The Fourth Post in the Trilogy, Frame Saws: Before They Were Cool

Final assembly, or “the moment of truth” were one to be dramatic, was more marred by wrangling knots out of the cord than anything else. A granny knot at one end, a bit of wrapping, granny with a half-hitch to cinch off the other end and the torsion cord is wrapped. In both cases the paddles slipped in with no flaw and were wound up to tension. Each saw was given a few strokes to ensure proper handling and operation then the tension was let off and they’ve been awaiting the call to duty.


I did take a little extra effort to break the arrisses with block plane or chisel, depending on what kind of space I had to work in and if I expect to touch wood in those places. I’d like to say I was very diligent in removing tool marks and finessed a smooth finish on every face. I wouldn’t say those things, though, as I didn’t bother. Tear-out, saw marks, chisel gouges… their presence or absence doesn’t affect the utility of the tool, so I have not given Venus her due with these frame saws.


Overall, this was not at all a bad day of wood working. There is no finish on either of these (except what shellac might still be hiding in the pores) and no decoration. I don’t see the need. The original inspiration is certainly rectangular with no apparent decoration or curved braces with smooth transitions. I am considering doing some low relief carving on one, just to see how it handles. I may or may not oil these in the near future. If I do, I might actually go with beef fat rather than linseed or walnut oil. The latter cost money while the former is a by-product of dinner. In the meantime, leaving them “unfinished” really isn’t going to do them harm. Until called to action, they quietly reside assembled but un-tensioned in a corner where I am storing my tools. They’ll be relocated when I get a tool chest built. But, that’ll be another series of posts.

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