Bowsaw frame

Is the spreader bar hinged in a bowsaw frame? A rigidly glued tenon doesn't seem very efficient in tensioning the blade. Does it work well that way?
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MikeWhy wrote:

The tenon is not glued at all, the ends are free to pivot and tension comes from a turnbuckle or Spanish windlass.
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It makes much more sense that way. Is there any benefit from curving or relieving the shoulder to match? I could pin the tenon with a brass peg as a hinge. Am I over designing this thing?
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MikeWhy wrote:

Probably. Have you checked out http://www.geocities.com/plybench/bowsaw.html ?
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MikeWhy wrote:

The spreader bar is connected to the uprights of the frame with a "NON-GLUED" mortise and tenon joint. The whole thing is held together with the tensioning string/rope/wire.
Deb
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"Dr. Deb" wrote:

A question:
As a kid, my dad described a one man saw with a frame and a 24"-30" long blade as a "Buck Saw", used primarily used with a cross buck to cut up brush from fallen trees.
Had a turn buckle arrangement inside the frame to tension the blade.
Is that the same as what you are describing as a "bowsaw"?
Lew
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Yes, it's very similar. There are also modern incarnations with steel frames, mostly sold to cut green timber. The major difference would be in the cut of the blade, and secondarily in the lightness of the frame.
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"MikeWhy" wrote:

Thank you.
A couple of hours with that saw was more of a workout than high school football practice<grin>.
Lew
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Lew Hodgett wrote:

That sounds like a bowsaw. I have what my dad and uncles called a "one man" or a "crosscut" hanging on the wall of the shop. The blade is 40" long and looks like this one: http://www.traditionalwoodworker.com/product_info.php/products_id/3604 except that mine has only one handle.
I also have an ancient bowsaw or "buck saw" as you describe. These were early variants on what we today call a chain saw. :-)
    mahalo,     jo4hn
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"jo4hn" wrote:

Also had one of those beasts.
If you moved the stick handle to the forward end of the saw, made a half assed, poor man's, 2 man cross cut.
Either way, there was a lot of work associated with it.
Lew
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Thanks. The 15" blades sound like what I'm after, though still a bit coarse. I think I'll try refiling a crosscut for rip and see. The $110 asking price for the saw is just simply nuts for 3 sticks and a bit of hardware.
(The Stanley miter box blades are hardened, and likely not suitable.)
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MikeWhy wrote:

How about the tiny little Gramercy bowsaw for $139?
http://tinyurl.com/3zu53q
It got good reviews though. (And the hardware kit is much less expensive if you can do the wood bits yourself.)
Chris
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MikeWhy wrote:

I saw these guys at a local antique tool show. Bet you can't make one for less. Did not try them but looked very sturdy. http://stores.ebay.com/CME-Handworks-Inc
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Jim Harvey wrote:

I don't think mine cost me more than $5 ($53.75 less, to be exact).
Of course, I didn't use any exotic woods, and my tensioner is a loop of parachute suspension line instead of sailmaker's cord. The design was inspired by a photo of a bow saw made in the 13th century.
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Morris Dovey wrote:

Took a quick snapshot of the prototype in the shop this morning and posted it to ABPW. 24" (+/-) of 1x6 and a little less than 24" of 1x4.
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$60 is fair if I count my time along with the blade, hardware, and wood scraps. (On clearer thinking, a simple straight shoulder is adequate and appropriate at the spreader joint. The blade holder length should be adjusted to allow a square fit when tensioned.)
But that's all just water under the bridge now. I spent the evening filing saws and squinting at the saw set. And after all that, can you guess which saw cuts the best, by a huge margin? It was the 10 year old $10 Vaughn Bear Saw (Americanized ryoba). I see online that they go for $20 to $25 these days. With no exaggeration, two gentle 10" strokes across the end grain shot right past the gauge line in 3/4" hard maple. No chattering, no hesitation on the start, and left a clean straight kerf with no hunting. It's the one saw I didn't tune. :D I'm calling it quits, and laying in a lifetime supply of the plastic stuff tomorrow. Sorry for the noise. (It's a Vaughn Bear Saw BS250D. Lowes has it for $20. It's worth a try if you're still hunting for the perfect dovetail *and* tenon saw.)
(Now, who has advice on Japanese dovetail chisels? The Tools for Woodworking catalog came last week. Not that the old Buck butt chisels aren't doing the job. I just don't know whether tonight's message was "old, tried and true is good", or "Jap cutlery rocks."
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