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Anyone got a favorite hand saw that they have had good luck with? I've been doing a lot of shed work and I need one for finishing the seat cuts in rafters and cutting out the bottom plates of shed doors. I know a lot of people use a sawzall for this but I'm working for another carpenter as his helper and I feel it would be more appropriate for me to use my own hand tools instead of brining power tools.
 

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Project Superintendent
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Find a tool auction and get you an old Disston that is in good shape, not kinked or handle broken and still has some steel left to sharpen. You can find 'em on line but hard to tell what kind of shape they are in.
 

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If you can find a pre 1955 disston in good shape grab it.

Jig saw, sawzall works but not near as much fun. And I'll wager if you get set up with a well tuned, sharp and properly set handsaw you will use it for a lot more than just cutting rafter tails. Think of all the times you had to roll out 100' of cord to cut 4 or 5 2x4's, and then roll it back up. :no:
 

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I use a cheep pull saw for this type of work.

Tom
That's no fun. You gotta think about the on site wow factor. A cheap pull saw is just that, a cheap pull saw. But whip out that old Henry Disston with the walnut handle and brass fittings and everybody wants one.
 

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I'd actually recommend a new $10 Stanley hardtooth saw.

1) Sharp teeth are your friend. I doubt you have the files to sharpen a used saw, or a set, or the experience to get it correct. Buy new, for now.

2)Hard tooth saws are throwaway saws - once they're dull, they're done. But they do last a while. They won't cut as nicely as a well sharpened and set high quality saw, but they'll cut the rafters just fine.

3) A nice shiny new saw is an advantage in keeping you cut going true for making 90 degree cuts. The reflection off the saw blade of the edge of the board should line up perfectly with the edge of the board you see just over the top of the saw blade. This will speed up your learning curve of what motion keeps a cut going true.

I wouldn't recommend starting off on a used handsaw.
 

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That's no fun. You gotta think about the on site wow factor. A cheap pull saw is just that, a cheap pull saw. But whip out that old Henry Disston with the walnut handle and brass fittings and everybody wants one.
Apple, chestnut, rosewood, plywood, plastic, but walnut?
 

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I'd actually recommend a new $10 Stanley hardtooth saw.

1) Sharp teeth are your friend. I doubt you have the files to sharpen a used saw, or a set, or the experience to get it correct. Buy new, for now.

2)Hard tooth saws are throwaway saws - once they're dull, they're done. But they do last a while. They won't cut as nicely as a well sharpened and set high quality saw, but they'll cut the rafters just fine.

3) A nice shiny new saw is an advantage in keeping you cut going true for making 90 degree cuts. The reflection off the saw blade of the edge of the board should line up perfectly with the edge of the board you see just over the top of the saw blade. This will speed up your learning curve of what motion keeps a cut going true.

I wouldn't recommend starting off on a used handsaw.
Well, you gotta have a sharpening service to sharpen and set your old Disston, if you are not set up to sharpen it yourself (which is not hard to do with the proper equipment). Most sharpening services still have people that know how to sharpen and set an old handsaw, for less than 10 buck around here. Back in the day I used to gather up all my carpenters handsaws and get them sharpened for them a couple of times a year, but yeah most of em use throw away crap these days.

Too much throwaway stuff in our world already, IMHOP. But then I'm an old fart, in case you hadn't figured it out yet. :laughing:
 

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Most sharpening services still have people that know how to sharpen and set an old handsaw, for less than 10 buck around here.
Sharpening services around here are spotty. I found a new one to try, but the last one turned a finish cut saw into a wet lumber saw.

Maybe some time I'll post a picture of my table saw, it looks similar to the one here:

http://thesawblog.com/?p=803
 

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Bahco saws are the only saws worth buying if your not setting and filing them yourselves, theyre a disposable item. Most builders have 2 in your saw and level scabbard, 1 for general use and the blunt one for drywall, just rotate them back when you buy a new one. I personally like the Bahco ergo with teflon coated blades. Theres about 20 different bahco handsaws at hardware stores here for timber, lamimate flooring, insulation, hebel concrete etc etc.
 

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I'd get one of these.
I have an ice bear version of that saw. Great little saw but I've managed to buckle the fine side slightly but still cuts better than most saws I've used.

The reason I like the ergo saw is the handle is so comfortable that spending £2 extra for a new blade is a no brainer for me. The different blades make light work of each material. One day I hope to have nice saws like the diston but as I'm only just starting off my career, there's no point In owning one.
 

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For cutting out bottom plates at doors on slabs, $10 throw-away with a red plastic handle, or a sawzall, if you can cut it somewhere close to straight. I hate going through a house and finding the plates cut at wacky angles at the doors.

Anyway, what's not "appropriate" about bringing a sawzall? I supply power tools on my jobs, but I never got mad at a helper for going out to his truck and getting his sawzall to keep a job moving along.
 
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