substitute for dovetail saw - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 22 Old 01-03-2015, 11:11 PM Thread Starter
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substitute for dovetail saw

Hey all,

So I would like to starting practicing some jointing on scrap pieces of wood I have laying around. Since I am new to this craft, I do not have a dovetail saw. I also don't have $70 for what seems to be the lower tier pricing for those saws here.

Is there anything I can use in place of a dovetail saw? Maybe a hacksaw? Coiter saw? Just wondering if there is a hear option to start off with. Also I would prefer it to be a hand tool as I definitely can't afford power tools at the moment.

Thanks all!
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post #2 of 22 Old 01-03-2015, 11:32 PM
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A fine tooth Japanese pull saw will also be sufficient.
A decent one can be picked up for around $40
I know there's a YouTube video of dovetails with a hacksaw, maybe take a look at that.
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post #3 of 22 Old 01-04-2015, 03:25 AM
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If it cuts wood, it can be used to cut a dovetail. Personally, I refuse to believe that there is anything that makes a dovetail saw $100 worth of better over any other woodworking saw. You could use a hack saw or a backsaw, really anything thats stiff enough to keep straight in the cut. Personally, I like dozukis. Its a Japanese style backsaw, cuts on the pull stroke and leaves a really clean cut. Best part, you can pick one up for around $20, and the little bugger's have an endless list of uses

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post #4 of 22 Old 01-04-2015, 08:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by epicfail48 View Post
If it cuts wood, it can be used to cut a dovetail. Personally, I refuse to believe that there is anything that makes a dovetail saw $100 worth of better over any other woodworking saw. You could use a hack saw or a backsaw, really anything thats stiff enough to keep straight in the cut. Personally, I like dozukis. Its a Japanese style backsaw, cuts on the pull stroke and leaves a really clean cut. Best part, you can pick one up for around $20, and the little bugger's have an endless list of uses
Totally agree.

As you progress in your new art you can add tools.

George
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post #5 of 22 Old 01-04-2015, 10:49 AM
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I was surprised to see Japanese saws by Irwin at Lowes for about 15 bucks. I plan on buying one of the double sided rip/crosscut saws. Anyone use these?

Dick Hutchings
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post #6 of 22 Old 01-04-2015, 11:28 AM
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Go to some auctions and see if you can pick up a Disston dovetail saw or backsaw.Great saws and I have bought a lot of them over the years for 5-10$.Not much interest in them at auction.
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post #7 of 22 Old 01-04-2015, 03:11 PM
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Originally Posted by banjopicks View Post
I was surprised to see Japanese saws by Irwin at Lowes for about 15 bucks. I plan on buying one of the double sided rip/crosscut saws. Anyone use these?
Yup, all the bloody time. Fantastic saw

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post #8 of 22 Old 01-04-2015, 03:13 PM
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Glad to hear it.
Thanks

Dick Hutchings
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post #9 of 22 Old 01-04-2015, 05:59 PM
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I never thought I would say that I like the Japanese saws, but I do. I have the one that they sell at Home Depot. I used mine to cut the bottoms of my floor casings when I installed new flooring. I tend to use the Dozukis a lot it really makes a smooth narrow cut. My wife bought me mine at a craft show in Newport RI. I know she spent more money than I would have but I am thankful for the purchase.

Paul
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post #10 of 22 Old 01-04-2015, 10:39 PM Thread Starter
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Wow that's great input thanks guys! I just picked up a hacksaw today to cut some weather stripping for my door so I will give that a go and see how I do. If that fails, I did see those Japanese saws at Lowes so I may try one out and see how that works :)

Thanks for all the advice!
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post #11 of 22 Old 01-05-2015, 02:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arvanlaar View Post
Wow that's great input thanks guys! I just picked up a hacksaw today to cut some weather stripping for my door so I will give that a go and see how I do. If that fails, I did see those Japanese saws at Lowes so I may try one out and see how that works :)

Thanks for all the advice!
Ive tried the hacksaw route before, it didnt end well. The blades just aren't mensnt for cutting wood. Kudos if you get it to work, but I'd look into getting a more wood focused saw

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post #12 of 22 Old 01-05-2015, 06:25 AM
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I wouldn't bother with trying a hacksaw when a dovetail saw can be had so cheap.

Dick Hutchings
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post #13 of 22 Old 01-25-2015, 08:13 PM
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Dovetail saws

Fine Woodworking did a review of Japanese dovetail saws and rated the Z - saw the best value. I have one and it cuts as well as any of my professional Japanese dovetail saws that costs many times more than this saw.

http://www.amazon.com/Rockler-Dozuki...productDetails

For $42 you get a saw that allows you to cut and fit without a lot (if any) chisel work. You need to understand that you need a very light touch since these saws are extremely sharp and don't need pressure to cut and cut very quickly at that.

Jack
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post #14 of 22 Old 01-29-2015, 10:57 AM
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I've been waiting until I find a vintage dovetail saw before I buy one. In the meantime, I've discovered a hacksaw works well enough.
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post #15 of 22 Old 02-06-2015, 11:03 PM
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I'm just starting to try to hand cut some dadoes in some old knotty pine, the kind of wood paneling found in many older homes from the 30's, 40's and 50's.

I'm trying to cut cross grain in wood that is 1 & 1/2 inches wide. The dado dimensions are 3/4 inch wide by 1/4 inch deep.

The technique that I'm trying is to first chisel a saw channel on each side of the dado, then to saw down to 1/4 inch depth. My first attempt gave poor results and it was just too easy to cut too far, even though I was stopping very frequently to check my sawing progress.

So, I stopped using the 12 tpi back saw, and tried a hacksaw. This gave better results:
1. the kerf is very clean and narrow
2. the cut is not aggressive, which allowed good precision in sawing down to the 1/4 inch depth - this was a great help!
3. the "open" nature of the hacksaw allows you to see both side of the cut at the same time

I'm just beginning and I'm sure that there may be drawbacks to this method, but so far it is working better than the back saw.
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post #16 of 22 Old 03-03-2015, 06:04 PM
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Try ordering a Z-saw, pick any vendor. They are great
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post #17 of 22 Old 03-04-2015, 12:25 AM
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This guy cut some nice looking dovetails on a boat using a hacksaw: http://mulesaw.blogspot.com/2013/03/...ld-part-4.html
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post #18 of 22 Old 04-03-2015, 11:23 AM
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Did this with hacksaw

My first attempt at dovetail. I printed and pasted a template I found somewhere on the net. Used a hacksaw with a 1-inch blade to cut. I used a home-made moxon vice to hold the wood. The wood is packing wood (pine, I guess), which was discarded by an office.

john
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post #19 of 22 Old 04-05-2015, 11:23 AM
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One of the best dovetail saws I've ever used right here:

http://www.amazon.com/Shark-10-2410-.../dp/B00004TBQ2
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post #20 of 22 Old 04-05-2015, 02:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Paul_R View Post
One of the best dovetail saws I've ever used right here:

http://www.amazon.com/Shark-10-2410-.../dp/B00004TBQ2
Mind if I ask why you like it?

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