What Is A Fret Saw (Informative Results You Need)

If you have done any fine carpentry work then you probably know as to what is a fret saw used for. Any projects that you have that require fine cuts, curves in wood, dovetails for drawers, etc., then a fret saw is an ideal tool for this.

Unlocking Precision and Detail: The Fret Saw

In the world of woodworking and craftsmanship, precision is often the hallmark of excellence. When it comes to intricate cuts and delicate designs, the fret saw stands tall as a tool of unparalleled precision and versatility.

What is a Fret Saw?

A fret saw is a fine-toothed, narrow-bladed saw used primarily for intricate cutting work. Its design features a thin, sturdy blade affixed to a C-shaped frame, allowing for easy maneuverability and access to tight spaces. The blade is tensioned within the frame to maintain stability and accuracy during use. Most fret saws have a 5 inch blade, and there are some 3 inch also, plus you can find different depths to the frames as well as some being adjustable so you can chose what saw will best match the project you are working on.

The Art of Fretwork

Fretwork, the art of intricate woodcutting, is where the fret saw truly shines. Its fine blade enables artisans to create elaborate patterns, delicate curves, and detailed shapes with remarkable accuracy. From ornate designs on furniture to delicate wooden ornaments, the fret saw empowers craftsmen to bring their creative visions to life.

Fret Saws

I will mention some fret saws just to give you a better idea of the sizes, tension setup for blades, and weight.

New Concepts 5inch Wood Worker Fret Saw

This is a lightweight saw at 5.2 ounces, and has a blade length of 5 inches. It is supplied with a #7 skip-tooth saw blade that has 15 teeth per inch. The saw blade is very easy to install with screw clamps, and a simple cam lever tensions the saw blade so your ready to cut, The blade can also be turned 45 degrees to the left or right.

This fret saw has high praises but it is expensive in the range of 120 to 160 dollars. There are many cheaper saws but they are not as easy to set up as this one, and this one could be the only one you would ever have to buy.

Olsen Fret Saw

This saw has a 133/4 inch of cutting depth, and takes a blade of 5 inches with the blades having flat ends where they tighten into the saw with clamps. The saw has a weight of 11.4 ounces, and on this saw the handle can be folded under the frame after using it. The saw is priced at around 30 dollars. If your projects do not require a large cutting depth then a smaller depth fret saw might be easier to work with. The blades for this saw are from 10 to 20 dollars for packages of 12 to 36 blades.

Versatility and Application

While its name might suggest a limited use, the fret saw’s versatility extends beyond woodworking. It finds applications in various materials like plastic, bone, and even certain metals such as jewelry making, making it a valuable tool across diverse crafting disciplines.

Mastering the Fret Saw

Using a fret saw requires patience, a steady hand, and a keen eye for detail. The controlled movements and precise cutting technique it demands make it an excellent tool for both seasoned craftsmen and those eager to move into detailed woodworking.

Choosing the Right Blade

Selecting the appropriate blade for your project is crucial. Different blades, with variations in tooth count and thickness, cater to specific cutting needs. Finer blades are suitable for intricate designs, while coarser ones are better suited for rougher cuts, and you will need a specific blade for fine metal work such as jewelry etc.


In the realm of fine woodworking and intricate craftsmanship, the fret saw stands as a testament to precision and artistry. Its ability to create detailed and delicate cuts opens up a world of creative possibilities, allowing artisans to craft intricate designs that captivate and inspire.

Whether you’re an experienced woodworker or a budding craftsman, exploring the world of fret saws can lead to a deeper appreciation for the intricacies of craftsmanship and the art of precision cutting.

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