Premium Backsaws: A History Lesson

Last year while I was teaching a sawing class in Michigan, one of the students brought along a dovetail saw he had purchased almost 10 years earlier but had never used. When I spied it on his workbench, I snatched it. It looked like the classic Lie-Nielsen Toolworks dovetail saw, but there was something...

Kenyon Backsaws and Handsaws for Sale Again

A sharp, balanced and well-set handsaw is the difference between avoiding handsawing and looking for excuses to pick up the tool. While it is noble to resuscitate vintage saws and put them back into working order (instead of painting pastoral scenes on them), not everyone is inclined to haunt flea markets and remove rust....

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In the Arms of the Angles (Rake, That Is)

Even if you care nothing for backsaws, I urge you to watch the video below to the sad, bitter end. And as you do, imagine Sarah McLachlan’s plaintive voice saying, “Won’t you help?” (To see the actual promo video for “Super-tune Your Backsaw with Matt Cianci,” visit ShopWoodworking.com.) — Megan Fitzpatrick

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Free Video of the Month – How to Use a Bench Hook

Christopher Schwarz begins this classic, free and highly necessary instructional video by saying, “If you have a backsaw, you need a bench hook.” Take a few minutes to watch and learn the following details on using this basic hand-tool jig: 1. Make accurate crosscuts 2. Use the bench hook fence properly for western backsaws...

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3-Legged Stool in 2 Days (or 1.5)

Bob Lang’s “Make a 3-Legged Stool” video shoot and class is moving along at breakneck speed – not because we need to rush through it, but because all the class participants are doing so well. Yesterday, Bob walked the nine students through the layout – which is in my opinion by far the trickiest...

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Eat Ice Cream, Build a Shaker Side Table

I’ll be at the Marc Adams School of Woodworking in Franklin, Ind., to teach “Make a Simple Shaker Side Table” on Sept. 21-22, and I plan to eat soft serve ice cream from Marc’s always-available supply for lunch both days. There are still a few open seats; I hope you’ll join me. The class...