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A Visit to the Blacksmith for Frame Saw Parts

11 years ago

Roubo Frame SawI have just begun production on semester 4 for the Hand Tool School. One of the lessons this time around is on resawing by hand. The technique really isn’t all that different from regular hand sawing but resawing can be made a lot easier with the right tool. So perhaps I chose this as a lesson for an excuse to build a dedicated resawing frame saw. For a good design it only makes sense to go back to our woodworking roots and consult Monsieur Roubo. As usual he has a plate or two that get our creative juices flowing. Mike Siemsen and his buddies recreated this saw last year and brought it along to the Hand Tool Olympics at Woodworking in America. After getting to try it there I knew it was going to be on my build list.

Getting the raw steel for the blade wasn’t going to be a problem and even the other parts could be had from the local big box store, but I wanted something with more style. Something hand made by a local craftsman. I talk a lot about supporting the boutique tool dealers so they can continue to make beautiful things that advance our craft and this is the thought that was running through my head when I contacted Vince Bombe of Artisan Iron Designs. Vince is veteran (retired special forces) and a second generation Blacksmith who has a great eye for design and a huge knowledge of smithing and metal work. He designed a unique pattern with real flair that looks like it would be at home in a gothic cathedral or used at a Renaissance fair. I love it and what’s more exciting is that there is an element of free form to the whole design so each and every kit he makes will be unique. I visited his shop and Vince shared with me how he makes some of the parts. I took this video during my lunch break on a work day and used my iPhone so I apologize that the quality isn’t up to my normal standard.

Vince is producing hardware kits now on an as needed basis for $107 and running about a 3 week lead time. Hand Tool School members gets a discount (grab the code from the Semester 4 page) but I really wanted to make sure that venture is worth Vince’s while too. So I’m introducing this to the general public as well. Resawing by hand isn’t for everyone, but it is great to continue the long tradition of woodworkers and blacksmiths working together to create beautiful things.

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