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Thread: Crosscut Hand Saw Rehab

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2017
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    Saint Paul, MN USA
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    Crosscut Hand Saw Rehab

    I picked up this 26" hand saw with Warranted Superior Medallion for $5. It had a LOT wrong with it and I think I overpaid for $5. But what was done was done so I went to work. Here's the saw as I got it:
    0110191422.jpg0110191422a.jpg

    As you can see it was very rusted, the finish on the handle was pretty much gone, there was one crack that went all the way through the handle and many other smaller surface cracks, there was also a saw screw missing from the handle (the saw nut was still there on the opposing side though, and the saw plate had a bit of a bend near the tip.

    Here it is disassembled:
    0110191426.jpg

    And here I'm removing rust with Windex and sandpaper:
    0110191911.jpg0110191914.jpg

    After that, I went to work on the handle. I saw that scraping with a razor blade might be possible - I couldn't get it work well, though, so just sanded it clean:
    0111191424.jpg0111191424a.jpg0111191424b.jpg

    Love the wood in that handle - I think it's beech, right?

  2. #2
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    Dec 2017
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    Saint Paul, MN USA
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    Then I went to work sharpening. I haven't done many crosscut saws and I thought I was keeping the rake geometry the same as the previous shape but as you can see I was generally making it more aggressive.

    0111191544.jpg0111191613.jpg

    Here's the handle with the BLO and paste wax on. I glued the big crack after finishing which was totally backwards...good lesson for next time. Any rate, I was able to clean the glue up just fine with steel wool afterwards.

    0111191710.jpg0113191937.jpg

    Here everything is put back together. The missing saw screw I got from a set of ten screws and nuts made by Great Neck available on Amazon.

    0122191452.jpg0122191453.jpg0122191453b.jpg0122191454.jpg

  3. #3
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    Here are some last shots. I love the look of freshly sharpened hand saws from a particular angle. These two are the crosscut from this post and a 5 1/2 TPI rip saw that I rehabbed too:

    0122191454a.jpg0112191605.jpg

    The bend was addressed using the Paul Sellers very complicated method of "bending the other way" lol - worked like a charm (although I know from experience that it doesn't always). The saw plate I finished with 3 in 1 oil and some paraffin wax.

    Even though the tooth geometry turned out a bit more aggressive than I'd have liked, this saws like a dream. Easily one of the best crosscut saws I've used. Starting the cut may be a little more difficult but it usually is anyways on a freshly sharpened saw. I'm also pleased with how the handle turned out. Very comfortable. Thanks for watching

  4. #4
    Nice Work
    Got a couple questions; I never heard of Windex for rust removal.
    How does that work out?
    Also, that is a really marked change in color on the non-medallion side of handle.
    Is that "uni-body"? Repair? chemical change caused by removal old finish?
    Thanks, Mike H.

  5. #5
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    Dec 2017
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    Hi Mike - thanks for the comments.

    The Windex doesn't remove the rust - it's all about providing some lubrication for the sandpaper Some guys use WD-40, too. Since it's wet/dry sandpaper I assume you could use water as well...but I'd be concerned with rusting.

    The color difference in the handle is all in the wood. It's so beautiful to look at close up. It must have just been in the piece (unless someone messed with it previously?) of lumber.

  6. #6
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    Jul 2015
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    Broadview Heights, OH
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    Tate,

    I've been restoring saws for almost 30 years, but never considered windex. I'm going to give it a try! I use mineral spirits which is somewhat stinky, even when using the odorless variety.

  7. #7
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    Hey Pete - yes I recommend it. I'm not sure if it ends up being cheaper than mineral spirits or not...and it does stink as well haha - so it's probably about the same either way!

  8. #8
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    Windex, huh? Interesting. I always reach for the WD, next time I will try some windex just for giggles.
    ---Trudging the Road of Happy Destiny---

  9. #9
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    Lafayette, Indiana
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    Vinegar (also smells) but does a nice job cutting through the rust and it is cheap. Some advocate diluting it. I use it full strength on really rusty stuff. Sometimes you need to soak, scrape and repeat. Instead of sand paper, you can use scotch brite pads or scotch brite dobies that have a nice nylon abrasive surface that is softer than metal. They won't scratch the metal like sandpaper. You need to wash the blade thoroughly if you use vinegar - it is an acid. You can also use plastic scrapers like an old credit card.

  10. #10
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    But that is a chemical reaction and the result is an unnatural looking saw blade. We're just talking about some lubricant to keep silicon carbide paper from clogging up.

  11. #11
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    Here's another victory for Windex that occurred just tonight haha. Another WS saw - this one a beat up and abused 12" backsaw:

    Before

    0122191050.jpg0122191051c.jpg

    During:

    0123191958a.jpg

    After:

    0123192013.jpg0123192013a.jpg

    I haven't really addressed the handle on this one yet. The teeth have a horrendous case of "cows and calves" (is that right?) - so I'll have to re-cut the teeth and do some other fiddling yet too.

  12. #12
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    Tate, if you joint the tooth line down just far enough to touch the tops of the shorter teeth you should be able to shape them to joint without re-cutting all new teeth. I’ve had to do this on quite a few old saws, sometimes it takes 2 jointings but for a good quality old saw it’s worth the work.
    ---Trudging the Road of Happy Destiny---

  13. #13
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    Awesome - thanks for the tip - I can certainly try!

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by brian zawatsky View Post
    Tate, if you joint the tooth line down just far enough to touch the tops of the shorter teeth you should be able to shape them to joint without re-cutting all new teeth. Iíve had to do this on quite a few old saws, sometimes it takes 2 jointings but for a good quality old saw itís worth the work.
    Actually now that I'm thinking of it, there aren't really any shorter teeth on this one. It looks like the weird M pattern on some big crosscut saws:
    0123192013b.jpg

    Am I dealing with something else here?

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tate Harmann View Post
    Actually now that I'm thinking of it, there aren't really any shorter teeth on this one. It looks like the weird M pattern on some big crosscut saws:
    0123192013b.jpg

    Am I dealing with something else here?
    that is almost certainly someone’s failed attempt at filing sloped gullets. I would joint that saw aggressively and even out the gullet line, as well as the tooth height. I like some slope on my crosscut-filed saws, but that is way excessive. As a result the tooth geometry is all screwed up, as you can see.

    I would joint it hard and re-shape the teeth with the goal of evening out the rake angle, tooth height, and gullet depth. I’d bet that saw will need 2 good jointings to get it all back to serviceable shape.

    Another tip: as you are doing your shaping passes, you want to even out the tooth spacing as you file to joint. This will require varying where you put the pressure on the saw file. Some teeth you will have to press straight down into the gullet, some you will have to press into the back of one tooth, some you will want more pressure on the face of the tooth. All depends on which direction you want the tooth to move to even out the spacing & tooth height.
    Last edited by brian zawatsky; 01-23-2019 at 11:50 PM. Reason: fixed spelling
    ---Trudging the Road of Happy Destiny---

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