Recommendations on handsaw for dovetails?

I'm interested in a handsaw for making small dovetails for boxes and similar projects. I just watched Ron Cosman's first video on the subject and his recommendation of the Lie-Nielsen saw is persuasive if it's true that many other brands are not ready to use out of the box, is his advice on that reasonable or should it be taken with a grain of salt due to commerical considerations? Any recommendations?
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| I'm interested in a handsaw for making small dovetails for boxes and similar | projects. I just watched Ron Cosman's first video on the subject and his | recommendation of the Lie-Nielsen saw is persuasive if it's true that many | other brands are not ready to use out of the box, is his advice on that | reasonable or should it be taken with a grain of salt due to commerical | considerations? Any recommendations?
I use an L-N saw and do very small dovetails on a regular basis in stock about 1/4" thick... the pins are a saw kerf wide at the thin end and 1/8" at the fat end. The L-N saw will do this right out of the box. After looking at a lot of different options I ordered six more L-N saws for use when I teach dovetailing classes at my club.
After doing these kinds of tiny dovetails cutting them in 3/4" stock with fatter pins is a breeze!
John
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http://www.adriatools.com /
Adria dovetail saw works perfectly if you want a western style saw.
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On Thu, 17 Apr 2008 13:12:15 -0700, DGDevin wrote:

I prefer a quality dozuki saw. Typically half the kerf of the one you mentioned.
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DGDevin wrote:

I've been researching this myself, so I know of a few different ones. In the western saws there are the "big names" and then everyone else. It certainly used to be true that L-N was one of the few usable saws out of the box, but there are now more choices.
L-N makes a good saw. For a bit more you can get it with progressive pitch--that is, the teeth are fine at the toe for easy starting, and get bigger at the heel to cut faster. Apparently this takes a bit of getting used to, but leads to faster cuts.
"Tools for Working Wood" sells a dovetail saw under the Grammercy label. It's got a different design, being lighter and smaller than most of the others. Some like it, some think the handle is too skinny.
Many people think Wenzloff & Sons make some of the best saws out there. They've got two stock versions of dovetail saws (available at Lee Valley and The Best Things but they're both backordered), and you can put your name on the list for a custom one...but the wait time is around 5 months before it gets started.
There are other premium saw makers out there too...Adria is one, "Ed in Oakville" on the Canadian Woodworking forums is another, and I'm sure there are others. Most of them involve some waiting.
Lastly, there are any number of japanese-style dozukis that will do the job. For faster cuts, look for one with rip teeth.
Chris
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I've been hearing good things about this saw. I'm especially interested in the kit[1] version, where you make your own handle for it. There's a current thread about this saw at Sawmill Creek[2] with pictures from someone that's just put one together.

Woodcraft has one that goes on sale frequently for about $30 called the Dozuki "Z"[3]. I've got one and have had good luck with it doing dovetails.
[1]: http://www.toolsforworkingwood.com/Merchant/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Store_Code=toolshop&Product_Code=GT-DKIT.XX&Category_Code=TMQ [2]: http://www.sawmillcreek.org/showthread.php?t 278 [3]: http://www.woodcraft.com/family.aspx?familyid 0
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DGDevin wrote:

Other guys in here will have different opinions, but I like the saw here: http://www.leevalley.com/wood/page.aspx?c=1&pY416&cat=1,42884
It's not expensive, and it cuts along the lines nicely. This one was ready out of the box and I'd buy another.
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On Thu, 17 Apr 2008 13:12:15 -0700, "DGDevin"

I have tried several saws for cutting dovetails, including a hacksaw. I have been using a Craftsman (!) dovetail saw which does a very good job. A bandsaw does a great job on the tails. But the most important tool is "skill." If you are cutting blind dovetails, get a skew chisel. It works much better than a pen knife.
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DGDevin wrote:

I've used $50-60 Dozuki's, cheap no-name saws, a Zona, and the LN rip and crosscut dovetail saws.
I like the LN best for "normal" furniture hand work. The Zona, made here in Connecticut and sold in hobby shops that sell model building supplies, cuts VERY well and is excellent for smaller parts. The shocker is that it costs less than $10! You may find the Zona is all you need. Be aware that X-Acto saws look like Zona saws. The comparison is apples to oranges.
Mario Roderiguez used to teach a class where a no-name $20 saw from Woodcraft was "detoothed", refiled, and reset as part of the class.
Try a Zona. If you don't have a decent hobby shop nearby, these guys sell 'em online: <http://www3.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin/wti0001p?&I=LXLH60
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I've used X-Acto razor saws for small dovetails. They work fine provided you don't let the blade get bent. At under $5.00, you can't beat the price.

That's actually a good saw once you stone back most of the set to help it cut easier and with less wandering. File the teeth rip if you like, with whatever relief angle works best for you. Nice, thin kerf dovetail saw for not much money.

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I have the lie-nielsen saws bith crosscut and rip. I swear by them for and type precision work like a dovetail
Randy http://nokeswoodworks.com
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wrote:

I have the lie-nielsen saws bith crosscut and rip. I swear by them for and type precision work like a dovetail
Randy http://nokeswoodworks.com
Me too! AMOF I have the LN dovetail and both carcass saws.
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Take a look at a "Silky" saw, if you google silky you will find them. The folding gomboy made for bamboo has fine impulse hardened teeth and will last a very long time cutting pins and tails. It folds keeping it from harm when not in use. I have several.
Daily Grind Sharpening Service
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Thanks to everyone for the opinions and advice, gave me lots to think about before putting in an order with Lee Valley. I spread some money around between a reasonable-priced saw, some good chisels and a few measuring and marking gadgets to make it easier to get those pins and tails to appear where I want them to be. Now it's time to dig through the scrap bin and practice, practice practice! I predict by this time next year my friends and relations will be sick of small wooden boxes as gifts.... ;~)
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| Thanks to everyone for the opinions and advice, gave me lots to think about | before putting in an order with Lee Valley. I spread some money around | between a reasonable-priced saw, some good chisels and a few measuring and | marking gadgets to make it easier to get those pins and tails to appear | where I want them to be. Now it's time to dig through the scrap bin and | practice, practice practice! I predict by this time next year my friends | and relations will be sick of small wooden boxes as gifts.... ;~)
Re the gift thing... it happens. Though I find that a lot of my female associates like my boxes so there is always someone to give them to... charity auctions and charity dinner raffles eat up quite a few too. The hard part with the charity auctions is that the boxes sometimes don't sell for much as people have no idea what they took to make. An pro associate of mine has taken to putting a reserve on his items with the stipulation that if the item doesn't meet the reserve he will buy it for the reserve.
John
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On Sat, 19 Apr 2008 23:02:29 -0700, DGDevin wrote:

Take a look at your library or pick up a copy of..
400 Wood Boxes: The Fine Art of Containment & Concealment
or any of the box books by Doug Stowe.
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Joe wrote:

I have two so far, both gifts from the Mrs., Popular Woodworking's Box By Box, and Wood magazine's Making Great Boxes. I'll keep an eye out for the ones you mention, thanks.
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