How To Cut Wood Without A Saw

How To Cut Wood Without A Saw

Picture this: you’ve found a piece of wood that would be perfect for your latest construction project.

How To Cut Wood Without A Saw

It has all the qualities you want! You eagerly get ready to cut it into the measurements and size you need, but then realize that you don’t have a saw to hand. However, will you cut it now?

Not to worry, we have the solutions for you! There are many different ways to cut a piece of wood, all without using a saw.

The article below will describe them, detailing how to do each. Remember, always be safe when dealing with sharp tools and cutting!

Cutting Wood With A Knife

A knife is a great choice for cutting wood because everybody has one in some form! However, it can be challenging to use effectively.

It’s also crucial that you use it carefully and safely! The best way to avoid injury is to learn how to control your knife. You should also know how to choose the right blade for the job.

The type of knife you use depends on the kind of wood you are working on. Utility knives are a good choice because they have a long, thin blade made specifically for cutting wood.

It usually comes with a wooden handle so that you can hold it securely while using it. 

Utility knives are available in different sizes and shapes. They come in several types, including fixed blades, folding blades, locking blades, and multi-tools.

Fixed blades are large and heavy and a wise type to pick. Most people prefer fixed blades because they feel more secure when holding them – and security is what you want here! Fixed blades are also designed to last longer, too. 

Other types of knives you can use are whittling knives and hunting knives. The crucial thing is that you feel comfortable and firm holding it – you don’t want it to slip easily.

It is also essential that the blade is sharp! Dull knives can damage your hands and the material you’re cutting.

If you’re using a more everyday kind of knife, like a kitchen knife, you ideally don’t want something that has a serrated edge. These work alright on small pieces of wood but will be mostly useless if you’re cutting a bigger piece of wood. 

But how should you cut the wood itself? Well, follow these careful steps!

1. Hold the knife in your dominant hand with the blade facing away from yourself. This will help keep your fingers out of harm’s way if the blade slips.

2. Grip the handle firmly with your non-dominant hand. Your thumb should fit snugly into the hole on top of the handle.

3. Place the tip of the blade against the workpiece.

4. Now, slide the blade along the edge of the workpiece until you reach the desired depth.

5. Continue sliding the blade back and forth to make shallow cuts.

6. Repeat steps 1 through 5 until you have finished making all of the cuts.

When you’re done, wipe off your blade and put it away safely. 

Cutting Wood With A Machete

A machete is an excellent choice for cutting wood. Machete blades are flat and wide, making them ideal for cutting large pieces of wood. Some machetes even include a hook at one end for pulling logs out of the ground. 

Machetes are readily available, but they are dangerous and big – so you must be careful when using them! If you’re not comfortable using such a razor-sharp tool, get professional help, or use another method from this article. If you are?

Make sure your arm is steady, and that you’re using your dominant hand. Also, make sure that the wood is firmly held down when cutting.

The first thing you want to do is to mark a line on the wood where you want to start cutting. Now apply the machete blade to the wood and cut along the line, making a small indentation.

Once you’ve got that dent, you can begin sawing! You want to do so carefully and slowly, making long movements back and forth. Don’t rush it.

Keep going until you’re about halfway through the wood. Now you can choose which route you take. The first would be removing the machete, flipping the wood over, and drawing a new line on the other side – opposite to the line you already had cut into.

If you do this, get the wood held down firmly again, and start repeating the process from the other side now. Again, do it by making an indentation on the new line, and then sawing slowly.

Eventually, the two sawing places should meet in the middle, and the wood will come apart.

If you don’t want to do this method, you may be lucky and not have to! If you’ve reached the halfway point with your first cut, then you can remove the machete and try to pull the wood apart.

Whether this will work depends on your strength and the hardness of the wood. It won’t always be possible to break it apart when you’ve only sawed half of the wood!

But sometimes it will, and that could save you time. Remember: be safe either way.

Cutting Wood With A Drill

Another method for cutting wood can be with the use of a drill. You could find yourself in two conditions: either you have a single drill or you own a large drilling machine.

Either way, you should be able to cut the wood. However, these methods are best for medium-sized pieces of wood, not larger and chunkier things like logs. 

To do it, draw a line across the area of the wood that you want to cut. Now get hold of your best drill bit and put it into your drill. Go to the top of your line, and drill a hole into the wood.

After that? Keep doing it! Remove the drill from the wood, move it slightly down the line, and drill in again. You need to drill all the way across the line in this way. 

Crucially, make sure that your drill holes overlap, so they all blend together. When all is done, there should be a nice and deep constant line across the wood – perfect for you to pull the wood apart. 

The only flaw of this cutting method is that the final cut will be rough and uneven. To fix this, get some sandpaper and start sanding down the edge.

They should eventually be smooth, and you’ll finally have a clean cut. 

Cutting Wood With A Chisel And Hammer

This works similarly to the drill because you’re repeatedly making digs until you get your final cut. This is a handy method, but be warned: it can be slow. If you’re up to the effort, though, read on!

How To Cut Wood Without A Saw (1)

First, you want to get your chisel and hammer. A deadfall hammer or a mallet can be good choices, but any will do. Now take the chisel in your weaker hand and the hammer in your dominant hand.

Locate the part of your wood that you want to cut (you can mark it with a pen again for extra help) and put the head of your chisel against the line – at around 20 degrees. 

With your stronger hand, now hit the hammer down onto the chisel. Hit a few more times, then remove any chipped wood that’s come out. Have you made the full cut you wanted?

Great! Wipe away any excess wood and enjoy your final product. Haven’t got the full cut you wanted? Repeat the process!

Hit the chisel a few more times, wipe away, hit it again, wipe away – and continue until you’ve made the woodcut you wanted!

Cutting Wood With A Router

If you have an electric router, it can be an excellent tool for cutting your wood! 

To begin with, look at your selection of router bits. Which is the sharpest? When you’ve got your best one to hand, put it into the router and adjust the gauge to work best for the size of the cut you want – deep or shallow. 

Now secure the piece of wood, or have somebody else hold onto it firmly. Turn the router on by pulling the trigger and moving it toward the cut, passing through the wood.

If you’re happy with the result, keep having the router pass over the wood until the entire depth of your cut has been completed. Remember, be careful with machinery like this!

Final Thoughts

There you have it! With the help of this guide, you should now be able to cut your pieces of wood all without the use of a saw.

Whether you pick a knife or a drill, or any other method, there will surely be one option that suits you for cutting your wood!


Diarmuid Brock

I'm a carpenter by day and an amateur woodworker by night. I don't believe in limitations, and I love to help others. I'm here to answer your questions and make your life simpler. I craft and create with all-natural, reclaimed, and repurposed materials.

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