This past weekend I was able to
go back to Roy Underhill’s
Woodwright’s School in Pittsboro,
North Carolina. This time I took a saw sharpening class and
a joinery planes class.
Since I survived the two days I
thought I would write a few lines about the experience.
Hand saw sharpening class with
Bill Anderson. I have been trying to improve my saw
sharpening skills lately but was not really great at it. In
the class Bill covered the types of saw teeth and basic
geometry of tooth shaping and sharpening, he broke down the
sharpening process and explained it well. He also had
several types of saw sets and explained the pluses and
minuses of the different types.
Before we started sharpening
everyone had to make ten strokes with there saws on a test
board for use as a comparison after we sharpened our saw. We
worked on rip saws first, I took an old Disston no.7 that
was well used and abused. Bill turned us loose, what lovely
music it is to here a gang of fellas filing on old steel.
With Bills guidance the saw sharpened up great, it cut way
past the cut first cut on the test board.
After lunch we moved on to
cross cut saws. I took an old Atkins I had bought when I was
a kid. It was a real dog of a saw, after some pretty hard
filing it came around as well. Bill is a wonderful teacher.
I think someone who is not even interested in sharpening
would enjoy this class. You learn how a saw works and how to
fix one that doesn’t.
To give you an idea of what we
learned, I took the two worst saws I owned and came home
with the two best. I think everyone else took home much
better cutting saws than they came with too. We also got a
lesson from Roy on playing the saw; what more could you want
to know about a saw?