Recently, I stumbled into a real find at a garage sale. Barb and I were out looking at people’s junk and there it was a ugly painted saw that was done for the owner. I might like landscapes, but what I observed was a nice saw handle and saw plate with almost no wear. So for $3 I took it home and it sat on my drafting table as a painted saw for months.

A couple months later I had gotten sufficiently tired of the oil painting on it and it found itself in the garage being subjected to paint stripper. The stripper took off the painted scene and I soon noticed an etch from the manufacturer on the blade, HSB and Co. and it got more exciting. The painter had the blade sandblasted to remove rust, but the etch was still visible and the blade looked great. Some of the sandblasting work had damaged the handle too, but it wasn’t severe. I felt very fortunate here.

So here is the good news, I rescued from the painters brush a perfectly good saw that had very little use from its owner. The previous owner liked this premium Chicago made saw so much that his name H.M. Simpson was stamped all over the handle, but fortunately for me there is much life left in the saw plate.

After I removed the fall landscape scene and the flat black paint on the back side, I knew I was on the right track. I carefully removed the sandblasting texture from the plate with 220 sandpaper attached to a sanding block. The sanding block helped keep me above the etch and so I could preserve it for some future treatments to darken it. The apple handle was cleaned up of stray paint and then lightly sanded. To even out the color I applied a maple dye, gave it a good coat of boiled linseed oil, added 2 coats of garnet shellac, and then applied wax.

The saw nuts were originally nickel plated and most of that was lost in cleaning it up. I was able to preserve the nickel plating on the medalion.

I am thrilled with the condition of this handsaw, the way it cleaned up, and I can’t wait to sharpen this up and use it.

Thanks for looking!