The Arc Saw

The skilled art of marquetry dates back to Roman times. However, it wasn’t introduced into London until the mid-17thCentury and didn’t really become popular until around the 1760’s when it was incorporated into the works of the likes of Thomas Chippendale, William Ince and John Mayhew. Normally wood, veneers can however take the form of mother-of-pearl, bone, ivory, brass and other fine metals. Myself and Shane have been lucky enough to get close up to Thomas Chippendale’s most famed pieces at ‘Harewood House’ and have therefore witnessed this exquisite craft in detail and at its best. Originally the veneers on these masterpieces would’ve been a rainbow of vibrant colours, and whilst they have stood the test of time the colours have naturally faded and changed with age and the elements. 

With decades of experience fellow Yorkshireman, Jack Metcalfe is an expert marqueteur and one of the UK’s most educated people on 18th Century Marquetry and in particular on the work of Chippendale and his artisans. Jack himself has built replicas of some of the finest pieces of Chippendale’s work including the most famed ‘Diana & Minerva Commode’ Last year Jack commissioned a bespoke Arc Saw from us in both his and Chippendale’s favourite wood for marquetry– Purpleheart. Since receiving his saw, Jack has taken pleasure in using it, and I’m told that it may have also gained a starring role in some filming he has been involved in for the BBC, likely to be shown later this year. Will it make the cut (pardon the pun!) We’ll have to wait and see…

Simply and aptly named due to its curved blade, The Arc saw is a beautiful tool which will make the art of inlaying and veneering a pure joy. It’s uniquely designed upturned handle can be made in a premium wood of your choice and ensures that your knuckles don’t get in the way when using the saw.  With an exceptionally fine profile and having no set and cutting on either the pull or push stroke, The Arc cuts using a rolling motion and the user is able to maintain great control. Another great feature of this nimble little saw is that you can cut out sections and not always have to work from end to end thus allowing you to inlay a small section. Super for cutting to a point, this backed veneer & inlaying saw is highly tensioned. It is therefore rigid, and having a fine kerf one can slice some thin cuts that are notably smooth straight off the saw.

Whether you are a beginner or up there with the likes of internationally renowned marqueteur Yannick Chastang, the Arc will certainly put a happy arc on your face!

  • Versatile Veneer & Inlaying Saw 

  • Tapered semi-symmetrical octagonal handle in a choice of high-grade timbers

  • Fluted brass back 

  • Stamped ‘LONDON’ & ‘S SKELTON’

  • 3” curved blade

  • 0.012” Plate thickness 

  • 19ppi / 18tpi Rip 

  • No set

  • Cost £350 plus postage £10 UK or £15 for overseas destinations

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