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Saw kit feedback requested - Blacky's Boy - 08-16-2015

Mike (the other half of TGIAG) and I were talking today about offering saw kits. These would include a spine, saw nuts, a medallion, and a wooden handle. Now the wooden handle would be cut to the overall shape of the finished one but be missing the holes for the hardware as well as the final carving that makes the handle comfortable to use. But we're thinking of making the cut for the saw plate (since we have a set up for that)

We were going to start with some small saw first. You know, a dovetail or maybe 12" tenon saw. The handles would be cherry or walnut. Depending on what we could get flat or quarter sawn. They would also be CNC cut to overall shape. (There is NO way we'd NOT loose money if we did them by hand!)

The game plan would be that (since we know what handle pattern is used) the saw plates would feature the drilled holes.

So let's talk about what size kit you'd like to see offered. 10" dovetail? 12" Carcass saw? 14" Tenon or Sash saw? What handle pattern? I'm favoring the Disston D-4 handles because of the lines. They are simpler and will work better with a CNC set up (at least I think so).

Re: Saw kit feedback requested - Mike Brady - 08-16-2015

You are onto something with this idea. What you are proposing takes much of the trouble with sawmaking away.

Re: Saw kit feedback requested - Gregory of Sherwood Forest - 08-16-2015

Wow, I love the idea.

If I hadn't already invested in all the tooling for cutting the plates, holes, etc, then I would be in the market for just such an offering. I know you'll have customers for it, not sure of how many and the cost will be a factor, of course.

I really like the way you TGIAG dudes think!

Re: Saw kit feedback requested - TobyC - 08-16-2015

You may need to offer small medium and large handles, and thicknesses.

Re: Saw kit feedback requested - DaveParkis - 08-16-2015

I suspect the dovetail saw would be most popular and my personal preference would be for the open handle style tote. I think Toby is onto something with the different size totes.

Re: Saw kit feedback requested - hbmcc - 08-17-2015

Simple: Everything but the screw driver....

Nah, just make the slots and drilled holes work. Even with crappy drill press and bits, and slotting saw (Jap. pull) it was a nightmare to do that part of my Gramercy. Enough to send me to finished saws. The rest is a lesson in patience. Perseverance. Dedication. Stubborn commitment. That is if the shaping tool is a cheap 4-in-1. Or, dowel and sandpaper.

How much work is it to make 2 or three kits? The basic backsaws?

Re: Saw kit feedback requested - Scott W - 08-17-2015

14 or 16 inch tenon.

Re: Saw kit feedback requested - RonB1957 - 08-17-2015

I would have to agree with Toby on the sizing. A med., Reg., and Large would be the minimum, I think. But would cover most.
I considered this about a year or so ago. But not with a production type of handle. The Diston D4 was pretty much made to be a production handle as well as many others at the time. Industrial revolution, human production lines, etc. So a minimal 3 axis CNC would work leaving rounded corners etc. leaving the buyer to do very little in the way of shaping. A standardized plate/ bolt lay out is easy enough to fabricate templates for or just set up a CNC boring machine/ mill. Are you planning to do the counter boring as well? That adds another process. A folded back is a universal fit, of course. So nothing to do there except sand it and set it. The dovetail, carcass, and sash saw are the most commonly bought. So three saws, three different sizes. 9 programs, if that many, for the most part. You can always add more saws/ handles down the road. The shaping, sanding, finishing, and sharpening are perhaps the most time consuming aspect of the saws. So you are saving much in terms of time/ labor. I would guess you are planning to "Pre fab" handles in batches since you are limiting yourself to just two types of wood. Ready to grab and ship. Another production line time and cost saver.
I think if you have the means why not go for it. It is ultimately a good way for some one to piece together a basic saw and say they made it. Without actually having gone through the time and trouble to learn how. Hopefully they will at least learn how to sharpen it.

Saw making is not rocket science. But there are those little gremlins that like to pop up and bite from time to time.

The three Ps. Pick a handle, Pick a wood, Pick a size. We'll send the parts, you do the rest. Best of luck.

Re: Saw kit feedback requested - RonB1957 - 08-17-2015

Must have clicked a button twice. Deleted the repeat post.

Re: Saw kit feedback requested - PaulC - 08-17-2015

Sign me up. the D4 is all right. If I were buying/making custom saws for myself, I'd probably want a matched set(DT, Carcase, Tenon). Even if the plates weren't tapered, I'd sure like a panel saw option as well.