A D-8 named Sawthra

The last saw to be complete from the pile o’ handles I refinished a while back was a 28″ Disston D-8. The plan was to make it a replacement for the 7 TPI D-7 that I’d been using for a rip saw.

When I first got the D-8, I was somewhat ecstatic. The blade was pretty clean, reasonably straight, and even had its etch. So all I needed to do was refinish the handle, clean off the blade, and sharpen. Easy, right?

Well, I got to sharpening, and about halfway through from the heel to toe, my file started to make strange noises and didn’t want to cut the metal. Huh. It turns out that there was a roughly 8-inch length where someone had done something unholy to the teeth. They were hard, very hard. We’re talking “breaks the teeth off your file” hard here.

I wasn’t going to let a saw make a monkey out of me, though, and managed to work through the hard metal. It seemed to go about 1/8″ deep into the blade. After this, I was tired. Very tired. I thought, well, maybe I should name this thing “Sawzilla,” but quick research indicated that it wasn’t a terribly original name. So here is Sawthra, named after the slightly more obscure Mothra:

disston_d8_sawthra

The Disston D-8 brings me to another thought I’d been having lately, namely, “wouldn’t it be great to have a brand-new D-8?” Then at Bagathon, I made a rather unusual deal with Larry that brought me this saw:

pax_no1

Notice anything familiar about this 24-inch Pax “No 1” panel saw? Like, maybe, that it’s a total copy of the Disston D-8, even down to the handle and the screw arrangement?

So I really do have a practically brand-new D-8 now. It makes sense, I suppose. The Flinn company tends to catch a lot of flak about its saws, in particular, that the handles aren’t as nice as century-old handles. But they do at least reproduce a true classic handsaw. The blade is taper-ground, for whatever that’s worth. Although I wouldn’t characterize the teeth on this thing as “sharp” (my little carcase saw currently cuts faster than this thing at the moment), they don’t look too bad, and probably need a little touch-up. I’ll wax the blade, like I always do.

The handle? Well, I’m not sure if I want to make a new one or not. To be honest, the handle isn’t that bad. But I always seem to end up making handles.

5 thoughts on “A D-8 named Sawthra

  1. Nice! But does it come with the two tiny, singing, priestesses that live in that box? Now that would be cool! I always had a crush on them…

  2. Very nice blog, I have recently purchased some good user Disston saws on e-bay, sharp and ready to go, cross cut and rip settings. I have built a version of Dan’s bench, yet to be posted on my blog, and really enjoy using them. Thanks for posting your work.

  3. Dan: Ha, I don’t know. Maybe my little backsaws can be the priestesses? Or do they have to be different tools, like marking gauges?

    Keep up the good work with your blog, I enjoy reading it.

  4. Hi Rick, yeah, using well-sharpened handsaws is really a treat. I like my Disstons, and as it turns out, the Winchester that I rehabbed a while ago is a real joy to use. I’ve been thinking about making some saw benches, too, but haven’t really gotten anywhere with that thought.

    I don’t think I’d seen much in your blog before, I’ll have to check it out.

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