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A new dovetail saw from Lie-Nielsen combines the easy-start feature of a fine-tooth saw with the aggressive cutting advantage of coarse teeth. As a result, it’s easy to place a cut right where you want it and, once started, quickly complete it.
You need only look at the teeth to find the secret. At the toe of the saw, the teeth are spaced at 16 teeth per inch (tpi), a relatively fine number. At the heel, the spacing is a coarser 9 tpi. The idea is to start cuts with the toe of the saw, and complete them with the rest of the blade.
The saw is 14 in. long, with a 9-in. blade filed as a ripsaw. It has 1-5/8 in. of usable blade below its brass back. The saw’s handle is made of curly maple that is gracefully sculpted and very comfortable to hold.
I used the saw in a variety of woods. In medium-density woods such as cherry and mahogany, the saw started effortlessly and cut fast, smooth, and straight. There was no tendency for the saw to drift in the cut.
In harder woods like white oak and hickory, the saw was equally easy to start but the cut was a bit rougher and the coarse teeth felt a bit more pronounced. I found that by using a very light touch and taking most of my weight off the saw, the cut was much smoother.
The saw sells for $135. Go to www.lie-nielsen.com for more information.
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