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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I decided to try and clean up one of my favorite Disston Hand Saw after reading wood_chuckers thread and I’m not sure if I’m doing this right.
I was afraid of losing the Disston inscription in the blade. I didn’t have a way to dip the whole saw into Evapo-Rust Rust Remover so I just poured some onto the blade and let it sit for 1 ½ hours. I then washed it off with a wet sponge, but I’m a little disappointed.
Should I just keep trying the same method or an I wasting my time? I don’t want to damage the insignia.


 

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Here's an article on saw restoration. Near the bottom of the second page he gives instructions for "raising" the etch on the saw plate. I've never tried it, but you might take a look and see if you want to go through the process.
 

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I'd be careful with the evaporust.. I tried it on one that had a decent etch.. After a soak it was totally gone.

I've had good luck using a Sandflex hand block to clean them up.. They brighten the blades up pretty quick and don't clog up like sandpaper does.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Well I tried a couple more time and it only got worst so I had to use WD40 with steel wool & fine sandpaper to get the black crap off. I’m going to take a break and reevaluate this before going any further.

I would like to get a good shiny clean polish but I don't know how with out losing the engraving.


 

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Discussion Starter #5
Here's an article on saw restoration. Near the bottom of the second page he gives instructions for "raising" the etch on the saw plate. I've never tried it, but you might take a look and see if you want to go through the process.
Thanks Tim,
That was a very interesting article, but I was totally confused about his statement: “I remove the saw’s tension, hammer out the kink and re-tension the entire blade”. I understand about removing tension, but how on earth do you re-tension it? :huh:
 

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Thanks Tim,
That was a very interesting article, but I was totally confused about his statement: “I remove the saw’s tension, hammer out the kink and re-tension the entire blade”. I understand about removing tension, but how on earth do you re-tension it? :huh:
That's way beyond me:laughing:. I've never even played with kinked/bent saw blades. Lucky that way, every one I've re-habed has been straight.

I seem to remember someone here talking about hammering out saw blades, but can't remember who. It's been a year or more I think.
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
I’ve been looking for Brownell's Oxpho cold bluing and I can only find it at Cabela's. I don’t buy from them because I’ve always felt they are way over priced. Is there another cold gun blue that I can use at a more reasonable price?

Also after another cleaning, someone’s initials are popping up all over the blade. One is punched in and then another spot looks like he used an etching solution to write his name and location. His initials are also carved into the handle. This guy was one paranoid sob with so many markings and now I’m wondering if the saw may have been destroyed by his actions.

The saw was my dad’s and he bought it at a flea market in 1965 after he lost all of his tools in a city sewage backup. The city maintenance workers responsible for the cleanup threw everything away instead of trying to salvage anything.

Anyway I really like the saw and I do want to sharpen it for my own personal use, but I just don’t know whether I should continue with the restoration. I'm not too happy with someone else's initials on it.:no:
 

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Brownell's Oxpho is available from brownells.com at a much lower price than Cabela's. Unless you live near a Cabela's and don't pay shipping it is the way to go.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Brownell's Oxpho is available from brownells.com at a much lower price than Cabela's. Unless you live near a Cabela's and don't pay shipping it is the way to go.
Thanks I just now checked brownells.com out and they are cheaper, but shipping is outrageous. A 4 oz bottle is $9.99 and shipping is $15.99. I Think I’m going to pass on that stuff all together.

Amazon has Birchwood Casey Blue and Rust Remover for $5 and free shipping so I’m going to try that.
 

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It sounds like your saw belonged to a tradesman who used it to make a living. Their tools are marked so no one would "confuse" them with their own. If it's straight tune it up and use it.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
It sounds like your saw belonged to a tradesman who used it to make a living. Their tools are marked so no one would "confuse" them with their own. If it's straight tune it up and use it.
We used to paint our tools different colors so we knew who belonged to what, then one day a plumber showed up with the same color as someone else so we ended up adding a color band. The colors worked well because you didn’t have to get close to read a name or initials. At least the paint was removable. :laughing:
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I’m going to give it one more try with the Evapo-Rust and when I pull it out I’m going to throw in another saw blade. This blade is a lot cleaner now and the temperature is a lot warmer so hopefully it will take it all off this time. Not so sure about the second blade, but it’s not that great of a saw so it will not matter much.

I made a dipping trough out of some scrap wood to minimize the solution. It just fits the blade and I covered it with a plastic bag to hold the solution with drill bits under it to raise it up for the solution to flow under.



 

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Discussion Starter #13
Wood Handle Finish?

So I've been wondering what to do for the handle

Should I sand down the wood handle and finish it and what type of finish should I use?
 

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Discussion Starter #14
So while I’m trying to decide what to do with the wood handle I started cleaning the brass hardware with lemon juice & salt.
And now that I can finally read it, I realized that the saw is a 26in Disston D-8 with Dual Grip (thumbhole) 6TPI rip saw w/Apple handle. The 1-in Medallion reads "H.DISSTON&SONS * PHILADA" indicating it was made sometime between1896-1917


I don’t know the exact value but there is one on eBay with a buy-it-now price tag of $140 and another for $250 which I personally think is outrages. LOL
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Got a picture of the handle? Might help with suggestions for finish/refinish.
Yes I do. I already started cleaning it after trying to get some spilled paint off of it.
 

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Here is a link where I rehabed a couple of saws. On the handles I used BLO followed by a couple of coats of homemade wipe on poly. You can see the before and after pics and see what you think.

Wipe on poly is definitely not an original finish, but all my saws reside in an unheated machine shed and see a lot of dust/dirt so I wanted something that would clean easy.

Since you are not trying to restore a museum piece, you can pretty much finish it with whatever you want. I've seen people finish with BLO followed by shellac and wax, BLO and poly, BLO then shellac followed by lacquer and just BLO.

I'm not actually sure of the original finish on the handles. In fact it probably changed over time. I remember seeing old advertisements for Disston saws touting their "new weatherproof finish".
 

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A lot of guys would shoot me for saying so, but if I'm restoring a saw to be a user, I like to clean the handle thoroughly - sanding if necessary - and refinish with a gloss wipe on poly. I put on 4 coats, then buff with 0000 steel wool to knock down the gloss. Durable & has a great feel in your hand.

Conversely, I've got an open handled English carcase saw from the 1850's that I will not clean or sand, or refinish. All depends what your intentions are.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
If it didn't have the initials punched in it on both side and stamped into the blade, I probably would have left it alone. I'm not going to try to remove them because they are too deep. It also had some real dark spots around the edges that looked like rot, but I guess it was just dirt.

 

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Discussion Starter #20
Should I wax the blades?

I’m back to cleaning my handsaws and they’re not perfect, but will have to do.

I want to know if I should wax them to prevent them from rusting. I saw someplace that mineral oil was used and I’m not sure about how well that works. I'm also was curious of how hard it would be to remove the wax if I ever decide to try to get more rust off.

I still haven’t got to the handles, but I need to make that my next priority. Every time I have to wait for something, I end up on a whole other project.:shifty:
 
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