Guess what I saw?

Is there a fundamental difference between a Jigsaw, and a Sabresaw? I’ve seen both in handheld and table variety, and they seem to be used for the same general purpose. Are there any subtleties I am missing?

Here’s half an answer, anyway. One is a little narrower than the other, allowing for finer work, sharper corners, etc. The problem is I can’t remember which is which. The jigsaw is thinner, I think.

Wait – a quick check of Webster’s makes the distinction that a sabersaw is electrically powered. BUT – it also mentions another synonym, scroll saw and the definition for scroll saw points to yet another candidate, fretsaw.

All of them sound about the same, except that the sabersaw definition included the motor.

In short, it doesn’t sound like there is any real difference any longer, if there ever was one.

he sleeps on that pile/of newspapers/in the corner/and when he
takes off his/shoes you cannot/smell his breath
“king nicky”, archyology
Don Marquis

Originally, a jig saw had a blade attached at both ends (one end typically to a spring mechanism) and was normally table mounted. Because of this mounting the blade could be thin. A sabre saw had a blade that was stiff and looked like a sabre, attached at one end only and was often hand-held. The blade must be thicker or it will bend on the non-cutting stroke. A scroll saw is a jig saw made for doing fine work with a very thin blade capable or tight turns. All these words are jumbled now, some people call the popular hand-held sabre saws jig saws.

At least we can still agree about what a band saw is.

Now…lets discuss rip, crosscut and coping.

In history they will not fill their heads with battles, nor in geography with fortresses, for it becomes them just as little to reek of
gunpowder as it does the males to reek of musk.

                     - Immanuel Kant

That makes a lot of sense frolix, that the sabre name came from the only-hold-it-on-one-end-like-a-sword blade. It’s consistent with my dictionary’s hand-held, electrically powered definition as well, since that device would obviously use such a blade.

New question – does the fret in fretsaw (used for fretwork, I presume) have any relation to the frets on the neck of a guitar? I suppose you would use a fretsaw or something similar to cut the grooves in which the guitar frets reside, but it’s a bit of a reach to name them after the tool. Does anyone have the straight dope?

Maybe it’s just me, but I simply had to check out a thread entitled “Guess what I saw” started by a guy named Omniscient…

Sure, I’m all for moderation – as long as it’s not excessive.

Pluto, there seems to be two uses of the term fretsaw. At this site:

A fretsaw is used to cut the fret grooves in a guitar, but the saw looks more like a backsaw.

I found these definitions:

Coping Saw: A fine-bladed frame saw used for fretting out thin-section ground wood and thick veneers. A good general-purpose saw for making up ground-works, boxes, frames and so on. The blade can be quickly removed and refitted, so this is the perfect saw for ground work and for working tight corners and curves.

Fretsaw Belongs to the same family as piercing and coping saws. They have “G” frames and flexible, removable blades; a good saw for cutting holes and curves in thin section plywood and for cutting veneers. In use, the frame is guided and steadied with one hand, while the handle is pushed and maneuvered with the other. See also coping saw and piercing saw.

At this site:

Which indicates that it is an alternate form of a coping saw. I also found a site that sold fretsaw blades, which appeared to be coping saw blades with a different shape of teeth. Fretwork is a type of marquetry with a repeated pattern, maybe that’s the link to the guitar fret, or maybe they have a common root. I’ll keep looking.