How to Cut Wood Without a Saw | 9 Best Alternative Ways

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Last Updated on April 16, 2024 by John Patterson

How to Cut Wood Without a Saw

I am a woodworking lover and know cutting wood without a saw.

This article will share my practical experience with a few other best wood-cutting tools.

Although there are different types of saws that are available on the market to cut wood, rather than saw, you can also cut wood using other techniques.

Woodcutting is an art for which you have to have skill.

Not only talent, but it should also need care when doing it. A saw is a primary tool for woodcutting, but one may not have this to him.

So, even if a practicing carpenter wants to practice this, can’t he do the job without a saw? He can. I saw most of the carpenters use different decent mini circular saws for their DIY projects.

You will find a lot of other tools to cut the wood. For this, we need to know how to cut wood with other power and hand tools. Let’s know about the tools with their functions. I am going to discuss this, so stay with me.

How to cut wood at home: The 9 Best ways Explained

  1. Using a Sharp Knife
  2. Using a Decent Drill
  3. Using a Machete
  4. A Sharp Axe is an Excellent Tool to cut Wood
  5. You can use Chisels to cut wood
  6. Using Planes
  7. A Good Router can be used
  8. Using a Lathe
  9. Cutting Wood with a Hookaroon

How to cut wood without a saw: Wood Cutting Tools

#1. How to cut wood with a knife:

Cutting wood with a knife

If some pieces of wood exceed the length, you can fix them with a well-sharpened and decent knife. The process is:

  • First, sharpen your knife using a file.
  • One way is implementing the slanting technique. Hold the wood to be cut firmly, and using the knife, cut it at a slanted angle.
  • Trim the wood’s edges appropriately.
  • Another way is to cut small bits from the point of cutting with a knife. Then snap the piece of wood using your hand. And after that, trim the cut with a sharp knife. Now the wood is ready for use.

You can cut only thin pieces of wood with a sharp knife. Let’s see how we can cut dry wood with a buck knife.

#2. How to cut wood with a drill:

Cutting wood using a drill machine

Carpenters prefer certain types of wood for furniture whose breadth is relatively thin.

Other dimensions are much longer. In that case, carpenters use a quality drilling machine quickly and easily without relying on a saw.

  • First, make several perforations on the wood using a drilling machine. The apertures should be online.
  • Repeat the process until the wood gets weakened and then breaks off along the line of perforations.
  • Then trim the wood edges using any tool, i.e., sharp knife or machete. Now your furniture wood is ready to use.

#3. Using a sharp machete:

Sharp Machete

For cutting the thin raw wood, carpenters apply this tool instead of a saw.

Cutting raw thing wood is not something that needs to have a saw. A well-sharpened machete can do it correctly.

  • First, identify the point from where you want to start the cut and mark the point clearly around the wood.
  • Use your sharp machete to cut small bits along the marked line at a slanted position. Repeat this on both sides of the wood.
  • Repeat this process until the wood breaks.
  • To have sharp edges, trim the edges using a machete.

You can repeat the procedure to get as many as woods. So it would be best if you did not depend on the saw for cutting wood.

If you want to cut any dry tree, a sharp machete is one of the best options to get the job done. Let’s watch the below video for more detail:

#4. Cutting wood without a saw: Using a sharp axe

wood cutting axe

A higher thickness of wood you can cut using a top-quality sharp axe if you have no saw in your stock.

Although the process is time-consuming, it is better to use an ax. Undoubtedly this is one of the best tools to cut wood.

  • Mark a clear line where you intend to start from around the wood. And then, use a sharp ax to cut small bits a few inches from the line.
  • Do this continuously and then look into the other side of the line. Do the same.
  • Continue this until the wood gets weak to break.
  • After breaking, use the sharp ax to trim the edges.

I think this is one of the easy ways to cut wood without a saw. What do you think?

#5. Using a chisel:

cutting wood with a chisel

In place of a saw, you can also cut wood using a top-quality woodworking chisel. Find the best one from top-rated brands on the market in 2020. The procedure is given below:

  • Find a suitable chisel and sharpen it up to its edges. Know how to chisel wood.
  • Secure the wood on a firm surface. After that, hold the chisel with both hands.
  • With bevel side up and flat side against a wood surface, carve at a 16 to a 20-degree angle.
  • Then hold a hammer with the dominant hand and the chisel with the other hand. Put it onto the wood.
  • Hit the chisel with a hammer and then lever it to remove chipped wood.

Essential read: types of chisels and their uses.

Therefore, the wood is cut. Let’s watch the below video for some very essential techniques to achieve crisp dovetails:

#6. Cutting wood with planes:

wood cutting plane

Without a saw, you can cut wood using a decent plane:

  • Make sure your plane has a sharp blade for depth and lateral alignment.
  • Adjust the depth adjustment wheel according to the depth of the wood you want to cut.
  • Plane the wood through the entire length and follow the grain’s direction. Without minding the grain, you can ruin the surface of the piece of wood.
  • Plane the wood from one side to another and vice versa.

Thus you can use a plane as the instruction is simple. Let’s watch the video to learn how to use a smoothing plane.

#7. Cutting wood using a router:

wood cutting router

It is one of the most versatile electric tools. How to use a router for cutting wood is given:

  • Install the router bit and adjust the gauge for the depth you want.
  • To engage it with the wood, pull the trigger. Then push it downward.
  • Move the router in the direction of the cut.
  • When finfish cutting, release downward pressure on the router handle.
  • Use other bits for cutting edges and set the gauge. Again push downward, pull the trigger, move the router from left to right, and release pressure on the handles.

Related Post: Wood Router Buying Guide.

#8. Using a lathe:

wood cutting lathe

To create a functional furniture component, you can use a top-quality lathe. Without applying a saw, you can do it quickly. The procedure is here:

  • First, mark the wood piece’s center and place it between the lathe centers.
  • Turn your lathe on at the lowest speed. Watch the chip-size cut from the wood.
  • Move the edge to be parallel to the wood piece’s rotation.
  • Push the tool into the stock to remove an equal amount of wood. Thus you can cut wood, its angular corners, and even make a cylindrical shape.
  • After cutting, increase lathe speed to smooth the surface and move it along the wood’s length.

Now your work is finished with just a lathe.

See the below video to learn more about the topic

#9. Cutting Wood using a Hookaroon

Hookaroon uses

Along with the other eight cutting wood tools I described here, I also use a Hookaroon for cutting wood. The key feature of a Hookaroon I liked most is it can grab the wood so that you can drag it quite easily.

You can also use quality Pickaroon while cutting the wood. Read the Hookaroon and Pickaroon differences with pros and cons.

Our recommended Best Hookaroon on Amazon is Fiskars Hookaroon (28 Inches)

Frequently Asked Questions

#1. Can you cut balsa wood with scissors?

Answer: Using a dull blade is not a wise decision. As a woodworking lover, I am suggesting you do not use any scissors, no matter how thin the wood is. If you want my suggestion, I recommend a Stanley knife, a sharp knife, or a quality razor blade.

#2. What do I use to cut wood?

Answer: I use different types of saws like Jigsaw, circular saw, miter saw, table sawreciprocating saws, and door trimming saw.

#3. What saw to use to cut wood?

Answer: My favorite choice is a top-notch Circular saw.  I can use this for cutting short lengths, long lengths, and well as from different angles. A Circular saw is the best for cutting wood, but if you have a top-quality blade, you can also cut stone or metal. I love its straight-cut option.

#4. Can you use a jigsaw to cut wood?

Answer: Yes, you can. But to cut the wood with a jigsaw, you need a proper blade and a quality jigsaw. For cutting wood, Jigsaw uses 1/8 inches embedded nails.

#5. Can you use a hacksaw on wood?

Answer: A quality Hacksaw is best for cutting metal, but sometimes you can use it for cutting wood and plastics, also.

#6. Can I use a Rotorazer to cut wood?

Answer: Rotorazer is a versatile and innovative 7 in 1 tool. Crafters, carpenters, interior designers, and construction workers also use this mini circular saw. We are using rotorazer, and a few alternatives to cut wood, plastic, plywood, hardwood, drywall, laminated wall, ceramic tiles, sheet metal, masonry, grout, marble, PVC, pegboard, travertine, and steel.

Final Words

Not necessary that you should have seen to cut wood. As you see, you can quickly cut a piece of wood using various types of tools.

Only you need to know how to cut wood without a saw.

And the processes of cutting wood with some of the tools are given here so that you are the beneficiary.

Now, enjoy your work!

And utilize each job with these tools without giving it a second thought.

Related to you:
#1. Woodworking Clamps Buyers Guide
#2. Cutting hard Plastic Without Breaking It.

About the author

John Patterson

Hi there! My name is John Patterson. I’m a meticulous guy who loves to deal with the perfect tools for various needs. No matter if it’s a woodworking tool or gardening tool or anything else, I don’t compromise the quality and usability. Since 2010 I’ve been testing different tools for different DIY and professional tasks. Later in 2015, I decided to share my knowledge with the world. I started by answering people in the forums and several Q/A sites like Quora. Then I founded this blog to aid others like you with my knowledge and experience.