Why You Should Own A Handsaw

While I would not want to cut boards all day with a hand saw when a circular saw works so well.  However there are just some cuts you cannot do with a round saw blade.  In the case you see here I was cutting off deck boards even and the circular saw I was using could only get so close to the house.  I pulled out my pull saw and finished up the cut in short order.  I have used this saw so many times for inside corner cuts on plywood.  This saw basically has a disposable blade in that it is hardened so it will last a fairly long time, but it cannot be sharpened due to that hardening.  Since it costs less that $20 I consider it a good buy.

I would love to have a good set of hand saws, but you really need to know how to sharpen them for them to be useful.  Further they are expensive, starting around $100 and going beyond $200.  Then you need a saw tooth set, some files and the skills to use them.  I still remember Mr. Kruger from 7th grade wood shop class with his well-sharpened hand saws.  Using them gave me a feel of the wood that no power saw has ever done.  And while I do most of my cutting with a power saw that time cutting with hand saws gave me an understanding of the grain of wood that still is with me today.

I’ve considered trying to make my own saw.  I’ve read about it in that you can use a file, and a saw set, to cut teeth in a thin piece of metal.  You need to add a back to stiffen it up, but it would be just as much a learning experience as anything.  For a few dollars in materials you can learn.  If that works out I would have the confidence to try it on a real, valuable saw.