Sunday, January 5, 2014

More Saw Handle Scans

Happy New Year, everyone! In celebration of me leaving my camera at work - with all the photos I meant to start posting over the weekend, here is a post unrelated to anything I am currently doing. I actually have been meaning to get these scanned and put up long ago, but you know how it goes.

The Mother Lode

A while back I went nutso on British eBay, and wound up with a huge stash of old tools.  Some fantastic ones, some not so great.  I found out that when buying backsaws on eBay, the phrase, "just needs sharpening to be put back to work" means something completely different to me than it does to most sellers.

All kidding aside, once you win the bid, there really is no way to know what you'll get until it shows up.  My advice:  don't bid much.  I think I got all (or most) of these saws for around ten pounds each including shipping (to a local UK address - thanks Travis!).

My intent is to add to the online archive of scanned saw handles for posterity's sake.  Feel free to use them as a pattern for making your own saw handles.  Check out some other saw handles here.  When you print them out, the grid lines are exactly one inch squares on the actual handles.  The beauty of computers is this makes it simple to enlarge or reduce the images in size for the exact size you need.

I would love if any readers were able to provide any further information about these saws in the comments.

The first is a fairly unremarkable handle, whose best virtue is the ease in which it can be mass produced.  I thought it was a Spears & Jackson, but there is no evidence on the saw to indicate that.  The medallion says, "Warrented Superior."   Perhaps someone is into restoring old saws for the sake of historical accuracy.  However, the saw has a nice, hefty steel back, and a sawplate that is dead straight.  This is a good candidate for rehab.

10" rip, 14 PPI
The next saw is indeed a Spear & Jackson, with a Leapfrog logo.  I think this was probably a good saw that wasn't top-of-the-line.  A heavy brass back and a handle painted black.  This is a decent sized tenon saw, and the handle fits my hand better with a four finger grip.

14" rip, 12 PPI
This next saw is one of my favorites from the group.  The steel back says "I. Sorby, Sheffield," and has the outline of a jester.  No idea when this saw was made, but it does have split nuts.  Another easy rehab.

10" rip, 16 PPI
The next saw could be the poster child from the upcoming TV special, "Fun With Wire Brushes."  The heavy brass back says, "G. H. Charlesworth, Sheffield, England."  This saw has a nice feel, but I suspect it is a replacement handle.  Regardless, the sawplate is straight and I might try to save it.

12" crosscut, 12 PPI with lots of cows and calfs
This last one is my favorite.  It has a medium weight steel back, split nuts and a massive hang angle.  It is stamped, "I. Colbeck."  It appears to be very old, but unfortunately also starred in the abovementiond upcoming docu-drama.
12 1/2" rip, 12 1/2 PPI
Enjoy! If you use any of these scans, please leave a comment and let us know your plans!


  1. I tried a trick for removing rust using just vinegar. It worked amazingly well. I only did it with some plane irons, but I saa a blog of someone performing the same trick on a saw. You get one of those rubber boot parking mats, they can hold a saw blade even for a large ripping saw. Then you put the blade in and fill up woth vinegar. Leave it overnight ans rinse of. If it is normal iron, there wont be much visible difference, but on steel, a black deposit will form on the steel.
    I suppose it will remove an insignificant amount of carbon from the outer layer of the steel, but at least for my plane irons I haven't had any problems in regard to keeping an edge.
    The black deposit can be cleaned of with a Scotch Brite pad or similar.
    I like the second Spears & Jackson (the black painted handle). It looks good.
    Have fun bringing them back to life.

    1. My rust-removal du jour is citric acid, known as Zitronensäure here in the land of the Deutsch. Sounds like it works about the same. Slow and steady.

      The second black painted saw is a cool one. I think I'll be able to rehab that saw and it should be a good worker.

  2. I just remembered the quote you wrote from Ron Herman: Slow is steady and steady is fast.
    Actually I have an old cross cut saw at home that I have been meaning to rehab for about 8 years (or something along those lines). I think I'll give it a try when I get home.

  3. Thanks for posting these scans Brian. I especially like the second one.