A stairsaw has been on my to-do list for some time. I built this one over the past two weekends, about 6 hours in all.

The drive to build one increased recently after I completed a sliding dovetail plane. These two tools are meant to work hand-in-hand. For those unfamiliar with a stairsaw, they were used to cut the housings for stairs before the advent of the electric router. These days they are used for cutting the sidewalls for dados and sliding dovetails.

The blade has been filed rip as I want to use it with minimal set so that it can run along a fence.

It is 10 1/2" long. The design allows the blade to extend and retract into the Jarrah body. It should be able to cut a sliding dovetail at least 1" deep.

A Question: I was thinking of 10-12 tpi. I believe that more typically a stairsaw is about 8 tpi. And rip or crosscut?

The design is a little different from the typical stairsaw. Not just that it is very Gothic! I wanted something longer (blades are usually about 6" long) and with a deeper blade to use against a guide (angled for a 1:6 dovetail).

Derek Cohen

January, 2006