A crosscut saw is a handy tool for cutting lumber, making furniture, and for other wood-cutting tasks.

What a Crosscut Saw Does

A crosscut saw is a specialized handsaw for manually cutting wood across the grain. Crosscut saws include a blade and a handle. The blade edge below the handle is the heel and the opposite end is the toe. The numerous cutting teeth between the heel and toe have alternating cutting edges. Each cutting tooth cuts with one edge and pushes the sawdust out with the other. Crosscut saws have 8 to 15 pointed teeth per inch.

How to Safely Use a Crosscut Saw

To safely use a crosscut saw, draw a straight line on the wood member you want to cut. Firmly hold or fasten the wood so that it will not move during cutting. Place the saw's central teeth on the line opposite you and push the saw in a short stroke to start the cut. Once started, pull and push the saw to cut the wood, making sure the cut follows the line. When nearly done, make sure the end of the wood being cut is held and will not splinter due to the unsupported weight.

For safety, always be aware that the teeth of a crosscut saw are sharp and pointed. Placing them point-down on an object or a body part will cut it.

How to Maintain a Crosscut Saw

Crosscut saws require periodic sharpening by a professional saw sharpener or with a quality saw sharpening tool available at major hardware stores. Keep your crosscut saw sharp for safety and for optimum cuts.

Tools Related to the Crosscut Saw

Other useful handsaws include the ripsaw, backsaw, keyhole saw, coping saw, and hacksaw. In addition, power saws can be fitted with crosscut and other special blades.

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