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Author Topic: In search of a real Jig Saw  (Read 7989 times)

Bob K

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In search of a real Jig Saw
« on: December 17, 2014, 05:00:13 PM »

I have been searching without success for a powered tool that used to be known as a "Jig Saw", but all I am finding are devices like powered small hack saws, with hack saw type blades.  No good for tight curves.

Remember when you could buy/make real wooden Jig Saw puzzles, from 1/4" thick ply, with intricately curved interlocking edges?   The then-Jig-Saws (my Dad had one) were very compact and with slim cutting blades circular in cross section.  You could glue your picture to the plywood, mark out the jig saw pattern, then cut it all out.  The blade vibrated.

I am looking for something similar to do intricate model woodwork, especially deck plank edging, where you can pause, turn through 90', and carry on.  . . . . At least do tight curves.

Any ideas ?

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grendel

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Re: In search of a real Jig Saw
« Reply #1 on: December 17, 2014, 05:02:19 PM »

search for a powered fret saw, these use fret saw blades (of the type you describe) or possibly scroll saw.
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tica

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Re: In search of a real Jig Saw
« Reply #2 on: December 17, 2014, 05:04:46 PM »

Like this one ?

Wrong link sorry
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jenga

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Re: In search of a real Jig Saw
« Reply #3 on: December 17, 2014, 05:14:18 PM »

are you thinking of the vibro saw, I got a couple from years back, blade only moves about 1/32 of an inch. will cut end grain balsa with no tear out and will not cut your skin (your skin moves more than travel of blade), quite funny to grab the blade while its working, people freak.. good for ply up to about 3/8 inch. three of us ordered 1 each at the model engineering exhibition and 6 were delivered.
very good but noisy
jenga
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radiojoe

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Re: In search of a real Jig Saw
« Reply #4 on: December 17, 2014, 06:59:29 PM »

This is the one I use Bob, it takes various blades including fret blades I wouldn't be without it,  ;)
Joe
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Bob K

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Re: In search of a real Jig Saw
« Reply #5 on: December 17, 2014, 07:44:24 PM »

My problem is this, whether blades are called "Fret"; "Coping"; "Jig"; "Scroll"; etc they all appear to have one thing in common, and that is the blades are a flat metal strip with teeth on one edge, just like a miniature hacksaw blade.  No good for going round tight curves or even corners.

The original Jig Saws had blades like a cylindrical Christmas Tree.  The operating machine would ideally be a vibro or oscillating type, but the key requirement is a small circular cross-section blade.

Maybe no-one cuts fine scrollwork in wood any more?
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david48

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Re: In search of a real Jig Saw
« Reply #6 on: December 17, 2014, 07:53:07 PM »

I picked up a B&Q branded PRO for 25. 00 second hand like new , not a bit of wonder it was cheep its total rubbish  ,it did help in my build with lot of care ,don't go there . The best you can buy is a Henger but you will need very deep pockets with lots of cash at the bottom . Look at Axminster tools or even talk to them ,fret work saws are still out there.The blades are that narrow ,some are just as wide as the kerf so tight corners can be achieved .
David
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john44

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Re: In search of a real Jig Saw
« Reply #7 on: December 17, 2014, 07:56:39 PM »

Hi Bob, are you referring to abrafile blades wich are primeraly used for cutting ceramic tiles.
Have you tried Screwfix or tool Station?


John
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Duncan

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Re: In search of a real Jig Saw
« Reply #8 on: December 17, 2014, 08:11:30 PM »

Hi Bob,

I think the blades you are referring to are known as spiral fret or piercing saw blades.

Hope this helps
Duncan
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plug

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Re: In search of a real Jig Saw
« Reply #9 on: December 17, 2014, 08:14:13 PM »

Hi,
if it's fret saw blades it may be something like this in the link

http://www.alwayshobbies.com/tools/hand-tools/saws/fretsaw-blades-$4-accessories-/spiral$1twist-fretsaw-blades

regards Jack.
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Vintage

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Re: In search of a real Jig Saw
« Reply #10 on: December 17, 2014, 08:19:30 PM »

No good for going round tight curves or even corners.


A scroll saw / fret saw will cut the tightest corner without any issues and, as has been said, Hegner are about the best available - I've been using mine for the past 26 years and it's as good now as the day I purchased it.

You can see them here: Hegner Scrollsaws

Mark
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flashtwo

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Re: In search of a real Jig Saw
« Reply #11 on: December 17, 2014, 08:24:58 PM »

Hi,

I've been using this one for many years, a bit expensive but does the finest of cuts.

http://www.axminster.co.uk/proxxon-ds-230-e-fretsaw

My dad's one had a treadle and you had to spin the wheel to get it going if the crank was in the wrong position!

Ian
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Liverbudgie

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Re: In search of a real Jig Saw
« Reply #12 on: December 17, 2014, 08:28:02 PM »

Bob,

Do you mean a floor mounted jig saw? My father had one in his workshop at Liverpool Uni on which I was allowed to cut things out on. It really was quite big, the throat was good four foot deep and the table around three feet across.

I've had a quick look now but I can't find anything that even approaches it; all that I can find are the modern hand held versions, which are good enough for most jobs I suppose.
LB

PS: The big one was painted grey, almost the same grey as Myford used, so did they make it I wonder?
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flashtwo

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Re: In search of a real Jig Saw
« Reply #13 on: December 17, 2014, 08:34:29 PM »

Hi Bob,

It was floor mounted , but was more akin to a spinning wheel. The table was no more than a foot diameter and the drive cord was leather.

Ian
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Skimmer Fan

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tonyH

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Re: In search of a real Jig Saw
« Reply #15 on: December 17, 2014, 08:51:31 PM »

The one that used to be sold by Maritime Models (of blessed memory) was made by Aeropiccola in Italy. It's a simple vibrosaw, with about a 5" throat and a sliding weight on the top to damp excess vibrations (allegedly). The sharpest corner was whatever the blade width was - about 1/32" . Desk mounted with about an 10" table. Great for jigsaw making because the only right-angle cuts were at the edge. No speed control of course.
Used to move about the desk if the suckers lost their suck and there was a lot of trial and error in setting it up - BUT it was fun :-))
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Bob K

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Re: In search of a real Jig Saw
« Reply #16 on: December 17, 2014, 09:16:08 PM »

Thanks for all your replies.  The spiral scroll appears the nearest modern equivalent to the coarse needle file like blades my Dad's small bench mounted jig saw had. Very tiny blades, and broke easily.
The Proxxon unit looks great, if somewhat large for small intricate sections of thin walnut sheet.

What I find difficult is why things are now being sold as jig saws that are clearly incapable of cutting out jig saw puzzle pieces.
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Skimmer Fan

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Re: In search of a real Jig Saw
« Reply #17 on: December 17, 2014, 09:20:47 PM »

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Vintage

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Re: In search of a real Jig Saw
« Reply #18 on: December 17, 2014, 09:33:17 PM »



What I find difficult is why things are now being sold as jig saws that are clearly incapable of cutting out jig saw puzzle pieces.

A Jig-Saw is a handheld tool that was never meant to cut out the components of a Jigsaw (puzzle) the similarity in the name is, and has always been, purely coincidental.

Jigsaws have always ever been cut using a fret / scroll saw or stamped out so far as I'm aware.
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dreadnought72

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Re: In search of a real Jig Saw
« Reply #19 on: December 17, 2014, 11:33:57 PM »

I love my Proxxon. It's one of those tools which made me wince when I bought it, but it's used so often I think I've got my moneys' worth.

In terms of corners, a five mm radius with a normal fretsaw blade on decent wood/ply is super-easy.

Andy
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Shipmate60

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Re: In search of a real Jig Saw
« Reply #20 on: December 18, 2014, 12:35:46 AM »

As has been said before Bob an Abrafile is not just used for ceramics.
If fitted in a vibro saw it will cut in any direction if tensioned correctly.
I have these fitted in a hacksaw and find them invaluable for awkward cuts.


Bob
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Bob K

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Re: In search of a real Jig Saw
« Reply #21 on: December 18, 2014, 08:09:54 AM »

OK.  A Proxxon D 230/E it is then.  I have been watching some YouTube clips and realise there will be a learning curve on using these effectively.  Abrafile blades seem in short supply, so will start with a fine tooth spiral scroll.  I would have thought diamond-dust coated round wire blades would have been more common.

I am not cutting out ship hull frames (thicker and with gentle curves), but intricate deck plank edging detail.
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derekwarner

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Re: In search of a real Jig Saw
« Reply #22 on: December 18, 2014, 08:17:33 AM »

Bob..... you will never be sorry with your purchase of a Proxxon machine  :-)) .........Derek
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grendel

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Re: In search of a real Jig Saw
« Reply #23 on: December 18, 2014, 12:54:55 PM »

I have an old Stanley branded fretsaw (powered) it uses an electromagnet to vibrate the blade, about the smallest radius it will cut (with a standard fretsaw blade is about a 0.5mm radius, basically you stop feeding forward and just ease the blade round the corner, for a tighter corner just cut a radius, then spin the work around and head into the corner along each line for an inside corner, for an outside corner just circle in the waste to come back at 90 degrees to the original path.
This will easily cut jigsaw pieces. you can get narrower fretsaw blades for the tighter curves, though they do tend to break easier
Grendel
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BarryM

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Re: In search of a real Jig Saw
« Reply #24 on: December 18, 2014, 01:00:18 PM »

The one that used to be sold by Maritime Models (of blessed memory) was made by Aeropiccola in Italy. It's a simple vibrosaw, with about a 5" throat and a sliding weight on the top to damp excess vibrations (allegedly). The sharpest corner was whatever the blade width was - about 1/32" . Desk mounted with about an 10" table. Great for jigsaw making because the only right-angle cuts were at the edge. No speed control of course.
Used to move about the desk if the suckers lost their suck and there was a lot of trial and error in setting it up - BUT it was fun :-))

... and mine is still in regular use 35 years on. Excellent kit. If you can find one - grab it.

Barry M
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