Tuesday, 8 April 2014

An old 16" Henry Disston no 4 steel backed tennon saw. 14 tp" Dated 1923

I bought this a few years ago from E bay.When it arrived I was disappointed by its condition due to its handle being in very poor condition, one of those traders who wasn't as honest as they should be by covering up the damage from the angle of the photos he had shown, so it got chucked into the drawer and left there.

I had tried to use it a few time but due to its handle damage causing it to be loose as I  could not tighten it, I found it difficult to control the saws movements so back into the drawer it went till now.

As I'm shutting down the workshop I'm being brutal and disposing of everything I can do with out in the new workshop, but, I decided not to with this one its time to do something with it, First a new handle and somewhere along the line I decided to shorten the blade as well to give this saw a new lease of life.


I tried to keep this as traditional as possible but  drew  a blank on getting any apple wood to  cut the new handle  from so eventually  settles on some nice black walnut.

First I decided to shorten the length of the blade  for two reasons really  first it was difficult to handle a tenon saw of 16" in length and also the front end of the blade was badly pitted.

So how do you cut a saw blade in  half ( not easy )  actual it was easy as shown here  hack saw and metal shears, hack saw for the steel back and the shears for the blade  as the hack saw would not even make any  lea way into the  disston blade but the shears  cut it like butter.

Next plane the black walnut to 21 mm thick drop on the the old handle and draw round it drill a few holes in all the right places and you have the new shape for a handle. Once you have the rough cut shape it all down to hand work  then  with rasp files. Its the first time I have used these  impressive   my only gripe with them  they  could be slightly larger  and  have a handle, having said that they were very very impressive.

 My hand were sore when I had finish rasping this, Here it is  the nearly finished handle  its it first fitting  some small bites and pieces still to touch up here and there  once there done source some stain and polish.  

Tomorrow  remove the handle and stain and polish   later in the day take just the blade to my local timber merchants and get it  sent off t for  sharpening,  my eyes aren't that good any more  with teeth at 14  tpi"   the saw is now 12 " in length with the steel back it nice and weighty.   enjoy.

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