0.0 BE SAFE!!! If you don’t know what you’re doing or you are unfamiliar with the tools and techniques described don’t do this! Find somebody who has the knowledge you need and ask for their help. Always exercise extreme care when working with tools. Always wear eye protection and other personal protective equipment as appropriate.
1.0 Materials and Supplies
1.1 Saw handle with blade slot
2.1 First pick out the locations of the screws on your saw handle and mark them with a pencil or scribe (Figure 1). The best procedure is to first cut the slot into which your saw blade will fit and then install your screws.
Figure 1. Screw positions marked.
NOTE: Use of piloted counterbores is strongly recommended. Forstner bits will give sub-optimal results unless they are very carefully used. If you are using Forstner bits jump to 2.2.2 below.
Figure 2. Piloted counterbore
Figure 3. Pilot holes drilled.
Figure 4. 5/32” transfer punch
Figure 5. Whitney Jensen sheet metal punch.
Figure 6. Carbide spade bit
18.104.22.168 Once you have made the holes in your saw blade place the blade back into the handle slot. Check to ensure that the holes line up properly. Now set the blade aside.
22.214.171.124 Install the counterbore that has exactly the diameter of your screw head in your drill (Figure 7). A drill press is really helpful here – doing this with a hand held drill is difficult and could be dangerous. Consider yourself warned.
Figure 7. Handle ready for counterboring.
126.96.36.199 Carefully drill the recesses for the screw heads and nuts. Go slowly and check the depth of the recesses by periodically stopping and inserting the head of a screw into the recess. I like to have the head of the screw seated slightly below the surrounding wood surface to allow for later sanding and finishing of the handle (Figure 8).
Figure 8. Counterbores done.
2.2.2 If you are using Forstner bits:
188.8.131.52 Install a 1/16” or smaller drill bit in your drill. Drill pilot holes at each point where you intend to install a screw. Drill the holes as perfectly perpendicular as possible from side to side in the locations selected for screw installation.
184.108.40.206 Install the Forstner bit having the diameter of your screw head in your drill. A drill press is really helpful here – doing this with a hand held drill is difficult and could be dangerous. Consider yourself warned.
220.127.116.11 If using a drill press clamp the saw handle in position on top of the backer board.
18.104.22.168 Carefully drill the recesses for the screw heads and nuts being certain to center up the point of the Forstner bit on the 1/16” hole drilled in 22.214.171.124. Go slowly and check the depth of the recesses by periodically stopping and inserting the head of a screw into the recess. I like to have the head of the screw seated slightly below the surrounding wood surface to allow for later sanding and finishing of the handle. Seat the screws according to your taste – there are no hard and fast rules here. Remember to drill all of the recesses you need on both sides of the handle.
126.96.36.199 Now drill the holes for the screw shanks. Make sure that you center the drill bit up on the 1/16” hole drilled in 188.8.131.52. Brad point bits are useful here. The ATW screws have shanks that are 3/16” in diameter. The best procedure is to drill 5/32”” pilot holes in the handle first. Drill the holes as perfectly perpendicular as possible from side to side.
184.108.40.206 After drilling all of the screw shank holes insert your saw blade into the slot in the handle. Make sure that the blade is in the position you desire, if not fit the handle to the blade to ensure that it is where you want it to be.
220.127.116.11 Use the 5/32” transfer punch to mark the positions of all of the screw holes on the saw blade.
18.104.22.168 At this point you should drill or punch the holes in your new saw plate at the points marked by the transfer punch. See 22.214.171.124 above for details.
126.96.36.199 Once you have made the holes in your saw blade place the blade back into the handle slot. Check to ensure that the holes line up properly. Now set the blade aside.
2.3 Now square up the round boss under the head of each screw. I use a safe-edge file and use a C clamp the screws against a wooden bench top to hold the screw in position (Figures 9 -11). Don’t worry about scratching or slightly cutting into the underside of the screw heads, they will be hidden from view after assembly.
Figure 9. Clamp the screw to the bench like this
Figure 10. File the sides of the bolster square Note the safe edge on the file (upper)
Figure 11. Screw bolster squared up
2.4 You should now have your saw blade properly fitted to your handle with holes in them corresponding to the locations of each of your saws screws.
2.5 Insert the saw blade into the handle. Using the #0 hand reamer and tap holder start reaming one hole (Figure 12). Pause periodically and check to check the fit of the screw shank to the hole. Ream from the head side of the handle only. If necessary proceed to the #1 reamer to attain the required clearance to admit the screw shank. Once the screw shank will pass all of the way through the handle stop reaming.
Figure 12. Tapered reamers
2.6 Now cut the square mortises at the bottom of the head side of each screw hole using the ¼” wood chisel. Go slowly and test fit the screw to the hole frequently.
2.7 Once the first screw is properly fitted to it’s hole insert the screw and leave it in place to hold the handle steady on the blade.
2.8 Now start reaming the next hole – choose the hole most distant from the first hole and make sure to hold the blade in place.
2.9 Ream and fit up all screws to their holes as above.
2.10 Remove the screws once the are well fitted and finish out your handle and saw.
In the end the installed screws look like this when finished.
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