How-To: Restore a Vintage Saw

How-To: Restore a Vintage Saw

Make: Projects contributor Josh Burroughs has posted an excellent handsaw restoration how-to. Why bother to take the time to restore an old, rusty saw? Josh explains:

Modern saws found at the big box home centers usually have induction hardened teeth that can’t be sharpened – they are meant to be thrown away when dull. They also have thick heavy blades, blocky plastic handles and teeth that seem to be engineered to do a bad job at both rip and cross cuts. They are really designed and marketed towards users who won’t bother to learn how to saw properly and can’t be bothered to maintain their tools.

Vintage saws from the turn of the last century are literally the tools that built the U.S. These are tools that were made for skilled craftsmen to use and care for. They are fully user serviceable and with the right set of files can be easily converted or tweaked to any use you have for them. With a little patience and practice to learn proper sawing technique, using a quality handsaw can actually be much faster than setting up a power saw for many types of cuts, not to mention safer, cleaner, and quieter.

Restore a Vintage Handsaw for Everyday Use (Make: Projects)

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Gareth Branwyn is a freelance writer and the former Editorial Director of Maker Media. He is the author or editor of over a dozen books on technology, DIY, and geek culture. He is currently a contributor to Boing Boing, Wink Books, and Wink Fun. His free weekly-ish maker tips newsletter can be found at

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