A New Hand Saw from the Dovetail Master Himself
Rob Cosman is a well known Canadian 'hand tool coach' offering DVD's and books on wood working for the past 10 years or more. When it comes to sawing dovetails he's absolutely incredible. I've watched pretty much all of his videos and can honestly say they've helped me a great deal along my own hand sawing journey. I would strongly recommend them to any worker at any stage. I'm very happy to hear Rob is offering a dovetail saw on his website. It seems to have some interesting features and I'll be curious to hear what people have to say about it. For starters, it has a heavy brass back that Rob says is almost twice the weight of a standard dovetail saw and is much better suited to "vibration free sawing". Second it comes with a 22ppi for the first 2" of blade and then a more standard 15 ppi. This fine tooth will make starting cuts much easier for beginners. Another plus, the saw plate at 10" is an inch longer than most dovetails saws on the market. Well, without trying one before purchasing one, (which you already know from my last blog I don't really enjoy doing all that much), I can only go by what I see and what I read. Again, I'll be hoping to hear from anyone that gets a chance to use it.
Lastly, on this point of 'Trying a tool before Buying a tool...' The description of the saws and the pictures on the website are all I have to go off of so with that I say this: These new resin saw handles are scaring the hell out of me! I know Rob said he went with the balance and durability in this "resin” composite handle, but from the picture on the website it looks like he had a few old bathroom counter tops he decided to recycle. I'm sure they feel great in hand and as Rob mentions are water-proof (for all of those times I'm cutting dovetails back home in the fresh Atlantic surf)
Maybe I'm a wood snob or am completely naive to this new technology of resin in handsaws, but for me a saw needs to have a wooden handle. Now just so everyone doesn't think I'm 'Rob bashing' or anything I'll also mention the new Veritas DT saw...they're a little bit on the creepy side too. I'm well aware that a hand tool doesn't have to look great to be great but it sure is nice when they do! Theres a truck load of hand tool manufacturers making sculpture like tools that perform as well as they look.
Robs new saws also come with a custom wooden box which I like. The idea is nice but I think it would be even nicer if the customer had the option of solely purchasing the saw without it; I'd be curious to see the price difference. Maybe I should take my own advice and see about trying one out. I'm sure he'll be at the wood show next year with some of them. I'll look forward to it.
With that, knowing Rob Cosman, and being a fan of his work for years, these things will probably eat dovetails for breakfast-but brother please...from one East Coaster to another...those handles?