We asked our friend Julie Sanford, metalsmith and owner of Studio JSD to try out the Knew Concepts Saw and share her thoughts. She loves the tight tracking and ease of re-loading. Here’s her rundown:
“I’ve owned the original version of the Knew Concepts Saw Frame with screw tension for several years. When I bought it, I was immediately in love with its modern industrial design and super lightweight frame. The most remarkable difference this frame had over my traditional saw frame is that you didn’t have to push the frame into your sternum to tighten the blade. You tighten the blade by turning a screw at the top of the frame. It took a bit of getting used to loading the blade into the Knew frame. The blade slipped out a lot, and tensioning the blade with the screws was a little tricky too. Once the blade was set, cutting was smooth, quick and efficient.
At first, I really wanted the original Knew Concepts frame to be my new standard, but ultimately, it was just a nice frame in my collection. The little hiccups with setting the blade often interrupted a good workflow, so it never replaced my standard German saw frame at the bench.
I’ve recently had the opportunity to test drive the newer Knew Concept 3″ with Lever Tension and Swivel Blade Clamps, and I have to say, I am very impressed with its performance! This model features a tension lever and a swivel blade. Again, it took some fiddling to get used to the new features, but the written directions were very clear and easy to understand and I was off and sawing in no time.
I was so impressed with the ease of tensioning the blade with the lever.
Once you lock the blade into place with the screws, you just flip the tension bar to tighten the blade. You can adjust how taut the blade is initially, and easily lock each blade to your preset tension.
So, now that I had this new frame figured out, I needed to put it through a bench performance test. I had a sterling swing top bracelet base from Halstead on-hand and some bronze sheet, so I decided to saw a top to complete the bracelet. I chose a pierced bird on a limb design with a contoured leaf edge. Something with moderate detail and tight corners. Here’s what I found using this new frame. Easy loading? Yes. Tight blade? Yes, super tight. Good line tracking? Absolutely, no drifting. Sawing sharp corners? Not a problem, no broken blades. Re-loading the piece for piercing? Fast, and back to the same tension immediately without cracking a rib!
Verdict?I think I could really get used to using the Knew Concepts Lever Tension, Swivel Blade Saw Frame. It has good potential for replacing my standard German saw frame.
I haven’t tried the Swivel Blade feature on a project yet, but, it’s easy to turn the blade in and out of the swivel position and the option is great to have.”
Learn more about sawing with other Halstead educational articles and videos: