Bow Saws

I received this e-mail recently ……….


I saw the web page on steam saws at and wanted to know if you can pass this email and attached photo along to your saw expert.

I was metal detecting on part of the old Biltmore Estate in Asheville, NC and found this b;ade buried about a foot deep. What it left of the blade is 36 inches long. There is a doubler plate on both sides of the tab and they are riveted with two rivets on the blade end. There is a hole about 2 inches from the end of the tab that will accept a bolt or pin. I would like to know what make/model of equipment this came from and a manufacture date range for this equipment.

Larry M
Asheville, NC”

Here’s the pic that came with the e-mail ……… (Click to see full size)

Saw blade found in woods

Saw blade found in woods

As the CPA on the block I hadn’t a clue. So, I put out an all points bulletin to the members asking for help. Aside from the usual smart alec replies there was a view that this might be the blade from a bow saw. I looked up “Bow saws on Wiki”………………….

“…….. A bow saw is a type of frame saw. Its thin blade is held in tension by a frame. In English and American vocabulary it denotes a toothed blade suspended between two long narrow handles called “cheeks” that are supported and separated by a thin stretcher in the center of the handles, making a wide H shape (the cheeks form the uprights of the H, the stretcher the crossbar of the H). The blade is kept in tension with a turnbuckle or a twisted cord that runs parallel to the blade between the two cheeks but on the opposite side of the stretcher. If a cord is used, the cord is twisted with a toggle attached to one loop of the cord, adding tension. The toggle hits the stretcher, which keeps the cord from untwisting.”

In addition to the pics below I found a drawing showing how  one might make one:

How to make a Bow Saw

How to make a Bow Saw

There were quite a few pics illustrating bow saws.

These two photos show a Bow saw being used:

If you have a view/idea please let me  have your tuppence worth.