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Tell me you didn’t stop to read this entry thinking there might be some YouTube video on how to cut lasagna (actually there is a video, but it’s not worth the trip to view it).  Or did you expect to see a guy take a slab of frozen lasagna and divvy it up via a few cuts at a band saw. No, it’s not that at all. Well, not entirely.

Press releases are delivered to us almost daily. Most are worthy of reading; a few are not. Late last week a release came through that caught my attention. It was PR from Forrest Manufacturing; makers of Woodworker I and Woodworker II saw blades.

The release discusses the company’s ability to design and make custom saw blades , that’s something most high-volume competitors cannot do. Forrest can work in lots as small as a single blade. That’s nice to know if you ever have a need for a special blade made and although you may think that doesn’t happen, I can attest to purchasing a custom-made set of router bits. Could a custom saw blade be far behind?

Examples of Forrest’s design capabilities are blades made to cut plastic extrusions, solid rocket fuel while under water, paint brush bristles and a 20″- diameter, 20-tooth saw blade that was designed to cut 6″-thick, gummy material similar to automotive bumpers , it’s referred to as an  “ugly blade” by vice president, Jay Forrest.

And, as you might expect from the title of this entry, Forrest has designed and created a saw blade to cut lasagna. (Finally, there’s the connection.) “It was similar to designing for a plastics extrusion line,” explains Jay Forrest.  “The lasagna has to be cut to the length of the package it’s put in.”

I was so hoping a photo could be pulled from the company archives. No luck. The closest I could get was a photo of a Forrest Thin Rim blade. The actual lasagna blade was a version of this design.

While I don’t remember any food-related product being cut in my shop, I do remember countless times that turkeys and hams were trimmed on Dad’s band saw. If the bird is frozen, the cut is near perfect.

So what (other than wood) have you cut on your woodworking machines? No appendages, please.

– Glen D. Huey

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Showing 6 comments
  • John Hanlon

    We order bulk quantities of smoked and dried cow ears for the dog. But usually they’re too big so I cut them down to size on the band saw. All that’s left is some fine white powder and no odor. Works like a charm and now my wife understands why I needed the new saw!

  • Jerry

    On the compound miter saw, vinyl siding, aluminum down spout and gutter, tried cutting something rubbery once but that didn’t work out so good.

  • David

    No edible products, but some of your readers may be interested to know that aluminum and brass can be very effectively shaped by carbide router bits. The trick is to take incredibly small bites – around 5 thousandths or so; any more and the router bit’s carbide can delaminate and shatter. But it certainly beats taking the work to a mchine shop and paying big bucks to have it done on a milling machine if you’ve got a brass table edge that needs profiling.

  • dave brown

    I’ve used my bandsaw to cut lexan, aluminum and ABS plastic. When I needed to cut a rawhide chew-toy for my dogs in half, the bandsaw was there for me. My bandsaw has also been used to put square shoulders on skateboard wheels destined to be rollers on a baby gate. I’ve put a metal cutting abrasive blade on my circular saw to cut various metals. Sadly, I’ve never used my woodworking tools to cut edible products.

  • Paul Kierstead

    Like Bob, I tried the frozen fish cut on a bandsaw, though in my case it was frozen smoked salmon. I won’t say the smell was horrid, but you *definitely* knew the saw had been used to cut fish.

  • Bob Lang

    I used to buy frozen fish in two-pound blocks, more than we needed for a single meal. A good deal, but if you thawed the whole block you had to have fish for dinner two days in a row. So I decided to cut the frozen block in half on the band saw.

    Worked great, but when I turned on the saw a few days later it was quite an odoriferous experience. Sometimes hand tools are better.

    Bob Lang

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