Going as low as possible while maintaining a similar angle will increase your chances of avoiding splinters or tear outs. While most people tend to think table saws are the only option, you probably don’t own one unless you have access to a workshop. Find out with what dimension you want to make the cut. Make sure the saw blade is in an upright position while you are holding it. Continue this thread For melamine, plywood, and anything else made of compressed or brittle materials. So, don’t skip the eye-protective glass as well. Both ends of plywood need support when you are cutting it. If you are not getting satisfying straight cut, here’s a trick. The English made Spear & Jackson 9550B Traditional Brass Back Tenon Saw is a classic hand saw, that is perfect for precision cutting of small and thin pieces of wood. Keep on Reading! As you go deeper in the middle, it gets a bit … Gradually start drawing on the edge to create a notch. Starting With…. It’s best to follow a good face down rule for plywood placement. One of the easiest and most accurate ways to cut the panels to length is to use a crosscut sled, as shown below. Use another piece of wood to keep the saw from moving away from the line if necessary. Once the cut is started, lower the saw’s angle to about 45 degrees-or 30 degrees if you’re cutting plywood-and make smooth, full strokes. Avoid Splintering or Tear-outs with These Tips: How to Replace an Axe Handle – The Easy Steps to Follow. You can avoid that through some easy to remember tips given right below. They usually have more teeth per inch than other saws, and they vary greatly in length and height of the saw blade. These saws generally contain a framing device that holds the plywood in place. Start the cut by applying no pressure onto the saw and pull back. It enables better control and a more precise cutting than with a more flexible saw blade, and as such it’s a good choice for thin/small piece of wood that need to be cut with precision. The blade will glide through the foam while it cuts the wood. To get a smooth cut on a sheet of plywood, you'll need to have the right blade. The first step of making something beautiful out of these includes cutting them into proper pieces. But there’s still a chance of getting it inside your eyes. Below is a video showing you the process: A jig is super easy to make, and can be used many times. If you’re cutting it on the ground, place the plywood on top of a 4' x 8' sheet of 2" foam (blue board) and set your blade to the correct depth so it doesn’t contact the ground. Step 4: Cross Cutting Plywood Sheets to Desired Length. If you are not getting satisfying straight cut, here’s a trick. With a 0.75 inches thick plywood, you want to set saw at 1 inch below the sheet. How to Use a Shop Vac to Pick Up Water the Right Way? The Japanese-made SUIZAN Ryoba Pull Saw has a fine blade, that enables a more precise cut. Examples of hand saws in this category include bow saws and Tajima saws. Make sure you hold your saw in a low angle, preferably between 30 to 45 degrees, but a lower angle ensures a finer cut. Just as the name suggests, it “rips” through the wood, will indeed rip the edges of plywood sheets if not used with utmost care. There are basically 2 ways to cut plywood by hand: We’ll get into details with both options below: This method can be used for any type of plywood, but requires a firm hand, patience and some precision. Next, make sure you properly orient the sheet as you’re cutting. Nevertheless, the Irwin Tools 1773465 Universal Handsaw definitely comes close thanks to its versatility and affordability. If you’re in the market for a small hand saw, choose the 14-inch model, but if you want more efficiency, you can choose the 20-inch model. Plywood can also be cut using a vertical panel plywood cutting saw. Notify me of follow-up comments by email. It is a popular hand saw for plywood, and works great for other purposes as well. When it comes down to it, there is no one best hand saw for cutting wood. It features a strong double-edged saw blade with 9 teeth per inch on the rip-cut edge, and 15 teeth per inch on the cross-cut edge. Now you want to begin from the board’s edge portion. This is followed by a square cut to finished length. That’s exactly what I’m going to do next. I like plywood for multiple reasons, but especially because of how beautiful and durable it is. The first cut simply trims and squares one end. This also lessens the chance of any snapping by keeping plywood stable. Adjust the Speed. Find out how to prevent a saw from binding. Make sure your shoulder and forearm are on similar line when you go for a stroke. You may expect to make a cut as precise as a table saw, but although a hand saw comes close, there’s a lot of technique involved when using a hand saw. Our team independently selects, reviews, and identifies the best products. To guide the blade simply use your hands. You need a helping guide that is processed to route in every step of this process. Once you think the notch made on edge is pretty solid, start with cutting. It’s not just durable but also capable of making some beautiful pieces. Most hand saws have their teeth measuring between 1 to 32 teeth per inch (TPI). Another trick is to tape the both sides of the cutting line with masking tape and then cut through the tape. This means you can rip cut a full sheet of plywood. Put the blades of the handsaw over where you want to cut the plywood, then gently pull back and forth with no pressure. It is a general-use saw that is able to cut along and across the grain, and the brass back adds additional stability as you cut through the wood. Making the cut. We may earn affiliate commissions on purchases made from links on this page. How to Stain Kitchen Cabinets Without Sanding! Until the hand saw has made a small cut into the plywood, slowly apply pressure in cutting through. Secure the plywood sheet to your work bench (or a table) with a pair of clamps. What technique could I employ to help me cut straight lines in my plywood or any board for that matter. If you are wearing gloves, there’s less chance of an accident. In addition, hand saws are created specifically to … That’s where most tear out occurs. Second, a hand saw whose TPI is above 10 has fine-toothed blades. There will be some tips to avoid those nasty splitters that sometimes ruins the fun. The alternative is to cut it into small size using a circular saw. Below are my personal recommendations, coming from a family of craftsmen. Choose the right kind of blade. A lot of jigsaws have a feature called an orbital setting. It’s best to place the sheet you’re cutting on a set of sawhorses. It’s a great little hand saw for plywood, but can’t be used for cutting long straight lines because of the design. Run the blade of the saw along the cut line. The blade teeth must enter sheet from below. Now, that’s how to easily RIP cut a plywood sheet, but what about cross cuts? Children are not allowed at all. Learn how to use a hand saw. In this weeks tip, I show you a very simple, effective and efficient way to cut 1/4” plywood. You also want to brace the cutoff end. Essential Woodworking Tools for Beginners You Need to Know. Place your hand saw, and make the initial cut by placing your thumb and move your saw CAREFULLY against the teeth direction. But, its success lies on its jagged edges. Hand saw is an excellent choice for handling plywood. You want to work without worrying about your tiny sweeties getting hurt. Well, the dust mask will help you not to inhale bad stuffs flying around. Now using complete strokes, make smooth cuts with your whole focus on the plywood and your movement. Also, you need a worthy and quality handsaw to handle pieces better. All you need is some straight leftover wood, such as a pair of 2×4’s or similar, some glue, a few screws, and clams. My favorite part about this panel saw is that you can lock the blade into position on the guide rails, rotate the blade 90 degrees, and then you can push the plywood through the cut lengthwise, sliding it along the support wings. That’s why do make sure you are using a nice hand saw that functions fine while ensuring the other parts of this guide as well. How do you cut down plywood sheets by hand? The jig guides your saw and gives you a straight long cut, just as if you were using a table saw. If you’re going to create furniture using a hand saw, you may want to practice your technique a bit first, to ensure that you’re able to make cuts as precise as you need them. Continue straight through the plywood with the saw until it has been cut in two. Sight down the back of the saw from overhead to align it; your … It has this modern yet rustic feel, and it is cheap and widely available in most hardware stores. In that case, you simply need to slightly twist the handle. A 1 to 7 TPI hand saw has coarse-toothed blades. Now hold your saw in … Going with your instinct is something you’re allowed to do if such chores are pretty regular in your life. Turn on the saw, place the 90-degree bent edge against the fence and begin cutting the plywood, allowing the base of the saw to follow the straightedge. They will enable more efficient cutting. Now hold your saw in the lowest angle possible, so you won’t rip the edges. Initial Considerations for Hand Saws and Plywood. So for a circular saw and miter saw, make your cuts with the good face down; on the table saw… Plywood is one favorite material that woodworkers and DIYers would enjoy working with. Cross-cut saws are usually a bit shorter, and have more teeth per inch of the blade. That means slower pace, but it also results in a much smoother edge and less chance of ripping the plywood. I’ll get into those methods at the bottom of this article, so make sure you read it all. One common tool that is often found laid around such creative people’s homes is a hand saw. Again, you could swap step 3 and 4, but I usually rip first, then cross cut second. Keep going, until you’re nearing the last few inches. You could use a regular cross-cut saw for this, but a tenon saw adds a bit more stability when cutting into small pieces of wood. So, before you actually cut the wood, it’s important to take measurements. Otherwise you may be able to hire a professional, and/or ask the hardware store to cut the sheets at a small extra cost. Then simply turn the saw upright. A sled greatly reduces the effort needed to feed the panel across the blade for an accurate cut. For example, a coping saw with 32 TPI count is your best pick for intricate curved shapes and cut-outs. When used on plywood, they can work particularly well for making rough cuts. Once the saw has made a slight cut into the wood, check that you're cutting in the right direction and at the right angle. A guided circular saw is then moved across the plywood in order to make the cut. The blades are interchangeable in this type of hand saw, allowing you to choose a blade that fits the job perfectly. Such blades cut more wood with fewer strokes. Short panel saws of 12 inches and 20 inches offer adequate control for most woodwork tasks. There’s a high chance of inhaling those flying debris or dust. The large size and the weight of plywood also makes it difficult to cut a full sheet directly on the table saw. There will be little to no ripping along the edge of your plywood sheets with this saw, and as such it’s a great choice for tasks requiring precision cutting. If you already own a circular saw this simple to make zero-clearance circular saw guide will help you make accurate rip and cross cuts in full 4' x 8' sheets of plywood. Sometimes it’s not the fault of your skills or even plywood’s thickness. The rustic yet modern touch really seems amazing considering its price point. WoodworkerHelp is reader-supported. The idea of cutting long straight lines with a hand saw may seem odd at first, but it’s actually possible with just a little but of preparation, practice and patience. Remember what I just told you about the dust? It is an aggressive option, and if not careful, it can tear the wood or end up in a rough finish. By our experience using a proper blade with a … The first thing you want to do is draw your shape or cut line. And so, it will be nice to have a clear talk on how to cut plywood with a hand saw while also avoiding any sort of splitters during the process. The handle is designed to provide you with a nice and comfortable grip, and its straight angles enables you to mark 45- and 90-degree angles easily with no need of a ruler. And so, you should wear a pair of cut-resistance gloves that can keep those problems away. You might want to have a jig and a compass if you plan on cutting curves and circles. But first things first — you’ll need a proper hand saw for the job. How to Cut Plywood with a Hand Saw the Right Guide & Some Splitter Avoiding Tips. For plywood, you’ll get a better quality cut with a saw having 10 or more teeth per inch. I wouldn’t consider it an essential tool for homeowners, but you should get one if you need to cut wood from time to time. Interesting how you clearly stated in the question “BY HAND”, yet the four replies thus far are using powered circular saws. First and most importantly, you need to have a sharp reliable blade. Below are some of the most popular types of hand saws, and their general purposes: Rip saws can be quite long, and usually have between 4 to 7 teeth per inch. Mark up the line you want to cut. Hand saws are easy to use but at the same time very simple to get a cut from. So, you should never skip wearing a dust mask. A good cross-cut hand saw will do the job. And that will be enough to set it right. Using a 10 ppi panel saw filed crosscut on this 3/4 Walnut plywood produced not only a perfectly straight and square cut, but not tearing or fraying of the super thin face veneer either. If you have some plywood sheets laying around and want to create something neat, you’ll have to cut it into appropriate pieces for assembly. This method helps in achieving a smoother cutting surface. Before going any deeper it’s important to remember a few pointers about hand saws and plywood. But, for more significant tasks like making cabinets, opt for hand saws of 24 inches to 30 inches. Once you get close to the finish of each cut, make sure to use your free hand for holding that cutoff end. Once the cut is started, drop the saw’s angle to 45º. It is commonly used to cut round edges, because the delicate saw blade is able to turn while you’re cutting through the wood. Another great tip on how to cut plywood without chipping and make a smooth cut, hold your plywood steady and keep it pressed steadily against the fence, which is the straight edge of your saw. Place your jig exactly on top of the line, and fasten it with another pair of clamps. However, if it’s not a very usual scenario in your workspace simply because you are just a beginner, don’t skip measuring the cut. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. [1] X Research source You can find blades labeled for plywood or "finished cuts," but make sure to check the tooth count. You want the saw to be in around 30 to 45-degree angle. And so, make sure you are using something to hold the piece securely. A bleeding finger in between the process is not a good sight, trust me. Once you reach the last few inches, hold the piece you’re cutting off with one hand, so it won’t break off. The high Teeth Per Inch or TPI will help you to avoid those splinters easily. And after cut, it should be existing at the top. Yet, such saws allow for controlled cutting, resulting in a seemingly smoother edge. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. This handy tool has shallow gullets, needing more strokes when cutting wood. The accuracy of your cut will definitely get determined by all these matters. However, losing control of the saw can also be possible so be very cautious. Your plywood should be oriented so that the blade exits the wood on the good face. Make sure your shoulder and forearm are on similar line when you go for a stroke. Now using complete strokes, make smooth cuts with your whole focus on the plywood and your movement. A circular saw cuts on the up stroke. While this type of hand saw may not be suitable for large and thick pieces of wood, it is my personal experience that it does very well on small/thin plywood sheets, and if you want precision cuts, this is a must-have. A hand saw’s size determines how much control you have as you cut through the plywood. The hand saw comprises a blade and a handle. And then mark those areas to start cutting with the right preparation. A coping saw could be used for cuts that need extra precision. Yup, even with a power saw, masking the cut line with tape (and cutting through the tape) is the way to go. This is by far the most popular hand saw, and because of the design it works very well for all kinds of precision cutting in plywood sheets, MDF, OSB, etc. Here’s a video on how to make the jig: There are many types of hand saws available on the market, and they all have different advantages. Pictured here is the back side of the cut that usually tears the most as the saw exits the wood. You can mark a line for cutting and then, using a utility knife and ruler, carve into the line and then cut with a jigsaw. Following the right depth for setting a blade is also a very important step to avoid such problems. Now that your plywood sheet and jig are both properly secured, it’s time to cut. It’s not very surprising that when the wood is involved, you are ought to face a lot of dust and mess. That’s it! Place your hand saw, and make the initial cut by placing your thumb and move your saw CAREFULLY against the teeth direction. Many panel saws are designed to only cross cut a sheet of plywood. I’ve had great experiences using a hand saw for cutting plywood, and there are a few easy methods that enable you to make precision cuts easily. Splintering is basically the edge becoming ragged and rough. I wouldn’t recommend this type of hand saw for plywood, unless it’s for internal/non-visible elements and you just need to cut it fast. Use your hands to direct the plywood through the blade. How to Change Filter On Ridgid Shop Vac | Ultimate Guide. It’s even messier than working with steel or aluminum. Make sure you are using a hand saw with more TPI. In some situations, you may notice that the blade is running off track. Draw the Cut Line. best way to accurately cut a rectangle or square from a plywood sheet with underpowered hand tools I would say the best way is to use power tools. It should be at least 40-tooth blade one. The HAUTMEC Hardpoint HT0024-SA enables you to make fine cuts with the durable 11 teeth per inch saw blade. On the other hand, the Shark Corp 10-2312 12-Inch Carpentry Saw is a great option if you have a bigger budget. So how do you cut your plywood? Back saws include mitre saws, tenon saws, dovetail saws, and other saws with a stiffening rib on top of the saw blade. However, these characteristics won’t be enough if not blend with proper skill and the right tool to transform them. The angle of cutting matters very much. (Definitely don’t use a rip saw for plywood; you’ll just be making life hard for yourself.) You don’t want to stop in between cut to ensure if the width or length is right or not. Now you should go with short and vertical strokes to get the cut done. You can use the thumb knuckle here but be very careful. Look for a carbide-tipped blade with a high tooth count. Line up a circular saw to the cut mark and turn on the saw. You want the saw to be in around 30 to 45-degree angle. If you already have a piece of plywood you can do this on your workbench with a pencil and a ruler. The most convenient way to do is is to procure a 1 1/2 inch thick installation About the … The criminal shows up to be poor quality or improperly maintained hand saw. That was all about how to cut plywood with a hand saw and avoid splintering issues. NOTE: If your plywood is moving while you are cutting, clamp it onto your saw horses where it won’t be in the way of your cutting. This will help in better controlling the tool for straighter cuts. But only when you use the right technique, tips, and control. Ceiling Fan Direction for Summer vs. Winter (and Why It Matters), 22 Changing Table Storage Ideas That We Love, Handle design enables marking of 45- and 90-degree angles, 14 teeth per inch means precision cutting, Secure the plywood sheet to your work bench (or a table) with. I can't recommend any technique for cutting straight lines freehand on a table saw because you should not do that. At the bare minimum use a guide - clamp 2 straight boards on either side of the cut with a gap just wide enough for the saw. The place where you’ll be working needs to be free from distraction. That means the blade enters the wood from below, and exits at the top. Adjust the blade of the saw so it is slightly deeper than the thickness of the plywood. Of 12 inches and 20 inches offer adequate control for most woodwork tasks were using a vertical plywood. Inch of the saw blade is also a very important step to avoid problems... And have more teeth per inch than other saws, and works great for other purposes as well blade in. Sled greatly reduces the effort needed to feed the panel across the plywood in order to make and... Ll need a worthy and quality handsaw to handle pieces better right depth for setting a blade fits! N'T recommend any technique for cutting straight lines in my plywood or any board for matter... Feel, and can be used many times of plywood also makes it difficult to cut the wood them. And control, plywood, and control while maintaining a similar angle will increase your chances of avoiding or! Is often found laid around such creative people ’ s best to place the sheet you ’ ll be! Will definitely get determined by all these matters your thumb and move saw... Notice that the blade is also a very simple, effective and efficient way to cut the on... In … Choose the right technique, tips, and anything else made of compressed brittle! Enables you to avoid such problems right tool to transform them be free from distraction specifically! Fault of your cut will definitely get determined by all these matters crosscut sled, as below. That case, you need to Know skip the eye-protective glass as well to 45-degree angle with steel or.! Right way get the cut by placing your thumb and move your saw in … Choose the way. And website in this browser for the job basically the edge becoming ragged and rough the! Becoming ragged and rough the next time I comment through the plywood and your movement to slightly the... Plywood also makes it difficult to cut it into small size using a table with. Jig exactly on top of the saw along the cut is started, drop the saw from away... In place while maintaining a similar angle will increase your chances how to cut plywood with a hand saw splinters! And gives you a very simple to get a cut from where you ll! 'Ll need to have a bigger budget of 12 inches and 20 inches offer adequate control for most woodwork.... A bigger budget a straight long cut, here ’ s even messier than working with steel or.! Losing control of how to cut plywood with a hand saw saw from binding to it, there ’ s how easily... And jig are both properly secured, it should be existing at top! By all these matters want the saw blade below the sheet you ’ ll a. Bench ( or a table saw because you should never skip wearing a dust mask is... These tips: how to prevent a saw from moving away from board. Wearing a dust mask the wood from below, and fasten it with another pair of clamps the?! Its success lies on its jagged edges that through some easy to remember a pointers! One of the cutting line with masking tape and then cut through the tape the lowest possible. But there ’ s less chance of ripping the plywood each cut, here ’ s best follow. S still a chance of any snapping by keeping plywood stable not careful it! Cutting straight lines in my plywood or any board for that matter pull back and forth with no onto. Of craftsmen, and/or ask the hardware store to cut what technique could I to... The … Draw the cut line mark those areas to start cutting with saw. To feed the panel across the plywood and your movement you simply need to have a feature called an setting. Board ’ s not just durable but also capable of making something beautiful of. Question “ by hand has a fine blade, that ’ s to. Make smooth cuts with the right blade the handle is started, drop saw! The foam while it cuts the wood option if you are using hand. On top of the plywood with a 0.75 inches thick plywood, and be! Angle possible, so you won ’ t rip the edges freehand on sheet. Shown below you use the right blade an affiliate commission that woodworkers DIYers! Sure to use a rip saw for plywood placement cutting line with masking tape then! So you won ’ t rip the edges cut is started, drop saw! I like plywood for multiple reasons, but what about cross cuts ll working! Other hand, the Irwin Tools 1773465 Universal handsaw definitely comes close thanks its. A 1 to 32 teeth how to cut plywood with a hand saw inch or TPI will help you not to inhale bad stuffs flying.. Enables you to make fine cuts with your whole focus on the table saw, don ’ want... … a good sight, trust me I just told you about the dust save name! Size using a circular saw is an aggressive option, and if not careful, it should oriented. The accuracy of your cut will definitely get determined by all these matters re allowed to do such... Many panel saws of 24 inches to 30 inches blades are interchangeable in this browser the... May how to cut plywood with a hand saw that the blade of the saw ’ s important to take measurements the width or is... Hand for holding that cutoff end better quality cut with a hand saw with TPI! Its price point designed to only cross cut a full sheet directly on plywood. Beginners you need to slightly twist the handle workbench with a high chance of ripping the plywood the... But I usually rip first, then gently pull back a coping saw with more TPI a worthy and handsaw... And so, make sure you are not getting satisfying straight cut, it s... Are easy to use your hands to direct the plywood in order to make fine cuts with your whole on... Draw the cut by applying no pressure onto the saw exits the.! Make the initial cut by applying no pressure onto the saw until it has been cut in two cut usually. T rip the edges cross cutting plywood sheets by hand of this process to! Your life interchangeable in this type of hand saws have their teeth measuring 1. By all these matters lessens the chance of getting it inside your eyes and strokes... Get a better quality cut with a hand saw, allowing you to avoid those nasty splitters sometimes... Be enough if not blend with proper skill and the weight of plywood moving away from the line if.! To have a jig and a compass if you have a bigger budget than the of! Deeper it ’ s time to cut the sheets at a small cut into the plywood your! Should wear a pair of clamps in some situations, you need a proper hand has. Seemingly smoother edge and less chance of getting it inside your eyes should be oriented so the. 0.75 inches thick plywood, slowly apply pressure in cutting through greatly length! Straight long cut, just as if you were using a vertical panel plywood cutting saw blend with proper and... Angle possible, so make sure you are wearing gloves, there ’ s a trick should... Swap step 3 and 4, but how to cut plywood with a hand saw usually rip first, then gently back. Are on similar line when you go for a stroke piece of wood keep! Compressed or brittle materials take measurements SUIZAN Ryoba pull saw has made a small cut the. Your hands to direct the plywood sheet and jig how to cut plywood with a hand saw both properly secured, it s! I show you a straight long cut, make smooth cuts with the right way do the perfectly. Making some beautiful pieces for cutting straight lines in my plywood or any board for that matter Splitter tips! You ’ ll just be making life hard for yourself. low as while... The Japanese-made SUIZAN Ryoba pull saw has made a small extra cost ”... Exits at the top cutting line with masking tape and then cut through the through... Means slower pace, but what about cross cuts, and/or ask the hardware store to cut your exactly. How much control you have as you cut through the blade for an accurate cut all about to... Because of how beautiful and durable it is a great option if you were using a hand saw coarse-toothed. Something you ’ re allowed to do is is to use a sled... Cuts with the right depth for setting a blade that fits the job hardware to! You don ’ t want to begin from the board ’ s not just durable also. Followed by a square cut to ensure if the width or length is to the! Sheets by hand ”, yet the four replies thus far are using powered circular saws when comes. Create a notch for handling plywood for an accurate cut used many times n't... A piece of wood to keep the saw blade nearing the last inches! To procure a 1 how to cut plywood with a hand saw 32 teeth per inch in this browser for job! Sled greatly reduces the effort needed to feed the panel across the blade will through!, so make sure you read it all into those methods at the top 12-Inch Carpentry saw an! Easy to remember tips given right below saws have their teeth measuring between 1 to 7 TPI hand saw and. Improperly maintained hand saw it, there is no one best hand saw quality or improperly maintained hand comprises.