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A (K)new concept in jewelers saws

I don’t know how many of you read all the blogs, but Jim Binnions
blog about a new saw is really worth reading.

I too got a couple of Lee Marshalls new saws. I simply love the 3
inch one. I think I counted 5 other saw frames in the bottom drawer.
They are going to stay there because Lees product is superior in
every way. No longer do I have a permanent bruise from tensioning the
blade. The little thumb screw is far more effective. Sawing is much
quicker because you don’t have to fight the saw.

What I like even better is his new bench pin. It is steel, flat,
stable and amazing.

Lee is a hero. He has done so much for jewelers that he should be a
national treasure. At least to all of us.

Judy Hoch

Hi All. About 5 minutes after reading Jim Binnion’s blog entry on
the subject, my new saw was on order. I’ve been sawing for about a
week with it, and thought I’d report in. I LOVE it! The blade
tightening system reminds me a lot of some guitar tuning mechanisms
I’ve seen, and eliminates the chest bruising mentioned in a related
thread. And I could swear I’m sawing straighter! It’s a piercer’s
dream and should make it easier to re-tighten a blade that has
developed a curve. It’s SO light!

The unfinished wood handle is a little primitive in comparison, but
a foam sleeve took care of that. My only quibble is that it can be
tough to get the blade in the upper upper hole while holding the saw
frame, the piece, and the spring mechanism all at once. I added a
little bevel around that hole and it helps a bit. I still prefer the
mounting system using 2 squares to clamp the blade, but Lee says
that would add too much weight. There is a small learning curve here,
but it’s most definitely worth it. Bravo, Lee!


I’d like to echo Allan’s comments about the Knew Concept sawframe.
Who ever would have thought that something as mundane and universal
to metalsmiths as a sawframe had so much room for improvement! I’ve
been using a top-of-the-line Swiss frame for decades and thought it
was among the best on the market, until I got one of the Knew Concept
frames. By comparison, it makes my Swiss sawframe look like something
from the nineteenth century. Lee Marshall says he makes jewelry for
jewelers, and this saw frame proves it, in my book.

The first thing I noticed is the weight. This frame seems
weightless! The second thing I noticed and probably the most
important improvement is the stiffness. I never would have believed
my trusty old Swiss frame was as wobbly as it is, but it’s like a
soggy noodle next to the high-tech Knew Concept frame. The result of
this rigidity and stiffness is the ability to cut straight lines or
curves with absolute precision, with no tendency to wander. Cutting
multiple pieces simultaneously such as open braided wire, spaced
rings or ring guards is a piece of cake as the blade tension remains
more or less constant on all of the strands. It also cuts down on
broken blades and it looks really cool to boot.

Those experiencing problems associated with tensioning blades using
their sternum and bench pin will love the tensioning device on this
sawframe. That little piece of engineering is what allows the rest of
the sawframe to exist. The flexibility that allows the normal
procedure used to tension blades is the very thing that makes the
traditional sawframe wobbly and obsolete.

Allan’s opinion of the handle and the clamps were exactly my initial
impressions, and were the only things I might have changed. But
having gotten used to it, I wouldn’t change a thing. Well, maybe a
hand-turned walnut burl handle and hot rod style flame job lightening
holes might dress it up a tad. :wink:

I really like this sawframe. Lee sent me an early prototype of the
3" to evaluate and after using it pretty heavily for a few weeks, I
bought three more, one each for my shopmates (mine kept disappearing)
and one for my brother, a fellow goldsmith/tool junkie. Can’t wait to
see the titanium versions. I think I’m going to have to hang them on
the wall instead of hiding them in a drawer so everyone can see them.
They’ll go great with the laser and the flat screen microscope
monitor in the twenty-first century shop!

I have to agree with Allan’s assessment:

There is a small learning curve here, but it's most definitely
worth it. Bravo, Lee! 

Hear, hear! But give that flame job a thought, Lee. Custom jewelry
just for us gear-heads, don’t you know.

Dave Phelps

P.S. to Allan, The saws will have red handles shortly. Apparently, I
was the only other person who commented on the wood handle to Lee,
and so he thought they did not bother people, and that they would
prefer to have the saw sooner, rather than wait for one with a red
handle. You can see how they look with the red handles on my blog:


Lee’s saws at the Orchid Dinner. I’m THERE!! No kidding. I have
gotten the best tools at the Orchid Dinner. (Thanks to the genius of
Steve Satow) Maybe I’ll be lucky in the drawing. Can’t wait, Judy in

Hi Allan,

An advantage to the single hole for the saw blade is that the blade
is positioned exactly right. With the “two clamp system” the blade
can be angled differently every time you replace a blade.


I’d really like to try this new saw frame. Can anyone tell me who
carry’s it or how i can go about ordering one?

Linda Reboh

It also cuts down on broken blades and it looks really cool to

OK, OK, I’m convinced. I do a LOT of piercing, so obviously I need a
bright red, cool saw… though I’d wait a bit if it meant I can get
those flame-shaped holes. I cannot come to Tucson, so where do I get
it and how much does it cost?


You should be able to order by e-mailing Lee:

Temporarily, I am handling orders through email to me at:
[knewconcepts at yahoo dot com]

I love my 5", and think I will order a 3" also… I figured I would
go with the 5" first, since that is where I thought it would make
the biggest difference. Fabulous saw!!! Plus it looks really kewl !

Beth Wicker
Three Cats and a Dog Design Studio

Can anyone tell me who carry's it or how i can go about ordering

You can buy it directly from Lee Marshall at his site:


Hello all you good people,

I would also like to chime in about the new (K)new concept hand saw.
I also bought one right after reading Jim Binnion’s post and I have
cut absolutely straight lines and inner and outer circular forms and
they were so accurate that I only had to do 2 maybe 3 strokes with
the file just to take away the marks of the sawblade. Looking at the
shape before filing, the only place that I could see any variation
was where I started and stopped. It is surprising when you first hold
it in your hand as it is so lightweight. I have been showing it to
all of my students and when they first take hold of it, their eyes
get large and they always remark on the lightness of it. I noticed
that sawing for some time was not at all tiring and almost
effortless. I can heartily recommend it to anyone who does a bit of
sawing and would like to make it more fun and easier.

Lona from Louisville where the bitter cold is finally over and the
snow is almost gone. Can’t wait for spring!!

I just bought two of Lee’s saws ( When I
first saw them I knew that they would be very stiff and I have been
thirsting for such a frame for years. I originally bought the large
8 inch frame since the large saw frame I have used for the past 30
years was so awful. It is the conventional style frame and I could
break blades fast and efficiently with that frame. I hated that
frame. When I saw Lee’s frame I thought that Lee was really onto
something so I ordered the large one right away. After receiving and
using the large one, I ordered the 3 inch. Now I have been known to
buy titanium soldering tools (which I love) and am happy to spend
money on tools I think will perform. I have to live with tools every
day so I want the best. I think Lee has produced the best jeweler’s
hand saw on the market. The stiffness is a god send, it’s also very
light which I didn’t think was going to be an advantage but, it
seems that it is. The blade system he has designed for holding the
blade is the best I have ever used and I have tried them all. I am
not an instruction reader, I do then read the instructions when all
else fails. I actually read Lee’s instructions for putting a blade
into the saw and found them more confusing than just doing it. So
much for reading instructions. Putting a blade into Lee’s saw is like
tuning a violin, I tighten it until I get the sound I want and then
start to work.

I highly recommend these saw frames and thank Lee for making them.

Sam Patania,

What is the difference between the red handle and the wood handle? I
received my 3 and 8 inch saws this week and am loving working with

Way to go Lee and THANK YOU!

Please refresh my aging memory - will Lee’s saw be available
somewhere in Tucson??

Judy in Kansas

I ordered the 3" and the 5" saw frames shortly after the first
posting here about them. I absolutely love them but I can’t believe
how light they are. In fact, when the box came and I picked it up at
my front door I panicked at first. I thought there must have been a
mix-up and the frames were inadvertently left out of the box! So I
tore it open and there they were in all their red glory.

These make sawing a joy.

I ordered the 3" and the 5" saw frames shortly after the first
posting here about them[snip] These make sawing a joy. 

I was sawing last night, and found myself holding the frame at an
angle to saw straight, and I thought “OK, OK, I’ll order one.” I
just wanna know-- if I order now, will I get the red handle?


Hi Noel,

I was sawing last night, and found myself holding the frame at an
angle to saw straight, and I thought "OK, OK, I'll order one." I
just wanna know-- if I order now, will I get the red handle? 

I stopped by and had lunch with Lee over the weekend, and saw the
new shop. He’s got some with red handles, and some with plain wood.
Just ask for one of the red ones, and you should be good.


Hi All. I’m discovering another advantage of my great new saw. Not
only am I sawing more accurately, but it’s allowing me to saw much
faster- without quite the level of constant vigilance I had to
practice previously. This saw has serious potential for very
significant increases in productivity. It’s the best tool purchase
I’ve made in a long time! Lee, you’re going to sell a jillion of


Well, after reading all of the rave reviews, I jumped and just
purchased the 5" saw. I have a number of pieces that I need to cut
out so I can’t wait to get it. Hurry & ship it out Lee.

DeMoy Jewelry Designs

Hi gang,

I’d like to correct a misimpression that appears to have sprung up
regarding my comment about Lee’s saws with the red handles: he’s
only offering the saws with red handles. The box of plain handles I
saw in the shop were prototype handles he’d ordered to see how he
liked various shapes. Having finalized his design, he ordered the red
ones for the production saws.

So, they’ve all got the famous red handles on them now. No need to
specify that you want the red ones.