Knew Concepts POWER saw question - POWER SAW ONLY!

I want to know if there is anyone out there using the Knew Concepts POWER SAW for making pancake dies or blanking dies. Please don’t comment about the manual version of the saw or the hand held manual jeweler’s saw. I read back over the previous posts about the POWER saw and was frustrated that almost everyone who commented was posting about the hand held saw and related problems.

I would like to know if anyone has been successful at getting past the learning curve and is actively using the Knew Concepts POWER SAW to cut out pancake dies. I’d also like to know about any problems you have had with the POWER SAW or any other opinions, observations, or advice you may want to share.

Thanks in advance,

Anne Smarzik (Metalmaven)
Bastrop, TX

Hi Anne,
i dont recall any mention anywhere here of the power saw as such.
Brian? Aberic? any chance of an outline of this? not so much for me that is, but for others who make these pancake? dies.? by hand?
For you Anne, very sorry to hear of your fire loss, Everything in your w/shop can be repaired or replaced ,but your customer records? or data base? Cos i though once you have replaced it all how about a retrospective expo with an invite to your new w/hop/ to all your former customers?
just my penny’s worth.
Re your rolling mill reply, as you may have read, i do all my work wrought ie using full size as in 3in thick minting dies cut in the negative. for you pancake dies why not have your designs cut by wire EDM? they will cut into already hardened steel plate at the correct angle YOU specify. and in your thickness of tool steel will be inexpensive?
I currently have my blanking dies cut this way.
For example ive 3 heart shaped dies( 1in to 2.5in dia) from the 1890’s but no punches to fit. Ive given my EDM shop the dies and a piece of 3/4in thick shear steel, annealed to cut out the positives to match the dies to within 1/1000 tho in, then I weld the positives to the tooling that fits my presses. Im blanking of course with a 6 ton power press into 100/1000 in bronze and sterling prior to minting in the design. the dies register the blank and depending on the customer requirements, will be done with a soft ali force cold in a hyd press or hot in a drop press.The former is slow the latter is v/fast.
For rolling mill embossing , go the extra mile and have tool steel embossing plates 2D die sunk.
Await news of you resurrection !
Technical Ted

Hi Anne,
Dar Shelton here , the pancake die guy. I have used the KC power saw , but I was never particularly fond of it. The main reason is that , years ago, Lee Marshall made me a saw that I
like better, and is, in fact, the only power saw I’ve ever liked for pancake dies. That’s great for me -as I’ve cut many, many thousands of dies with it over the years- but of no use to anyone else. That’s because it’s a one-of-a-kind prototype , that never made it to production , because of what we determined were safety issues . It’s powered by a gear motor, and is designed like the original Bonny Doon Saw Guide , that accepts a normal jeweler’s saw frame into it’s spring-loaded clamping arms .

I’ve always said there’s something …advantageous about being able to incorporate the (learned) natural pressure/motion cycle of hand sawing into machine sawing, and that’s what the saw does, as opposed to the KC power saw where you have both hands pushing on the die. I’m sorry I can’t help you with using your saw, but I became spoiled using my custom saw. maybe I can offer some encouragement, however, because my saw was frightening and dangerous for a good while, until I developed a feel for it’s quirks and qualities. For years, I didn’t use it on anything intricate, or anything that had to be precise. I was simply already too good and intricate, delicate designs with my other saw - an old BD saw guide that I’d adapted to leg power- so that I used the gear motor saw for bigger, thicker, simpler designs/dies . I did get better and better with the motor saw, and now I can be as “perfect” as with my manual saw on most designs. So I do know that it takes time to get good at sawing dies. I knew that ever since I started , in 1986, when I was already extremely good with a jewelers saw, but I had never sawed tool steel dies with a device that held the saw straight , while the work was turned around to follow the design. It took a couple years to get really good at it . It’s hard to be accurate, even on the best of days; sometimes blades just go where they want to go

Oh yeah, PS, I only use Platinum blades (Pike Platinum, and I got some Platinum from Contenti recently (great price, exact same blades) . They are the hardest blades , and are brittle, but they saw the fastest/easiest , and sometimes amaze me at how far they go. If you ask me, no other blades are suitable for sawing tool steel.

DogBoyDar channel on youtube

I bought one of these saws a number of years ago when I was having some
wrist problems. It allowed me to keep working while my wrist got better so
it was definitely worth it for me. It did take some getting used to so
there is a learning curve. I think I cut out one pancake die just to see
how it would work for that. It seemed to work OK, but I’m not really a
pancake die expert.

These days I’ve mostly switched to cutting things out with my 3-axis CNC
mill, so I don’t do much sawing either by hand or with the power saw. I’ve
been thinking I should sell the power saw and free up some space in the


I might be interested in purchasing it if it’s in good working condition. How much do you want for it?