Saw in wood frame, from James Watt's workshop
A saw in wood frame, broken and worm eaten
This object is part of the contents of the workshop which belonged to Scottish engineer James Watt, best known for his work on the steam engine.
These are parts of a bow-saw, a type designed to allow the workman to cut a curved kerf, comprising: blade; two end-knobs (one damaged), one turned end-frame; and the twisted string of a Spanish windlass. Two fragments of the other end-frame, ruined by woodworm - almost certainly during the 19th century - lie on the floor. The blade should be pinned to the two knobs which pass through holes at the lower ends of the end-frames. The latter embrace a strut, forming an H, and their upper ends are strained together by the Spanish windlass. An improvised strut, and twist stick for the Spanish windlass, are in drawer 2 of the tall chest of drawers also present in the workshop.
The workshop contents consist of a mixture of ongoing projects, in large part around sculpture and sculpture-copying which occupied Watt’s retirement years, and also items from Watt's working career stretching back to his early work as an instrument-maker in Glasgow.