Whether you are a woodworker or a beginner doing some DIY woodwork at home or learning dovetail joints, you need the right tool to do the job. You can’t pick the best dovetail saw for beginners if you don’t have any prior experience in using saws for cutting woods. Woodworking is an art, but it requires expertise and the right tools to cut clean and precise joints.
Most students ask about the best dovetail saw for beginners before they actually start learning woodworking. I tell them if you are learning to cut through woods and dovetails, you can have any good saw to learn and practice in the start.
Quality dovetail saws exist, and I remember I used a couple of them early in the days at Woodworking Institute when I was doing my certification. Fortunately, there are plenty of options you have got today. Manufacturers are making a range of sophisticated dovetail saws that works pretty awesome.
The abundance of dovetail saw makes it a problem to choose the right one and which features to prefer when buying a saw. Not saws are good to make dovetail joints and you will need a specialized dovetail saw to cut with accuracy and make them reflect your craftsmanship.
A dovetail saw is a hand tool used to cut interlocking notches, called dovetails. The blade of the saw comes with fine teeth and cuts on the pull stroke which makes it possible for an experienced user to make very tight-fitting dovetails with little effort.
The other advantage dovetail saws have over crosscut handsaws is that the rip profile of the teeth makes it possible to cut across end grain with minimal tear-out.
To use a dovetail saw, hold one hand on top of the handle and place your index finger behind the upper arm (blade) for support; this also helps you control how deep your cuts are. Holding down on top of the blade applies downward pressure while pushing down toward the handle applies forward force.
Let’s find out some of the best deals on a dovetail saw on a budget:
Best Dovetail Saw for Beginner
1. Rob Cosman’s Dovetail Saw
If you want an exercise and detail card on wood and don’t know no which saw works the best for the purpose, this is the best tool to use. Rob Cosman Dovetail saw is an excellent choice for quick and precise cuts.
This saw cuts smoothly and gives wood the finish it needs. We recommend this saw for cutting joints and thick wood pieces. It doesn’t make any compromise on the quality and finishing of the cuts.
Rob Cosman’s dovetail carries an ergonomic build and relaxed ankles that make the job easier. This saw has small teeth, which take less time to cut through the wood.
Unlike traditional Saws, it is comfortable, flexible, and requires less energy to run across the wood. People don’t need to struggle with straight cuts as it offers excellent stability and deep cuts quickly.
Its pistol handle gives us a better grip and makes cutting easy due to its unique design. These saws are tested by the company and present the best craftsmanship. This is the best dovetails saw on budget and will help to accomplish all cutting jobs.
This is the best dovetail saw for beginners who just started learning to cut wood and try hard to make straight and efficient lines on wood. This saw really helps to learn the technique of cutting and how to cut wood quickly.
|It is lightweight and sturdy
This saw have 22 tpi to cut precisely
Easy to use and smooth cutting
One of the best woodworking tools to have
|Some people find its size a little bigger than standard saws
2. Crown Dovetail Saw
It is another best cutting saw for wood cutting and incorporates a carbon blade which makes it easy. This saw is capable of cutting wood up to a depth of 2.25 inches. It is the best dovetail saw that can cut in-depth wood pieces and works very well.
The blade comes with a thickness of 0.02 inches or 0.45mm, making it relatively stable to use on the wood, and doesn’t bend when you exert pressure. With this saw, you can use this saw for straight-line cutting and wood joints as well. Since the saw features a rosewood handle that gives it a firm grip and better control for users.
Crown Dovetail saw incorporates a high carbon steel blade, the dovetail saw is efficient and cut easily. You have to make short pull strokes with this saw for accurate cutting, otherwise, it is hard to get accuracy with longer strokes.
It is an extremely robust saw. A bit heavy, but this nevertheless gives it a significant amount of support, facilitating the cutting work. The wooden pistol handle is comfortable. The weight of this saw allows realizing dovetails and fine cuts in cabinet making and restoration of furniture.
|Carries an exceptional quality build and great control
Its replaceable blades are easy to change
Its thick blade cuts straight
Best saw for beginners
A high quality saw with a good grip requires a ‘break-in’ for the saw and the user.
|With longer cuts, it causes erratic cuts
3. Irwin Dovetail Saw
Irwin Dovetail saw is exclusively designed for precise dovetail joints and all is done due to a reversible blade. This saw adds a spring-loaded blade that allows people to operate the saw single-handed.
It is easy to use due to its ergonomic build and cuts through most of the woods with precision. We see this saw equips a Pro-Touch handle, enabling users to cut the wood quickly and conveniently.
The 10″ blade length and 2″ blade thickness are sufficient for a beginner to pro-level cutting jaws. The saw makes cutting a quick job, allowing users to finish the job quickly and taking less time for most jobs. Its easy grip doesn’t let you feel fatigued when using it in longer sessions.
With its sharp teeth, it can cut through any type of wood. Its symmetrical teeth can cut in multiple directions. It’s super sharp and just rip through the thick stuff quite flexibly. If you really want neat cuts then this is the best dovetail saw you can rely upon.
Suppose you want to purchase the best Dovetail saw at a very reasonable price. You will get no match for this IRWIN dovetail saw. The best Dovetail saw comes along with the best combination of high quality and price.
Specifically, the brand is IRWIN, which manufactures the best Dovetail saw in a very lightweight. The weight is about 1.6 ounces (0.1 pounds). You will love to perform your work with this dovetail saw.
More importantly, the total product dimension is 2.5 x 3.3 x 17.1 inches. Furthermore, this best IRWIN dovetail saw is manufactured with steel material. High quality material will assist you in performing any task related to wood.
In particular, this best dovetail saw uses a spring-loaded and reversible blade that supports you in working both suitable and left while cutting.
Do you want to know something more exciting about this? Yes, according to my deep research, I realized that this IRWIN dovetail saw is the Pro touch handle that will support you on each jump. This additional feature makes it unique from others.
Besides, the total length of the blade is 10 inches, and the thickness of the blade is 2” inches.
As you know, nobody is perfect in this world, and the same is with products. While having lots of positive features, this best IRWIN dovetail saw has some average aspects also, the handle is average. It is not preferred use for a high job.
|Top quality saw to cut most woods.
Sharp symmetrical blades cut smoothly
It functions more as a jamb saw than advertised
|It functions more as a jamb saw than advertised
4. Zona Dovetail Saw
If you prefer a hand tool for your woodworking project, then a thick blade saw would work best for the purpose. Zona Dovetail Saw is the deal in the town. This saw makes strong push cuts on all types of woods while exerting little pressure. The saw blade has more than the standard length which allows it to make powerful strokes on wood.
This saw blade has a thick kerf that leaves a deep impression on the surface of the wood and helps in making straight cuts. The saw equips a wooden handle for comfortable holding and offers a strong grip on your hand. With Zona dovetail saw you don’t feel tired in long hours cutting jobs.
This saw has sharp long teeth to make accurate trimmings on any type of wood. Expect deep cutting with stability and can make push strokes comfortably. It works to cut fret slots as well, this can be used for straight cuts, crosscuts, and slow cuts.
|Cut quickly with ease
The great value of money
|It takes a lot of force for deeper cuts
5. SUIZAN Japanese Pull Saw
When buying the best Dovetail Saw, you will find no match for this SUIZAN Japanese Pull saw. In contrast, the best thing about this saw is it cuts the material by dragging, also famous as pull saws.
Firstly, the most important thing about any Dovetail Saw is its hand. You will be amazed to know that the blade and hand of this Suizan Japanese pull saw are about 9.5 inches along with a double edge.
Secondly, the weight of this Japanese pull saw is about 0.35, which makes it different from other saws. You will love to carry it just because of its lighter weight.
Thirdly, this SUIZAN Japanese pull saw is famous because of its top quality. Overall the length of this saw is about 24 inches. If you want to perform any wood task, this saw is most recommended for you.
Apart from that, the blade is very much sharper, manufactured from Japanese steel, which is well-known for its quality. It does not matter if you are an expert, a user, or a beginner. It will assist you in both terms.
Apart from this, the Japanese dovetail pull saw has some drawbacks, and you will not find any battery or it. Furthermore, there is no discount from the manufacturer.
|Provides straight cuts
|Recommended for light work
|Easy to transport
6. SUIZAN Japanese Dozuki Dovetail
Suppose you are looking for the best quality dovetail, which also comes at a very affordable price. You will find no other saw like SUIZAN Japanese Dozuki Dovetail. Cutting dovetail is really simple when you have suizan saw in hand.
Apart from all this, the Japanese Dozukis is like a pull saw. This will cut the material through pushing. You will not need to worry to carry this as it comes in very lightweight.
Besides, the Dozuki Dovetail saw demands for less power. It is highly manufactured of Japanese steel. More importantly, the length of the blade is about 6 inches. At the same time, the overall size of this Dovetail is approximately 15.5 inches.
Furthermore, Japanese Dozukis provide you with an effortless and accurate cut, as per your desire, and don’t need to exert more pressure while cutting wood or joints.
The Dozuki Dovetail is famous because of its excellent thin blades and 6 inches perfect handling size. The blade thickness is about 0.12 inches. You will love to carry this as your favorite Dovetail.
Compared to other dovetails, these best Dozuki Dovetail blades are very easy to separate and interchangeable.
Apart from that, you will be amazed to know about its weight, as this Dovetail comes in a very lightweight of about 5.6 ounces.
While having all features and specifications, this Japanese Dozuki dovetail has some average aspects also. This is not recommended if you want to gift it to your loved ones.
|Great thin kerfs
|It has a short plastic handle
7. KERYE Hand Saw, Japanese Pull Saw
Suppose you are looking for high-quality bled, which comes along with sharp and burned teeth. You will be amazed to know that this KERYE hand saw comes with the features mentioned above.
More importantly, the size of the blade of this KERYE hand saw is about 9.5 inches. As far as the blade’s shape is concerned, the manufacturer designed this saw in a bilateral condition.
Besides, the double edge makes it extra unique. This means a double-edged saw consists of two saws in just one. That will require less energy and power.
Specifically, the brand is KERYE which provides a very sharp woodworking saw. Moreover, the blade material is SK5, which is a very high-quality material. Its long handle makes cutting wood and joints an effortless task.
Furthermore, the KERYE best dovetail saw has distinguished features from others. The replaceable blades provide you with an easy replacement, and the fixing clamp is in-built with KY01.
In particular, this best Dovetail comes in a very lightweight of about 13.9 ounces. Apart from this, you will get two screws, 1 wrench, 1 fixing clamp, 1 front cover of the handle, and one user manual.
Eventually, this Dovetail saw also has some average aspects. This saw is not multitasking and is highly recommended for just woodwork.
|The blade is very much flexible
|You can only use it for wood-working
|Great saw for cutting
|Light and sharp saw
|Different from the previous one
8. Dozuki Z Saw
Dozuki Z is a woodworker’s recommended saw for newbies due to its handedness and an extremely sharp blade that helps to make the finest dovetails cuts. This is one of the best hand tools when we compare it with other Japanese saws because its blade doesn’t flex and makes cutting wood easy.
This saw works well both on hardwood and softwood, this is ideal for dovetail for craftsman’s work and carpentry. It can be used for jigs due to its small size and proves very useful for carpenters.
Its impressive lightweight makes this a perfect tool for woodworking projects and can be used for any type of cut or size of wood. Dovetailing and crosscutting require great precision and skills, but you would also need a good quality saw to do the job. This is a great saw on a budget and it is quite convenient to change its blade, unlike other saws.
|Its blade is quite rigid
|Its grip is weak
|Make perfect cuts
|Easy to Use
We have researched and worked out the best dovetail saw in a budget. Though you can buy any of these great saws according to your budget. All these options will make cutting jobs easy and convenient.
All the saws mentioned above have wonderful features, quality, and finishing, they are affordable and make your work easier.
How to Maintain Saw Blades?
Maintaining A Saw
It is a good idea to keep a thin coating of oil or silicone on your saw blade when you are not using it. This will limit the risk of rust forming. The blade is made of carbon steel, without the addition of anti-rust elements.
Sharpening A Saw
The steel for your saw blade can be sharpened. It is tough (50-52 HRC). It will keep sharpening for a long time. If you need to sharpen, you can simply do it yourself with a little practice. Lie-Nielsen uses an extra-thin 130 mm (5 “) file to file the teeth. You can do the same if you are good at adjusting.
Take fine, straight pieces of wood. They will serve as jaws mounted on the jaws of your vice. Clamp your blade on your vise fitted with these jaws. The bottom of the slots between the teeth should be flush with the top of the jaws. A dovetail saw and a tenon saw can interchangeably used for cutting joints and dovetails.
Using your file, give just one stroke (again, slowly, firmly, evenly, along the entire length of the file) on each tooth. Note the small groove the file leaves in the wood of the jaws. This is a good indication that allows you to measure the depth to which you are filing.
The teeth are so fine that no more than one pass is needed per slot. If you consistently use this method, you should never have to grind or re-cut your teeth. Of course, the tail saw teeth of the dovetail are sharpened with a profile for cutting wood wire. So you can sharpen all the teeth of your blade from the same side.
The thickness of the blade (on the teeth, including setting) should not exceed 0.6 mm (0.024 “) to 0.70 mm (0.027”) when properly set. This slight sharpening is what makes the saw cut and follow the kerf so well. If this is not done correctly, you will immediately see a sharp decrease in performance.
The ultimate test in controlling the cut’s quality is to see how the saw behaves on the job. Take a piece of wood and give it a try. The saw should slide through the wood without snagging. It must not vibrate; jump in its kerf. You should be able to “drive” the saw effortlessly.
There should not be too much “play” between the wood and the blade … neither too little (tightening) nor not enough (no cutting precision). If one of these faults exists, it is necessary to restart the setting by increasing it (if the saw sticks, for example) or reducing it if the kerf has become too broad.
If the saw moves away from the path, the side that deviates the farthest has too much edging. A simple remedy is to use a medium grit sharpening stone very lightly on the defective face’s edge. Just rock it and make a test cut again.
In principle, one or two stone passes are sufficient to correct the problem. Be careful not to remove too much material. You could transfer the problem to the other side until there is no more backwash to cut. Once you’ve learned from your mistakes and found the right setting, make a note for future reference on that particular saw.
The above-listed dovetail saws truly fulfill your needs to cut wood joints, dovetails, or other precision cuts. The price range of the aforementioned saws is affordable and top quality is guaranteed. Give them a try if you are looking for the best dovetail saw on a budget.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Is The Difference Between A Dovetail Saw And Tenon Saw?
Saws have different types like Tenon saw, Dovetail saw, Mitre Saw, Sash, Razor Saw, Douzki, and Gent’s saw. As the name of the dovetail saw describes, it cuts dovetails, a small-sized backsaw is used to cut the joints. These saws equip more teeth and are capable of doing precise cuts and making narrow kerf. This tool is helpful in cross-cutting and gives efficient cutting.
On the other hand, tenon saws are midsize and help in cutting joints in woodworking and carpentry. They usually carry rip-filled teeth and work fine for woodworking and other materials. Tenon saw consist of 13 teeth per inch and make accurate cuts.
What Saw to Use for Dovetails?
Any good fame dovetail saw is the best tool for cutting dovetails. It’s a very specific tool that can’t be swapped out with other joinery saws. I know, I’ve tried. But finding the right one is half the battle. Some are made from cheap thin steel, and the blade bends at the slightest provocation. Some dovetail saws are too short. Others have too high of a tooth count for use with softwoods like pine or poplar. So it’s important to get one that’s properly sized, tempered, sharpened, and polished.
A few years ago I started making small boxes out of aircraft plywood. These little boxes have a lot going for them, not the least of which is their strength and stability. In addition to being rock-solid, they have an attractive, smooth matte finish that looks nice but isn’t slippery or too shiny. Each box requires six dovetails. I use a dovetail saw to make the cuts, which builds muscle memory that’s important to me. It enables me to cut precise joints time after time without having to stop and think about where the blade needs to go next.
When would you use a dovetail saw?
A dovetail saw is used to cut the dovetails at the end of the board. These joints are typically stronger than other types of joints and are widely used in drawer construction. There are lots of different styles of these saws available with different features (see below), but they all work more or less the same way.
You place the board to be cut in a saw-vise or some other way to secure it, and then you pull the saw towards you to make the cut. This requires that you keep the face of the saw flat on your cutting surface, which prevents tear out. For really close cuts, pulling the saw towards you can be hard on your hands, and some people recommend cutting from both sides, which will give you more control over the saw.
The dovetails may be cut on the face or edge of a board; if they’re on the face, then I find it’s easy enough to keep them near-flush with the surface as this leaves room for chisel work. If you want to cut them on an edge, then you’re going to have less room to work with and thus your saw cuts are going to be deeper.
Once you’ve got the dovetails cut, it’s a simple matter of knocking out the waste between them with a chisel or chopping away the ends from either side if they’re on the face of the board.