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Punching teeth in Saw Plate

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  • Punching teeth in Saw Plate

    I've got some ideas floating around in my head, but they require a way to punch out or form teeth in sheet metal appropriate for saw plate, or just old saw plates.

    So the question: Without breaking my bank, what can I do to form teeth? I'm aware there were specialized machines (Foley toothers and filers) but that's way out of my league here. I also know I could sit there with a saw sharpening file, but it's slow and the number of files I would go through ... ICK!

    I'm also looking to avoid an arbor press unless I can find one with a equilateral triangle punch die.

    Any ideas on a tool that I could do this with by hand perhaps? Does such a thing exist? I'm not much of a metal working type. I prefer to try it myself, will go to a T&D shop that takes small jobs if necessary and the price is reasonable.

    Best idea I could come up with so far ... some kind of dremel with a cutting disk mounted in a jig.
    Last edited by Allegrus; 08-11-2016, 12:44 PM.
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  • #2

    Re: Punching teeth in Saw Plate

    Mark,

    To repair an old saw of HCS one is best to file in the new teeth as the impact of a punch can break off teeth or warp the blade, or both.

    To punch teeth in 1090 steel plate one really needs a saw punch as the 1090 is much tougher than HCS and you would wear out a box of files cutting a course saw plate by hand.

    i have an old Foley with the carrier bars and setup guides and it works well. The trick is to make certain the die is sharp and properly set up.

    Erik

    Canada's Island Paradise - Prince Edward Island

    Proud member of the Wadkin Blockhead Club

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    • #3

      Re: Punching teeth in Saw Plate

      I would be happy to sell my Foley Tooth punch for 40$, can get it to Ottawa if not in a hurry. I do not have the rails for hand saws.
      Rob

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      • #4

        Re: Punching teeth in Saw Plate

        Are you looking to make your own saws or are you restoring an old saw? Unfortunately, there's not much of a demand for handsaw filing anymore. $15-20 will buy a new saw (case hardened teeth that cannot be filed) at a box store where most professional grind shops need to charge close to that if not more.

        You will want either a punch or waterjet to cut the tooth profile if you're using proper saw steel. If you have a way of annealing the cut edge, you could use a laser. True saw steel will case harden with most grinding or heat type of cutting and this will lead to the blade loosing its ability to flex and ultimately cracking.

        Foley equipment is good but you will need 3 pieces of equipment to do the job properly. The tooth punch offered above with proper dies/rails, a setter to get your desired kerf, and a filer to sharpen the new teeth.
        KenL likes this.

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        • #5

          Re: Punching teeth in Saw Plate

          Originally posted by Fulcrum View Post
          Foley equipment is good but you will need 3 pieces of equipment to do the job properly. The tooth punch offered above with proper dies/rails, a setter to get your desired kerf, and a filer to sharpen the new teeth.
          Are you looking to restore Grandpa's old saws or build a few new ones from scratch?

          there are people online that will sell you 1090 steel already punched to the desired pitch at a reasonable rate, which leaves you to do the filing, setting and mounting of the handle. Remember that to drill 1090 plate is tough unless you have good sharp HSS or carbide drills. Personally I use a Greenlee punch, but if I did not have that one I would buy a carbide bit.

          filing and setting do not require a power machine, just a vise and lots of practice to get proficient. Most people tend to overset their saws.

          set depends upon the type of saw and the wood it will be used in. Most people are not sawing green wood anymore, so a few thou is likely good for seasoned hardwood in a rip saw.

          there are many websites to offer a lot of good advice on saw construction, sharpening and repair.

          have fun.
          Erik

          Canada's Island Paradise - Prince Edward Island

          Proud member of the Wadkin Blockhead Club

          Comment


          • #6

            Re: Punching teeth in Saw Plate

            Originally posted by ErikM View Post
            Are you looking to restore Grandpa's old saws or build a few new ones from scratch?
            Hence the reason I asked the OP:

            Originally posted by Fulcrum
            Are you looking to make your own saws or are you restoring an old saw?
            Without knowing exactly what the OP's intentions are, we are just shooting in the dark as to how to advise him. I'm going on the assumption that the OP wants to make and sell handsaws. Without the efficiency gained by having the machines, it's a losing proposition.

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            • #7

              Re: Punching teeth in Saw Plate

              Thanks for the info Fulcrum. My intention is to punch teeth into fresh, new plates OR cutting up old plates and punching teeth in those. It wouldn't be for commercial use, so I'm not so concerned about how fast I can do it.

              I've actually made a saw plate completely by hand, but getting the teeth shaped in the plate by hand was the most laborious task and took a few files to do it; enough to turn me off of that task. Therefore it's the task I want to automate the most. I haven't an issue setting or sharpening by hand, so I won't need those other Foley machines you mentioned.

              A Foley machine like Iamtooler is offering is tempting but I'm not so familiar with them; perhaps I should not have dismissed them, assuming they would be expensive and big. From what I gather, rails are the parts that are hard to find and a $40 offer is very reasonable. Does anyone know if it's possible to operate the machine in a manner that a user could position the plate and punch a tooth (I see the machine can be operated manually) one tooth at a time? If that's the case, I've very interested in your offer Iamtooler.



              Last edited by Allegrus; 08-15-2016, 10:20 AM.

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              • #8

                Re: Punching teeth in Saw Plate

                Yes you can punch 1 tooth at a time by indexing manually. It should not be difficult to index off the tooth you just punched. I am a die maker but have no experience with punching saw blades.
                Rob

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                • #9

                  Re: Punching teeth in Saw Plate

                  Mark,

                  i would get the Foley punch and go online to get a set of carrier bars, I have three, one for straight saws, one for breasted saws, and one for back saws that have a spine. These can be found on the auction sites or through WTB adds on woodworking and tool forums like this one.

                  The indexing bars are harder to find but these can be made if you know someone with access to a CNC machine. Mine are original but I have heard of people making them also.

                  Without the carriers and indexing bars the punch is not very useful as there needs to be a way to align and space the saw plate for each punch.
                  Erik

                  Canada's Island Paradise - Prince Edward Island

                  Proud member of the Wadkin Blockhead Club

                  Comment


                  • #10

                    Re: Punching teeth in Saw Plate

                    Watch this Paul Sellers video:

                    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mTqZTGPPRj0

                    He starts off the teeth with a hacksaw because they're cheaper than files.

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                    • #11

                      Re: Punching teeth in Saw Plate

                      That's a pretty interesting idea ... still, quite a bit of metal to remove for larger saws. That was similar to an idea I had to use a Dremel tool with a cut off wheel.

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