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Working without a scroll saw

Hello everybody


I hope you’re all enjoying the holidays.


I’ve been carving for a few months now, and Mary cuts out all of the work I’ve seen on the scroll saw. I don’t own a scroll saw. An alternative would be a coping saw or fret saw, but it’s not realistic (to me) with how long those tools take to use, especially in stock 3/4+.

Does anyone work on non-relief pieces without cutting out the shape first, and simply carve out the shape as they’re working?

Side Question

Does anyone know how pieces that we would rough-out on a scroll/band saw were historically prepared?



Hi Jake, You can also use a jig saw that is hand held, but these usually don't make as smooth of a cut. It's quicker than a fret saw, doesn't require the space that a scroll saw needs, and is reasonably priced.

You certainly can carve the shape as you're working, but if you are wanting to remove the background around the carving, it's an incredibly long-winded process, when a saw will do it much quicker. You can use the process of outlining the design with a v-chisel, and then lower the background completely. But again, the whole purpose of cutting out the shape is to eliminate this step and get right into the carving.

Historically fret saws were used, or foot petalled scroll saws.

I hope this helps.