How do I cut a 4x4 post?

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On Mar 17, 10:13�am, -...@-.com wrote:

And this is why Stanley, and others, used to make hand saw miter boxes with backsaws that had blades 30" long x 6" deep. Not many still around, and a decade or so ago when they could still be found, they were commanding very high prices...I seem to recall seeing one at around $350.
To get the same capacity, you need to go to a sliding compound miter saw with a 12" blade, if you insist on power. If you're used to using a handsaw, it's fairly easy to do freehand if you mark carefully and follow the marks. With the big Stanley, it's as easy as it gets. With an SCMS it is even easier, but you're looking at about $600 for the saw, and the blade that comes with it has a 50-50 chance of being aimed at the construction market, so you can earmark anywhere from $90 to $150 for a new blade. In truth, I think I'd pop for a decent handsaw at maybe $45.
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And this is why Stanley, and others, used to make hand saw miter boxes with backsaws that had blades 30" long x 6" deep. Not many still around, and a decade or so ago when they could still be found, they were commanding very high prices...I seem to recall seeing one at around $350.
To get the same capacity, you need to go to a sliding compound miter saw with a 12" blade, if you insist on power. If you're used to using a handsaw, it's fairly easy to do freehand if you mark carefully and follow the marks. With the big Stanley, it's as easy as it gets.
No operation with a hand saw is easy on pressure-treated lumber.
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wrote:

follow the marks. With the big Stanley, it's as easy as it gets. With an SCMS it is even easier, but you're looking at about $600 for the saw, and the blade that comes with it has a 50-50 chance of being aimed at the construction market, so you can earmark anywhere from $90 to $150 for a new blade. In truth, I think I'd pop for a decent handsaw at maybe $45.
Or a $14 Disston handsaw from Ebay, sharpened by Circle Saw (less than $10, I think $4), and then stone the side of the teeth to even the set, and you'll have a saw that is sharp and will stay in it's kerf. Sometimes a commercial sharpening will leave filings on the edges that need to be stoned off. It takes 2 or 3 minutes to do that. I have a 1950's Craftsman saw, 10 tpi, that is sharpened as a rip saw, that cuts cross cut or rip, just like Tage Frid said to do. It's the saw I pick up more than others.
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wrote:

Or buy a Festool Jig Saw. Great capacity and a very square cut.
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On Mar 16, 9:02?am, -...@-.com wrote:

Very easy, just use a circular saw. This one:
http://s119.photobucket.com/albums/o135/SVLightnin/?action=view&current=DSCN4664.jpg
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On Mar 16, 9:02?am, -...@-.com wrote:

Easy, just use a circular saw. This one:
http://s119.photobucket.com/albums/o135/SVLightnin/?action=view&current=DSCN4664.jpg
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So you've got a Sawzall, a circ saw, a mitre saw and a portable bandsaw, and you still can't cut 4 by 4. Are you George W Bush?
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Are you Tony Blair???
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On 16 Mar 2007 14:57:03 -0700, "Limey Lurker"

Yes I can very easily cut a 4x4. It's getting it square I'm having a problem with. Did you not read the original post? The miter saw isn't big enough. And though not posted the sawzall's blade will flex resulting in an uneven cut, possibley I'm trying to cut too fast. And the bandsaw I hadn't tried yet. But given that your assumptions weren't correct, I'd have to say that it is you that is GWB.
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wrote:

snip
I'm sure you've had every suggestion under the sun by now, but the way I do it is make one pass with circular saw guided by a speed square and finish the cut with a handsaw. Also, I might very well do it with a 10 tpi Disston crosscut handsaw. I put the post on a bench that is about 14" high. I stand over the post and let natural body mechanics guide the saw. My saw has good balanced set in the teeth and will stay in it's kerf if allowed to.
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wrote:

...putting the focus back on the 4X4 issue... You can probably do this on the miter saw by making a cut and then rotate the 4X4, line the blade up in the kerf from the first cut and make a second cut.
John
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On Sat, 17 Mar 2007 13:30:26 GMT, "John Grossbohlin"

John,
I'll have to double check, but I think the reason not being able to do it on the miter saw(this is from memory as the miter saw is at my father's) is that the 4x4 comes in contact with the blade before it even gets all the way back, ie there isn't enough room to slide the 4x4 under the blade. It's a smallish miter saw. But I'll double check.
I have 4 of these to do and I have to lop off 1 foot on each. So I'll have plenty of options to experiment.
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wrote:

Is it a 7 1/4" or 8" blade rather than a 10-12"? If so, would putting an auxiliary fence on the saw--to effectively move the fence out further on the table-- help?
To change the topic a bit... Are these 4X4s going to be used for posts outside for a fence of some sort? If so, I'd be inclined to cut them off at an angle that directs water away from the fence, or rails, or whatever is being attached to them. Doing so would probably complicate your cutting problem a bit but it's worth consideration.
John
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On Sat, 17 Mar 2007 19:15:19 GMT, "John Grossbohlin"
snip
John,
Hmm, moving it out away from the fence is a thought. I'll give that option a try as well.
From one of my other posts: these are for a bed frame not outdoor posts.
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On Sat, 17 Mar 2007 16:25:10 -0500, -@-.com wrote:

A good hand saw would be my choice then. With having to cut off a foot from each one experimenting and practicing cutting off a few inches till I had my technique down.
Mark (sixoneeight) = 618
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Just to reiterate because of a safety issue ... be sure to use, as John suggested, an auxiliary fence if you do. The piece being cut needs to be against a "fence" during the cut, even it is just a board between the saw fence and the workpiece.
--
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-@-.com wrote:

If you've got a work support or helper to hold up the other end, the band saw would be the easy way to do it.
Or get yourself a Japanese ryoba saw (that's ryob_a_ with an "a", a kind of hand saw, not the electric power tool maker that puts an "i" on the end) for about 40 bucks and with a little practice you'll be amazed at how fast and how accurately you're going through them. I wish I'd discovered Japanese saws 40 years ago.
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What size miter saw do you have? My low end Delta 10" will easily cut through a 4x4.
In any case, I'll second what another poster mentioned. Cut as far as you can with the miter saw, then flip it over, line it up, and complete the cut. I've used that approach to cut through 4x6's, 2x12's, and other larger boards.
Worst case, use a square to draw a line all the way around the post. Then use a fine tooth hand saw to cut through. If you take your time and keep the saw aligned with the line, you should end up with a nice square cut. Afterall, they cut big timbers like that for generations before power tools were invented.

I would think that would depend on the length of the 4x4 and how much you need to cut off the end. A long post would probably be hard to guide through the saw without angling it one way or the other.
Anthony
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wrote:

What I do - and I've cut untold amounts of 4x4 lumber this way - I simply mark all the way around the 4x4 and then cut as deep as the circular saw will cut, across one face. I line my blade up with the cut line rather than relying on the guide on the shoe. I flip it over and repeat the process. There is no reason you can't end up with a very well matched cut this way. I agree with you that the sawzall is not the best tool for this type of thing. The only thing you have to be careful of with this technique is to take your time and cut along the line - don't let the saw wander. It's really a whole bunch easier than you're making it.
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On Fri, 16 Mar 2007 08:02:12 -0500, -@-.com wrote:

Build a "U" jig and use the circular saw.
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