Watch: Restoring a Gas-Powered Reciprocating Saw


Watch: Restoring a Gas-Powered Reciprocating Saw

I enjoy working on old power equipment, and most of mine is orange. Collecting, buying, and selling Economy/Power King/Jim Dandy tractors has become a hobby and sometime obsession for me. It’s helped me develop my mechanical ability, which certainly comes in handy in other areas, like remaining self-sufficient around the homestead.

This video shows an overhaul of an unrelated (but still orange) piece of equipment, and an unusual one at that. It’s a Wright Saw Model B520, which is made with handles like a chainsaw and has a similar-looking gasoline engine, but instead of a bar and chain there’s a bar with a reciprocating blade. Think “Sawzall on steroids.”

It started out pretty well; some disassembly and cleaning of the breaker points to restore spark. Then more teardown, and around the 8:20 mark he commits a bit of tool blasphemy when it uses a wood chisel to make a notch in metal! When I was a boy, my father issued wood-chisel-related threats deep and serious enough to make a strong impression on me, so that gave me pause.

When he continued to use it on metal on through the video, I just had to cringe and live with it, but I might have called him something unkind.

Overall, it looks pretty clean inside.

He got pretty crude & rough with the ignition wire and the decal. Yikes. And I’ll never know why he used a hammer on a hand-crimp tool, and doesn’t bother using screwdrivers that actually fit the screw slots.

When he made the new round spring clamp starting around the 27:30 mark, he regained some respect.

The blades might be the coolest part of all. Still, I can’t really see myself using this around the homestead in place of a chainsaw or even a Sawzall. But one of the advertised uses was meat cutting, so maybe for carving up large animals like elk, moose, or cows?

What do you think?

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