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Thread: Changing PPI on a saw

  1. #1
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    Changing PPI on a saw

    I've got a garage sale D8 thats about 7 ppi xcut right now, I want to change it to 5 ppi rip. I've been trying to file away the teeth and am strting to think I either have crappy files or the saw metal is too hard. This is my first time at this so it may be working fine and I'm worrying for nothing. Any advice or ideas?

  2. #2
    Bit late but 5 point rip saws are pretty common. A new mill file should get the existing teeth of pretty quickly though.

  3. #3
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    In his video on sharpening Herman uses a metal saw jointer to level teeth. The jointer simply holds a mill file perpendicular to the teeth making it easy to take all the teeth down nice & level. Herman mentions using a simpler block of wood to achieve the same result. Tools for Working Wood- Gramercy sells mill files for this work. The files used to shape & sharpen teeth are not meant for this work.

  4. #4
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    Ditto to above, big mill file. If you need to, cut a groove in a scrap of 4/4 material that's a snug fit for the file so you can keep the file close to 90 degrees from the plate. Have a couple of files on hand to cut the teeth you want, and mark and start them with something that's easy to move on the teeth, like a file with a little wear on the corner.

    I've found it easier when cutting teeth to put a paper template on the saw plate and tape it down to start the teeth - the paper is enough of a barrier that you can start with a sharp file and not a hacksaw or a dull file.

    Make yourself a guide block to put the end of the file in to ensure that your rake is consistent.
    Last edited by David Weaver; 01-27-2012 at 10:45 AM.
    Unleaded tastes a little tangy, supreme is kinda sour, and diesel tastes pretty good.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by David Weaver View Post
    I've found it easier when cutting teeth to put a paper template on the saw plate and tape it down to start the teeth - the paper is enough of a barrier that you can start with a sharp file and not a hacksaw or a dull file.
    That's good idea, right there.

    +1 on jointing to flat, first. Otherwise, you'll have little "baby teeth" in the gullets.

  6. #6
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    I personally would get someone to punch the teeth for $15 or whatever if you could find someone to do it.

    But I gather that's not the point here.

    For the OP, if this is going to be a rip saw and you're not using a tooth puncher, take this opportunity to do what was done on the old saws - make the first 5 or 6 inches or so of the saw progress from something along the lines of 7 teeth per inch down to 5. It makes for a nicer saw to use, easier to start, and those front 5 inches or so of teeth don't do any heavy work, anyway.
    Unleaded tastes a little tangy, supreme is kinda sour, and diesel tastes pretty good.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by David Weaver View Post
    Ditto to above, big mill file. If you need to, cut a groove in a scrap of 4/4 material that's a snug fit for the file so you can keep the file close to 60 degrees from the plate. Have a couple of files on hand to cut the teeth you want, and mark and start them with something that's easy to move on the teeth, like a file with a little wear on the corner.

    I've found it easier when cutting teeth to put a paper template on the saw plate and tape it down to start the teeth - the paper is enough of a barrier that you can start with a sharp file and not a hacksaw or a dull file.

    Make yourself a guide block to put the end of the file in to ensure that your rake is consistent.


    I think you mean 90 degrees to the plate?

  8. #8
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    Thanks guys - I'll let you know how it turns out.

    On another note, does anyone know what options there are if I wanted to find something to punch the teeth? The only thing I know of are the old foley machines.

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    Yes, 90 degrees. I must've missed the 9 on the keypad. Fixed in the original post.
    Unleaded tastes a little tangy, supreme is kinda sour, and diesel tastes pretty good.

  10. #10
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    Aside from trying to make something of your own to punch teeth (nowhere close to worthwhile for one saw), your best option is to find someone with a foley who doesn't charge a lot.
    Unleaded tastes a little tangy, supreme is kinda sour, and diesel tastes pretty good.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sean Richards View Post
    Bit late but 5 point rip saws are pretty common. A new mill file should get the existing teeth of pretty quickly though.
    Ditto that. Heck, I'd of bought it from you for more than enough to buy a rip.

    Maybe it's just me, but I almost never see a vintage xcut less than 10 ppi.
    My 8ppi D8 is my most-used western xcut saw because it's so much faster than the finer ones I have, and I'd like to find a 6! I may recut one of the others.

    BTW, I wouldn't spend my money on a jointer, a square block of wood with a groove the thickness of the file will do it.
    Last edited by James Carmichael; 01-27-2012 at 12:06 PM. Reason: addition

  12. #12
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    David, do you know of any information about making your own saw punch? It's something I've never seen anywhere and the information would be very interesting to read.

    I think it would be awesome to have something like that floating around the creek - sort of like the "try out a tool" mailing lists, but more of a "here's the tools to make your own saw" package being sent from person to person.

  13. #13
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    Shaun,

    I think it would be a tremendous amount of work to build a saw punch that did a decent job. Easier to find someone with a Foley setup and send the saw to them I would think. There are people out there that will sell you new saw stock cut and punched to spec for building dovetail and back saws. I imagine that they can get thicker stock if you were to build your own panel saw. But at the end of the day if your time equates to money or you wish to spend your time working wood, it is cheaper to buy a new one from one of the master saw smiths out there today, or buy a refurbished one from some of the excellent saw doctors. The difference that a superior sharpening makes on the cutting ability must be seen to be believed. Even a mediocre saw with an excellently sharpened blade will perform well, however the higher quality saws will perform better and last longer between sharpenings.
    Erik

    People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf. ~ Geo. Orwell

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