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Library Card

Beckley, Bob . 2005. Field Tests Comparing Modern to Vintage Crosscut Saws. 0523 2320. Missoula, MT: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, National Technology and Development Program. 4 p.

Describes field tests by experienced, certified crosscut sawyers comparing the modern Homesteader crosscut saw manufactured by Tuatahi Racing Axes and Saws in New Zealand to vintage peg-and-raker crosscut saws. The Homesteader is shorter and stiffer than vintage crosscut saws, which offered some advantages. The Homesteader is flat ground (the back of the saw's blade is as thick as the teeth), rather than tapered (the back of the saw's blade is thinner than the teeth), which makes the Homesteader crosscut saw more likely to bind in a cut. In addition, the Homesteader is deeper (measured from the back of the saw's blade to its teeth) than a traditional saw, which makes it harder to use wedges when felling a tree. The Homesteader doesn't have rakers to remove wood shavings, which means more cutting teeth are in the wood at any time, allowing the Homesteader to cut more quickly than a traditional crosscut saw. Although the Homesteader crosscut saw performed well in a variety of situations, most U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service sawyers preferred vintage peg-and-raker crosscut saws, because they allowed sawyers to develop a sawing rhythm and work longer before tiring.

Keywords: Homesteader, tools, traditional skill, traditional tool, Tuatahi Racing Axes and Saws, wilderness management


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