When I teach a woodworking class, I give my students free reign with my tools. It’s a great way for them to get a feel for tools that are sharp and in order. It’s also a great way to get a broken turning saw.
During the last few years, students have destroyed my turning saws at least three times by over-tensioning them. Even though I tell them: Do not touch the tensioning or you will have to touch my no-no square (a private joke).
So they crack the cheeks of my turning saws all the time, put the splintered mess on my bench and say something like: Good thing it’s wood so you can make another.
Today I started making a few turning saws and a bunch of replacement parts for some upcoming classes. I’m teaching a class on making these saws in Germany next month, and I really need a working turning saw. My band saw has been getting too much of the twisty sawing jobs lately.
So how do you build a turning saw without a turning saw? With your band saw.
My design uses the hardware from Tools for Working Wood and a design from the fan-blankety-tastic book “Antique Woodworking Tools” by David R. Russell. I’m using some really old mahogany from Midwest Woodworking.
As I was cutting some of the curves on the cheeks with my 40-year-old Delta 14” band saw, the motor spun to a stop. I checked the cord. No joy. After taking the whole thing apart, I found the motor’s thermal overload switch to be the culprit. It’s a 1/2 hp Craftsman AC motor from one of my grandfather’s machines and was made in 1940. I guess 73 years isn’t a bad run for an AC motor.
On my way to take the motor to the repair shop, I told Megan Fitzpatrick about it – my dang band saw crapped out while I was using it to make a turning saw to take work away from the band saw.
“Resistentialism” is all she replied.
Grrr. The woman has a mouth like a redheaded librarian pirate.
Look the word up if you must, but she’s right.
The good news is that my 73-year-old motor just needs some new parts and will be back in business next week. Its windings are in great shape.
— Christopher Schwarz
If you want to master your band saw, read the book that I read: “The New Complete Guide to the Band Saw” by Mark Duginske. It is all you really need.
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