A sawset is used to carefully and accurately bend the teeth of a saw to develop a kerf wider than the saw plate to avoid it binding as the saw passes into and through the cut. The sawset bends the teeth away from the plate, it is used to bend every other tooth in the same direction, and then the alternate teeth the opposite way. One arm of the sawset moves in the same way pliers work, when you squeeze the two handles the “hammer” or tooth setter emerges to force the tooth over.
The numbers on the anvil (wheel) determine the different depths of set, larger saws often need more set than smaller ones. The anvil increases the angle which the tooth is set to each time you turn it.
Select a depth of set and retain the same set throughout the saw setting process. The lower the number on the anvil, the larger the set. Things that can determine what set is used include:
- Moisture content of the wood
- Type of wood
- Thickness of saw plate
- Required fineness of cut