I just started working on a new project in which
I will build a stair saw based on an old Disston Stair saw
loaned to me by Buckaroo.
I drew up the profile and made myself a temple
of the handle. I also took the time to draw up a profile of the
saw plate and get it's measurements down.
I used a caliper to measure the thickness of
the sawplate and was sort of surprised to find that it was
But I guess this would stand to reason since you
would want a stiff saw plate for cuts where it was extended
away from the handle.
Before really digging into the building
process, I like to get all the raw material together and cut
to rough size. Tonight I started on the saw plate.
I dug through my pile of spring steel and
located some that I had already "de-blued". While it is easy
to remove the bluing via a citric acid bath, that's one step
I didn't have to do this time.
I coated the steel with some dye chem
(notice the protective surface I'm working on?) and then
pretty much traced the original saw plate. As far as cutting
the spring steel to shape, here's the process I've been
describing in my recent write ups.
I realize that there
are many ways to accomplish this task. But here's the way I
I use a Dremel equipped with an abrasive
disk to cut along the scribed line. I cut along the line,
being careful not to linger in one place too long, and not
to go all the way through. My goal is to score the surface
just enough to enable me to snap it at the cut line.
I then take the work piece and install it in
my vise. I clamp it in place so that the scored line is
right at the top edge of the vise jaws.
Then it is a simple matter to bend the work
piece and the spring steel should break right along that
Notice that in this photo I'm doing
something rather stupid. I'm NOT wearing gloves! And I
wonder why I get metal splinters! In the next cut you'll see
that I finally wised up.