Practical Carriage Building

Compiled by M.T. Richardson, Vol.1. 1891

Saws, Bits, and Gouges

Saws next claim attention. These, no matter whether hack or otherwise, should be in good order. For the body maker, large saws are of less value than formerly; but a good, large cross-cut and a rip saw should be included in every kit. The cross-cut should have about eight teeth to the inch, the rip about seven. The cross-cut should be filed with teeth having about one-thirty-second inch dip and a cross angle of forty degrees. The rip should have the face of tooth at right angles with the face line of the points, and file straight across. For ordinary use, the ‘set’ should not exceed one- third the thickness of the blade. Back saws should have cross-cut teeth, but with little ‘set.’

The handy saw is a twenty-two-inch blade, about seven inches at the handle and two and a quarter at the end, ten teeth to the inch—the teeth filed at the same angle as the cross-cut, but straight across, as with the rip. This saw is general utility tool. If the blade is good but not heavy, it answers as both a rip and cross-cut, taking the place of the back saw for tenon shoulders and for sawed tenons. If kept in good order it cut a smooth and quickly, and will be called into use five times to either or all these others once.

A good supply of bits is necessary. These should consist of a variety of sizes of auger bits. Cook’s concavo-convex the best, but sp bits, if kept in order, are good. Both kinds of auger bits must be sharpened from the top-Cook’s with a rat-tail file, and the lip bit with a smooth mill file. Center bits are convenient, but they should be fitted up, as when purchased the center point is not equi-distant from the spur. To correct this, grind away the spur. The bit for all Work is the twist bit. It is the most complete boring tool in the market. It is easily kept sharp, will cut straight any way of the grain of the wood, and will not split. For taper holes use the ‘German gimlet,’ a taper pod bit, having a Screw point.

A small set of gouges should be on every bench, and one or two framer chisels, ground with round Cutting edges, will be found useful.