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Understanding Saw File Sizes

Files are sized by length and by their thickness (shorter files are naturally thinner to start with). Then, there is a variety of sizes available in each length... This is what follows after the length, e.g. a 6" 'Slim Taper'.

The common size tapered saw files you will find are 4" through 8" long, and are listed as (in order from widest to narrowest):

New Blog -

Norse Woodsmith has been a great experience for me.  I've learned more putting together this blog over the years about woodworking and hand tools, and met more people because of its existence than I dreamed possible.  It's been an exciting journey - to quote the Dead... 

"Sometimes the lights all shining on me
Other times I can barely see
Lately it occurs to me
What a long strange trip it's been"


In other words - a lot of fun! 

Saw Filing Templates

Something I am always asked for are the saw filing templates in PDF form that I made for my backsaw project.  They're the ones that are just lines on a page showing an angle to file a saw at or lines showing ppi to aid in cutting new teeth, like in this shot:

There were a few sizes missing - I made some additional templates to cover more sizes and angles, hopefully these will help you out.

I've compiled them all into one document and put them here:

Saw filing templates

They are all in PDF format - if you plot them without scaling them to fit the page (no scaling, in other words), they should print to scale properly.

EDIT:  For those daring types, here's a pair of progressive pitch templates, one for 6 ppi - 9 ppi Toe to Heel on a 9" (22.86cm) blade similar to Lie-Nielsen and another that is 7 – 13 PPI over 14” similar to their progressive-pitch filed tenon saw...

Progressive Saw Filing Templates

Have fun filing!


Thickness Caliper

I don't know, maybe these are as common as dirt and I'm just blissfully ignorant, but I've not seen one like this before, and thought it was interesting enough to post here.

My brother showed up yesterday and gave me this tool, asking if I what it was.  I knew what it was for almost immediately, as there could only be one use for it.  It is from the estate of a local custom knife maker here in Idaho, but that's not the original trade it was made for...



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