J U Bugler Ashford ?

Discussion in 'Forum: Saw Identification and Discussion' started by lui, Mar 10, 2012.

  1. lui

    lui Most Valued Member

    Hi All,

    To start with, my apologies for not being around much lately, life has been busy and saws have taken a bit of a back seat.

    I do have a few saws to post on here, once I've finished cleaning them up I'll take some pics and post.

    I have a friend with a pit saws, she uses it regularly and has quizzed me about the maker. See pic attached below. I've struggled to find the maker, but I don't have a copy of the english saw makers bible.

    I suspect that with Ashford as the place name, the stamp is not the maker but the outlet.

    I don't have a pic of the whole saw but could ask for one to be sent on if required, however being a pit saw, handles etc won't be helpful.

    Any and all help welcome.



  2. fred0325

    fred0325 Most Valued Member

    Hi Lui, welcome back,

    Your Bugler is not in HSMOB because he is a supplier, but he is in Kelly's directory of Kent 1882 page 25.

    He is John Udal Bugler of 35 and 37 High Street, and he seems to do about everything in the ironmongery line.

    I can't cut and paste from Historical Directories, but when you see this Ray, if you could it is worth doing it because the man's services are prodigious.

    He isn't there in the 1870's but he is there in Slaters 1891, he is LTD by (Slaters) 1903 and by 1913 he is still there and at St John's Lane with his implement department. There is now a Managing Director H. O. Thorns. He also makes desks.

    It is possible that he may be dead by this time as, in the private residents there is no J.U Bugler but there is a Mrs Bugler in Folkstone, and she is the only person with that name.

    And I cannot go any further forward than 1913

    Any chance of a picture of the full saw.

  3. Barbara

    Barbara New Member

    Hi Lui and Fred
    Barbara here - owner of the pit saw.

    I'm most impressed by your sleuth work Fred! how cool is that! I actually found the directory you mentioned on line, and there he is - Mr Bugler. I can see how people get so into local history stuff.

    anyway sorry for the delay, I have tried to attache a photo of the saw, and couldn't quite work out how to do it, so will send it to Lui. They are rather hard to take a meaningfull picture of, as this one is 2m long. (I was intrigued that it came out to a metric measurement - was expecting an imperial one).

    Unfortunately Lui wasn't quite right about one thing: I in fact have never managed to use this saw, as it is impossible to set the teeth. it seems to go in patches - small sections of teeth are so soft that they set far too easilly and I can't believe that they will keep the set, but most of the teeth are just so hard that I either didn't manage to set them at all, or they break off! haveing lost 3 teeth in this fashion, I'm not keen to loose any more, so was wondering what I can do about this? I asume it is the natural crystalisation of old steel - but I don't really understand the process: is there anyway I can rejuvinate it?

    I would love to be able to use this saw as it is a nice length, so any help gratefully received!

  4. ray

    ray Administrator Staff Member

    Barbara emailed me this picture of the saw..


    Now there's an impressive saw!.. I'm not sure I'd like to be the man on the bottom of the pit with a saw like that. :)

    I wonder if it might not be from one of those machine operated gang saws?

    Nice detective work Fred, (you are getting pretty good at this stuff ) I'll see if I can get that directory information and add it to the thread.

  5. fred0325

    fred0325 Most Valued Member

    Hi Barbara and Ray,

    Thanks for the picture of the saw although I think that it asks more questions than it answers.

    Unfortunately Barbara, my ignorance of processes involving steel is matched only by my ignorance of saws, although I hope that some who use the site will have some idea of those selfsame processes. I did notice on the close-up that Lui posted that there was a fair bit of deep-ish pitting to the teeth. This must affect the way that they take a set, but I am not sure how it (weathering) affects hardness, if it does. Although I do remember someone saying on a previous topic that cleaning/treating saws with acid was not a good idea as affected the hardness of the steel, making it (I think) more brittle.

    Now, dredging my mind back 45 years to school, oxidation by weathering will be a related process to generic "oxidation" by acids (look up REDOX reactions on Wiki). So will prolonged weathering make the steel more brittle and mean therefore more snapped teeth???:confused:

    Also is it a two (politically correct):) person saw? I have only seen pictures of pit saws and they have always been two man ones, but the taper on the narrow end seems to me to leave little room for a handle to be mounted in comparison to the triple mounting holes at the other end.

    I have never heard before of one of Ray's gang saws but it does look as though serious force could be applied to it only through the wider end and that may well imply mechanical as opposed to human force on a saw of this size.

    Before I gave up watching TV, I am sure that I recollect a programme which stated that the phrase "top dog" came from pit sawing and that it referred to the sawyer (dog) on top of the pit, presumably as opposed to the "bottom dog" below. Does anyone know if this is right??

    Still, a very impressive saw, although a bit too big for above the fireplace.

  6. kiwi

    kiwi Most Valued Member

    I'm not a metalurgist, but heating the saw and adjusting the saw hardness without upsetting the saw tensioning might be tricky.
    I've noticed on some of my harder steel "Vanadium steel" handsaws, that the manufacturer recommends setting the teeth by hammer setting only and not by plier setting, which I presume is to reduce the chance of breaking teeth, (However, I'm not sure what method you've tried, nor if this advice is applicable for your saw).

    The end taper on the blade looks a little unusual for regular pit saws, but there seems to be enough space for a typical pitsaw lower handle (the "box"), which consisted of a wooden double handle with a slot to fit over the blade and a wedge to lock it in place [you need to be able to adjust the location of the handle along the blade to suit the depth of the pit and the height of the sawyers]
    The lower handle on my pitsaw is a little different style but would also fit. It has a steel strap that fits around the blade and is locked in place with a wedge [the saw is from Alfred Beckett, Sheffield, and the blade is 6ft-6in, (3/4" shorter than 2metres). The teeth have been re-filed to a new profile, (although the teeth at each end were not re-shaped....too much work! )]

    Attached Files: