This too cabinet will take forever

Welcome! Forums Project Series Tool Cabinet This too cabinet will take forever

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    I’m in woodworking for 3 month. My only knowledge comes from this website and youtube.
    My first project was the workbench, and I recently got some ash for a good price and thought it would be nice to build the tool cabinet.

    Those slabs are 4cm/1.5 Inch, and i need them 2cm/0.7 Inch. I’ve tried to cut them with a bandsaw. They barely fitted in height, but the bandsaw and i are unable to cut straight.
    So the only thing left is to cut them by hand.
    I just cut a little groove with the tablesaw to get a guide, but it still takes a lot of time.

    Also planing this stock took more time than a thought.

    I guess i need to develop some patience.

    cheers from switzerland


    Btw one question since i don’t have any experience in sawing/sharpening.
    I’m using a new bought cheep sharpable saw by Spear and Jackson.
    Should i resharpen it after one cut (the cut takes about 2 hour), or should i just wait until it gets much slower?
    I guess i don’t really know when a saw is dull.



    Hard to see in your pic, are the teeth on your saw sharpened with a RIP or crosscut pattern? I suspect they are not rip cut if it is taking two hours to cut one board. I don’t think you need to sharpen after every board either.

    But I am no pro….maybe the experts will chime in?


    You are most likely right.
    The saw is a Spear & Jackson 9500R, and they call it “universal saw”.
    Here are some images of this saw. Should this not be used for ripsawing?

    I just recently ordered an old disston saw, but it was not labeled ripcut explicitly.
    Just out of curiosity, is it a ripcut saw?


    Depends on the shape of the teeth and the number per inch. Both of those look like crosscut to me. Paul has an excellent video here that explains the different teeth and what they do. I use an old Disston with 5 1/2 pts per inch. It does a decent job at ripping down stock, but it still requires some time and effort.

    • This reply was modified 5 years, 11 months ago by trooper82.

    Resawing with a crosscut saw, which is what you have, is an exercise in… well, exercise. Judging by the look of the Spear and Jackson you could file out every other tooth and have a serviceable rip saw for wide cuts, however the modern (70s-90s) Spear and Jacksons I have owned were not made of the best spring steel and tend to kink easily. Perhaps they are better these days.

    Wider cuts need longer saws and coarser teeth; teeth as fine as the Spear and Jackson will be clogging up with sawdust before exiting the cut and therefore reducing the efficiency of the cut – not to mention that the crosscut teeth will be poorly-shaped for the task.

    If I had my choice of saws for that cut it would be a pre-1960 rip saw, 3-4tpi, 24″-28″ long (that is the full length of the plate). With the bigger teeth you can always start the cut with a finer saw.


    Southampton, UK


    I was able to change my order and now got an old spear an jackson 6tpi rip saw.
    I now need only half the time for cutting such a board, but this still means one hour.

    Matt McGrane

    I’m not surprised at how long it takes to cut that board in half, even with the proper saw. You are going through a lot of wood and it’s a long board.

    Matt, Northern California - Started a blog in 2016:


    Having the confidence to resaw a wide ash board like that after only a few months of practice is awesome. Keep going.

    Are you woodworking to win a race? Or to enjoy yourself?


    Thank you for the kind words.

    I do actually enjoy working wood and i’m not in a hurry. I guess the title of my post was a bit misleading.
    I meant it as an observation rather than as a complaint.
    At the moment i guess this tool cabinet will take several month for me to build and i’m totally fine with it.



    Hi Manuel –
    The problem with the spear & Jackson saws is that they are Not very Sharp when new (they are Machine manufactured and lack the hand filing necessary for true sharpness).
    I may be suggesting something a bit controversial, but what you really need (For a new woodworker; Without the ability to re-saw by machine; No saw sharpening experience; Who does not want to spend hundreds of Euros for a quality hand sharpened rip saw; Who obviously has the grit and determination necessary to become a real Craftsman – But may be disheartened by a lack of progress ((By the way – I’d pick your bargains a little better next time ;-))
    Is —
    A non re=sharpenable Hard – Point — Disposable (There I’ve said it !!)

    Seriously though — for a hobby Woodworker, this saw will last you for YEARS.
    ALSO, You will be able to ‘Know’ what really sharp is, for when you are sharpening your own.
    Have a look at the “Irwin Jack” range starting from 12Euro for
    Irwin Jack 880 Hand Saw 20″ Universal Panel Saw.
    16Euro for
    Irwin JACK PLUS 770 Hand Saw 22in/550mm Fast Cut – Anti-Friction – Coarse Cut.
    ALSO MADE IN Switzerland!

    When the teeth have dulled, you can cut up the plate to make thin flexible Scrapers — So Up-Cyclable as well.
    I’m not an Irwin salesman – Just a Pragmatist – This type of saw will give you a good start in your Woodworking.

    PS – I always think of a problem as needing two elements to solve it – Money and Time P = $$ x t
    You have just experienced this equation first hand — maybe try and give your time a monetary value, so that with experience you can properly assess whether (For YOU) it is better to buy wood that is, at one extreme just felled, to at the other, perfectly planed and dimensioned.
    As I said at the beginning, you obviously have the primary foundation qualities to become a Master Craftsman – Grit and Determination, The Handskill will naturally follow in time – Enjoy your learning,

    steve, County Cork, Ireland


    Hi steve,

    I actually got an old 26″ spear and jackson rip saw.
    It has 6tpi, and i did sharpen and set it based on the video from paul.

    With this newly sharpened saw, i was able to rip a board in 35 minutes instead of two hours. And i think it would be possible much faster, but i’m just not used/trained to sawing yet.
    And i even think i’m not very experienced in sharpening, but i guess i’m getting better 🙂


    • This reply was modified 5 years, 10 months ago by manuel42.

    Awesome job. Thanks for sharing.


    Hi Manuel

    I have to hand it to you, you are persisting in resawing those boards.
    Even with a good saw, it’s still a lot of work.

    But also a great learning experience. If you haven’t paid too high a price you’ll be an expert sharpener for your saws as well.

    As for the hunt for a descent saw, I’ve tried to get a few on fleabay myself and it’s hit and miss.
    If the sawblade isn’t bent or kinked beforehand (of course the seller always says it’s not) then the idiots at the repackaging plant are more than happy to screw it up for you.

    Maybe try to find someone willing to help you out with a band saw. Drop a line, maybe someone near you might help you out.

    Anyway, you’re further in your woodworking in 3 months than I’ve managed in 2 years…

    Have fun
    May the grain be with you…



    On this “hard point” saw issue… I absolutely agree with you, buddy. I know Paul hates those saws, I guess because they can’t be resharpened, so he sees them as wasteful. He’s right, and I understand that point of view, but the bottom line is, they’re cheap, and, man, do they cut FAST! Unbelievably fast! I have 20 inch Stanley 9 TPI “FatMax” with impulse hardened teeth that I use in my shop all the time. This is a cheap saw (17 USD delivered), and it has pretty aggressive set that makes for a pretty rough cut. But it has its place, and when used for what it was intended, it works great. I love mine. If I lost it, I would buy another one in a heartbeat.

    I mostly use it to rough cut planks to length before trimming them on the table saw, and cutting construction lumber. But I’ve also used it to saw planks out of a old, very dry block of red oak about 8″ x 8″ x 60″. I realize that, when it does finally goes dull, it can’t be sharpened and I’ll just have to replace it, but when will that be exactly? It seems as sharp now as it did when I bought it. For 17 USD, I’m not too worried about replacing it when the time comes.

    Along these same lines, I’ve recently switched from my Veritas dovetail saw to a Japanese style pull saw that also has hardened teeth. I’ve cut maybe 100 pins and tails now with my Veritas saw, which isn’t a huge number, and it’s about ready for a resharpening. It’s too early for me to say from personal experience how the pull saw will hold up, but I will say it is identical to the one David Barron uses, and he claims to have cut over 10,000 dovetails with his, with no need to resharpen yet.

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