Dovetail making is the trickiest part of any woodworking, so as finding a good dovetail saw. As a beginner, with budget constraints, getting a good quality dovetail saw becomes a struggle. The saw sold on a cheap price in the local stores often makes the cuts inaccurate and ruins the total workpiece. On the other hand, the expensive dovetail saw seems untouchable for an excessive price.
So, we tried to make the struggle easier for beginners. We listed some awesome dovetail saw that are spectacular in cutting fine and precise on the other hand, budget-friendly as well. Some are rather expensive, these are for those who don’t hesitate to spend on their tools. Besides, it also helps to get the idea of a professional dovetail saw that you can use later.
See Our Top 8 Dovetail Saws for Beginner
1. SUIZAN Dozuki Dovetail Pull Saw
- 6 Inch pull saw;
- Replaceable blade.
Dozuki saws are the most preferred as a dovetail saw because of its ultra-fine tooth setting. If you are a fan of using pull saws, then you should go for this one. The 6-inch blade with 30 TPI blade is the perfect blade for cutting through any soft or hardwood cleanly and accurately.
The thin kerf blade with flexible teeth makes all the difference in performance. Ths saw blade is small, so beware of the cutting capacity of this saw. For larger cuts, for example of a 4x4 piece, you have to work with something bigger than this. There is also an 8-inch Dozuki saw available on the same link. Click the link to get the desired one. The saw blade can be replaced and customized. This is another advantage of this saw.
- The blade doesn’t bind up;
- Thin kerf;
- Stiff blade with flexible teeth.
- Limited cutting capacity.
2. SUIZAN 9.5 Inch Folding Dozuki Dovetail Saw
- Folding design;
- 9.5 inches blade.
Talking about a larger dovetailing saw, this one comes to my mind. It is the same saw in a larger size. Moreover, the folding design makes it even handier and easier to store. The blade folds into a gap in the handle. So that the blade is protected from other tools in your toolbox and retains its sharpness for a longer period of time.
For the larger size, you will have to pay a little extra compared to the former one. Again, this is a pull saw and comes with a thin, razor-sharp blade. You can always replace the blade when needed. For fine carpentry, there is not any competitor which can beat Dozuki saws.
- Space-saving and portable design;
- Razor-sharp blade.
3. IRWIN 7-1/4-Inch Dovetail Saw
- 22-pt. tooth count, 7-¼-inch blade length;
- Suitable for trimming, flush cutting, detailing, and dovetail cutting.
Actually, Irwin has made this saw for making windows. Hence, it is very popular among contractors and homeowners. The 25 TPI tooth set is quite handy for dovetail making as well. Other than this, you can also make clean and precise detailed work on any workpieces.
This saw is very reasonably priced; that’s why I chose this for beginners who are mastering their dovetailing skills. The blade is replaceable and the spare blade is also available from Irwin. Other than that, the saw handle is made of plastic and for me, it was very slippery. For mastering dovetail skills, this is a fair deal.
- Replaceable blade;
- Versatile use.
- Slippery handle.
4. Zona Thick Dovetail Saw for Beginners
- 8 inch, 18 TPI saw blade;
- 1-3/4-Inch cutting depth;
For beginners, a thick kerf saw works best for dovetailing. It makes it easier to use a fret saw for perpendicular cutting. Besides, a thick blade less likely binds up during the cutting process. This is an 18 TPI blade saw which will work on any fine detailing cuts including tricky little dovetailing.
This Zoza saw is made in the USA. so, you can be assured about its superior quality and performance. The low price may make anyone confused about the quality, but the one I used lasted long. The cutting depth is quite narrow, so you can only use this for small to medium workpieces. Other than that, this is a nice professional grade saw that a beginner can also use.
- Super hard blade;
- Suitable for beginners;
- Works on fine detailing.
- Not found.
5. Two Cherries 10-Inch Brass Back Dovetail Saw
- 10 inch 15 TPI saw;
- 2 inches depth of cut.
If the former Zona saw seems small for your job, you can get this one from Two Cherries. The cutting depth is up to 2 inches. While making dovetails to a larger piece, the higher cutting depth and the thick brass back helps to keep the saw straight and stable throughout the cutting process. The saw is equipped with a hardwood handle for a tight and non-slip grip.
The saw blade has a 15 TPI design but can be reshaped and resharpened multiple times. The 10-inch length of the blade needs fewer passes to cut through materials. For professional-grade dovetailing, this saw will last for years to come. For beginners, this is an affordable choice to get more precise dovetails.
- Brass spine for stability;
- Superior quality;
- Suitable for professionals as well.
- Not found.
6. Razorsaw 9-1/2" Wide Blade Dovetail
- 9 ½-inch blade;
- 1-1/2" cutting depth.
As a beginner, this saw can be considered as an investment. The saw has a replaceable blade and you can interchange several blades with the same handle. Of course, it will be more cost-effective as you are only taking the blades, not the entire saw. However, this Japanese saw has a 9.5-inch tapered blade. So, the cutting edge and depth are not the same throughout the blade. The maximum cutting depth will be 1-½ inches, which is great for dovetail and joinery making.
It is a pull saw and makes professional-grade cuts on various wooden materials. Once you get used to this saw, you will never want to use any other saw for precise dovetail making anymore. All over the world, this saw is very popular among professionals for cabinetry, furniture work, trim carpentry, and so on.
- Replaceable blade;
- Suitable for deep dovetail cutting;
- Sturdy spline for stability.
7. SUIZAN Ryoba Double Edge Pull Saw for Woodworking
- 2 in 1 saw design;
- 9.5-inch blade, 9 TPI, and 15 TPI on two edges.
The saw design is spectacular. There are different tooth settings on different edges. It saves users from buying multiple saw and spare blades. One blade is enough to make rough cuts and fine cuts on wood materials. All in all, the blade can be resharpened manually so that you can use it on uncountable projects in the future.
The rattan wrapped handle is the signature design of Japanese pull saws. It resembles a samurai sword to me. But the handle length is way too long for this saw. To make a fine dovetail on a smaller project, the extra-long handle may cause interruption. This pull saw cuts material like butter. Even if you are a beginner, the dovetails you will be making will look like professional work.
- multipurpose ;
- Can be resharpened.
- Extra-long handle.
8. Gyokucho Joinery Saw for Beginner’s Fine Work
- 1-½-inch cutting depth;
- 9-½-inch blade length.
21 TPI blade is amazing in making joinery by tenon cut and dovetails. 21 TPI blade is hard to find in a usable quality because most of these start losing teeth or sharpness after a few uses. But this one will keep surprising you with its unmatched performance. It is a large saw, hence, works best on large workpieces.
If you intend to get a Japanese saw and have a reluctant budget, then get this one. As a beginner, the price range may seem a bit high and out of reach, but as you master your skill and get professional, this saw will not leave your side. The spline serves stiffness whilst the blade is flexible. Together, this saw blade cuts fine pieces seamlessly.
- Rigid spline for stability;
- Good for dovetail and tenon cuts;
- Long-lasting sharpness.
- Very expensive.
Why Dovetail Saw is Required
To make furniture, cabinets, and any other carpentry, where wood pieces need to be joined together, a dovetail saw is a compulsory tool. Any wooden furniture may fail if the join is not done properly. Cutting dovetail is tricky; one has to cut the piece crosscut and rip cut manners. In fact, some pieces need to cut diagonally. So a general-purpose saw will not make the same fine and seamless finish as a dovetail saw.
The dovetail saw always cuts fine and smooth no matter in which pattern it is cutting. On the other hand, a universal or all-purpose saw works best on either ripping or crosscutting. Do you want to make flawless joints? Get a dovetail saw today if you want to value your time and effort you spend on woodworking.
How to Select a Dovetail Saw
Just like creating dovetail joinery, choosing a saw is equally hectic. There are few things about the dovetail saws that affects the performance. Those things are elaborated here so that you can keep these in mind before purchasing your saw.
A dovetail saw has a higher TPI count. If you use hardwood, then the higher the tooth count, the finer the cut will be. Along with the tooth setting, the material if the blade is also important. A hardened blade keeps the tooth sharper for longer and can cut rip, crosscut, or diagonal on any wooden material.
Japanese saws are best for dovetailing but these are pull stroke designs. If you are not comfortable with it, then you can consider a push stroke dovetail saw of similar blade design.
The size of the blade determines the cutting depth. So. use the right size that can serve your purpose. I don’t recommend getting an over large saw because, on tiny workpieces, these will create trouble.
While using, check for the sharpness of the blade. A saw, which is used for fine detailing or joinery must have to be razor-sharp. Take a saw that retains its sharpness for a long time and can be resharpened or replaced. Because a saw with a blunt and permanent blade is useless.
Now you have the idea that Japanese pull saw is the best in this dovetail making game and they are unbeatable. We listed some western-style push saw here for those who are not very comfortable about using pull saw with a long handle.
However, for fine dovetailing, the sawtooth has also to be fine and sharp. To keep it sharp, never throw your saw inside of a toolbox unprotected. Use a scabbard, blade protector, or a sheath to save the teeth. If you can’t use any of those, try hanging the saw from a hook so that it won’t get in contact with anything else. Hopefully, cleanliness and maintenance will make your saw last long.
Last Updated on January 1, 2021 by John Dylan
I am John Dylan. I have a clear experience about different types of tools since my childhood. I start my career as a handyman then I also work as a plumber, electricians. At one point I noticed that people struggle to find quality tools.
So I started to research and explore different tools. I try to present a proper information about any tools I use. Hope my attempt help you!