The scroll saw, known for its slow cutting speed and relative safety compared to other power tools, is often used for delicate woodworking tasks. However, the tool still carries risks due to the close proximity of the user’s hands to the blade and the high level of manual skill and focus required. Over-cutting or deviating from the cut line by even a small amount can result in failure of the piece. Blade selection and setup is crucial, with factors such as blade size, tooth direction, and the ability to clear sawdust all playing a role. The author notes that over-cutting is the greatest risk they face when using the scroll saw to create 3D jigsaw puzzles.
- The scroll saw is considered a safer power saw as it cuts slowly and requires the user’s hands to be a safe distance from the blade, but the close proximity required for delicate work and the high level of manual skill and focus needed can present risks.
- The small size and delicate nature of most scroll-sawn parts mean that even a small deviation from the cut line can result in the failure of the part, requiring good lighting, steady hands, patience, and the right blade selection and setup.
- Choosing the right blade for scroll saw work is crucial as it needs to cut cleanly without burning and provide sufficient control for intricate cuts, with considerations including the size and fragility of the blade, the size of the teeth and their ability to clear sawdust, and the thickness of the material being cut.
“On a scroll saw, the delicate nature of the work that makes the scroll saw the best choice usually puts the user’s hands very near the blade – zero to six inches away, let’s say. The other risk inherent with the scroll saw is the high amount of manual skills and focus required to manoeuvre the material through the blade. However, due to the small, delicate nature of most scroll-sawn parts, a small over-cut or deviation from the cutline of 1/8 inch (or less) can be the difference between success and failure of the part.”
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