. They are also light in weight.

  • Keyhole Saw:

This type of saw has a single blade and a round handle. It is used to rough cut circles or other patterns, especially on drywall.

  • Pole Saw:

This saw has a lengthy blade of about 8inch and an extended pole of about 16feet depending on the brand and model. It is used for pruning, hence the length. It is also referred to as the Pole runner.

  • Pruning Saw:

This saw has a wide curved blade, rough teeth, and a pistol-shaped handle. Its teeth are designed to be able to cut in opposite directions. It is used for lawn services and landscaping. 

  • Rip-Cut Saw:

This saw has few teeth per inch and a handle that can be gripped by the arm. It is used for framing.

  • Veneer Saw:

This saw has a short, double-edged blade with about 13 teeth per inch. This specialized saw is used for precision veneer work.

  • Wallboard Saw: 

This saw has a short, wide blade. Just like keyhole saw, it is used in puncturing through panels or drywall to make power tools.

  • Japanese Saw:

This saw has small sharp teeth and a blade with a hardened spine. It moves quickly through the wood and has a powerful strike.

  • Bone Saw:

Bone saw is used for several DIY purposes at home. It is used for cutting bones or bone-like materials.

Caring For Your Hand Saw

Like every other tool, you need to care for your hand saws in such a way that it serves you better and for a longer period. Ways to care for your hand saw include:

  • Store your hand saw in a moisture-free environment or toolbox. This would protect it from rust. You can eliminate moisture from your toolbox by storing charcoal on every tray.

  • Lubricate your blade after each use. You can use a paste wax WD-40 and a dry rag for this purpose. Apply the wax and wipe off after a few minutes. This would also protect the blade from rust.

  • The handle should be cared for as well. Using a cotton rag, apply boiled linseed oil on the handle. Detach the handle from the blade and clean the adjoining area. Use steel wool to scrape off dirt, dust and dried paint.

  • If for reasons of time and depreciation your blade still gets rusty, scrape the area with a razor blade along the length of the blade. The razor should be at a low angle so the blade does not get scratched.

  • You can also use sandpaper and mineral spirit to get rid of the rust. Ensure you do so along the length of the blade as well, and oil the blade after this is done.

  • Ensure you dry the rags before disposal as they can be flammable when soaked in linseed oil or mineral spirits.

  • Use a mask to shield yourself from the fumes of the mineral spirits.

  • Wear gloves to protect your hand from harm while cleaning.

  • Place your toolbox in a safe place and away from the reach of kids.

  • Ensure you use the right type of hand saw for the appropriate purpose and in the accurate pattern.

  • Keep the handle of your hand saw away from objects that could scratch the wooden material so it retains optimal usefulness.

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