Ultimate Guide For How To Use A Hand Saw

Ultimate Guide For How To Use A Hand Saw

A hand saw is a basic piece of equipment that can be found in every workshop and kit,

Whether you're a skilled carpenter or a professional woodworker, you should look for the hand saw that is most suited for your particular activity, because different handsaws are not suitable to be used on every type of material.

We have created this guide to give you an overview of handsaws and how you should use them.

Different Types Of Handsaws

It is important to know the various kinds of handsaws and how to operate them. You should think about the materials you have available, the application, and the saw's capabilities.

Variations in tooth size are a problem as well; while small teeth are great for precision cutting, larger teeth are more suitable for heavy jobs and quicker cutting.

The following are some of the most common types of handsaws that you may come across:

  • Hand Saw - A basic handsaw is a necessary instrument in many workshops for cutting wood, drywall, or fiberglass. This is not a precision tool, learning to use one is easy. Instead, it's perfect for cutting bigger pieces of lumber and for woodworking.
  • Drywall Saw - The device can be used to drill holes for fixtures, pipelines, utility plugs, and electrical outlets. Because of its pointed tip, it is a precision tool that won't remove large sections of drywall.
  • Pull/Dovetail Saw - When working with plastic and laminate materials, this saw is used to cut kerfs on plastic and join wood. A pull saw may provide smooth incisions and flush cuts when the handle is aligned with the blade.
  • Hack Saw - The hacksaw is an adaptable tool to use. It is an excellent tool for metal crafts and is ideal for cutting materials that are harder than wood.
  • Rip Saw - An all-purpose tool for woodworking when you need to make rough cuts. You can cut against the wood grain, the teeth shift between left and right bends like a chisel. To create a precise straight cut that follows the grain, rip cut saws are only cut during the push stroke.

How To Use A Hand Saw

You develop a technique that works best for you as a carpenter or woodworker. There are, however, a couple of hand sawing methods that can help you to get started.

It is important that you wear safety glasses at all times, and stay away from others. Handsaws naturally like to cut straight, and it takes some effort to get them to veer from course.

Keep in mind to maintain a safe distance from the saw's sharp teeth and to line your body with it as two very important safety precautions. Making numerous practice cuts will waste wood, which is not something you want to do.

Instead, perfect your stance. You should relax and allow the saw to finish the work. Once you let the saw move with both the push and pull stroke movement, you'll end up working less.

Follow these simple steps in learning to saw correctly with a handsaw. 

Step 1: Mark Your Cut Line

After measuring your material twice, you need to determine where you want to make your cut.

Use chalk or a pencil to make a mark where you wish to start. To create a square notch, follow the line.

Step 2: Starting Cut

Using your knuckle to act as a guide to the blade when creating the first few cuts into the material to ensure accuracy.

To make a good kerf or groove in the wood, make a number of gradual back cuts. To have some room for error, position the teeth next to the line on the discarded side of the material.

By drawing the saw back towards you a few times, will create a grooved starting point.

Step 3: Saw At The Correct Angle

The saw should be angled to make the cut you require. For crosscuts, for instance, set the saw at a 45-degree angle, and for rip cutting, a 60-degree angle.

Step 4: Use Longer Strokes

Ultimate Guide For How To Use A Hand Saw

Once you've established a kerf, make a fairly deep cut with a few more strokes to free your gripping hand. Then, using large strokes and a fluid motion, drive the saw backwards and forward.

Short strokes cause many teeth to get dull more quickly than the others. To protect the material from breaking as you near the end, slow down and decrease the cutting pressure.

Step 5: Correct Any Mistakes

Sometimes, the most experienced worker can deviate from a straight edge occasionally.

Move the saw's blade back to the starting point that you started drifting and begin sawing from there. If not, your cut will be uneven.

Use A Handsaw That's Right For The Job

Different situations call for the use of a handsaw. One saw might be a better choice than another for each unique use.

For instance, there will be handsaws for sawing plasterboard, plastic, metal, and wood.


The ideal hand saw for cutting wood will depend on the specific task at hand. A coping saw can be used to slice the inside of wood, a pull saw can be used to cut dovetails, and a back saw produces accurate cuts.


Keyhole saws can cut holes in pipes when cutting metal. Another flexible tool which can saw through different kinds of metal is a hacksaw.


Both hacksaw and keyhole saw are two examples of hand saws that are effective with drywall. A keyhole saw can make holes in outlets, floor fixtures, walls, and ceilings.


You can choose to use hack, fret, keyhole, or pull saw to cut paneling materials like plastic.

What Makes A Good Hand Saw?

A saw with blunt teeth is absolutely useless, as it wouldn’t be able to cut easily. Thus creating more work for you.

In addition to that, you need to make sure that the handle on your handsaw isn't warped or crooked. This allows you to see in a straight line.

A saw's balance should be effortless and cozy in your hands without feeling top-heavy. In addition to this, the blade on every saw should flex when it is bent. It ought to immediately straighten once you let go.

Although they remove more material, thicker blades increase stability. Thinner blades might be the ideal choice if you require greater flexibility and thinner cuts, such as when making furniture.

For each project, the ideal ratio of thickness to flexibility is required.

Final Thoughts

In this guide, we have spoken about how to use a hand saw and how to find and choose the ideal hand saw that you need for your situation.

It is always important to make sure that you are using a hand saw that is clean and as sharp as possible. Sometimes it is better to apply an oil or beeswax to your blade to reduce the binding.

We hope this guide has helped you to understand how to use a handsaw.


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