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How to Use a Coping Saw Safely

Updated July 20, 2017

Coping saws are widely used for making cuts in wood or plastics. These adjustable saws come in the form of a blade attached to either end of a C-shaped metal frame and are held by a wooden handle. One of the benefits of a coping saw is that the blade is thin and narrow, allowing for sharper (small-radius) cuts. Use a coping saw safely by clamping or placing your wood securely and applying the right pressure to the cut.

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  1. Mark the cutting area on a piece of wood with a stencil and pencil.

  2. Lock your wood securely into a bench clamp or place it flat onto the surface of a bench, allowing the cutting area to hang over the edge of the bench.

  3. Place your blade against the wood (with the saw in the vertical position) and begin your cut, applying pressure on the pull stroke only. Relieve pressure on each push stroke.

  4. Turn the frame with the handle while continuing to cut steadily to change the direction of your cut.

  5. Tip

    Cut mouldings and other pieces of trim without the use of a clamp (and at various angles) only after you have practised with the coping saw and have achieved a steady stroke technique.


    Wear safety goggles when using a coping saw.

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Things You'll Need

  • Stencil
  • Pencil
  • Bench or bench clamp

About the Author

Kenny Soward writes for various online publications, covering topics from physical fitness to religion. He has also published several short stories. Soward holds a B.A. in communications.

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