Best Japanese Pull Saw in 2022 (Reviews and Comparison)

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A Japanese Pull Saw is one of the woodworking world’s best-kept secrets.

If you have used one before or even already own a Japanese Pull Saw, you know what a game-changer they are. If you haven’t used one yet, we are here to help you discover why they are so good.

Then we will help you choose which is the best Japanese Pull Saw for you.

First, here’s a quick explanation for the uninitiated.

What Is Different About A Japanese Pull Saw?

Most traditional saws that we are used to using cut when you exert force as you push the saw away from you.

A Japanese Pull Saw, as the name implies, does the opposite, it cuts as you pull the saw towards you. At first thought you may think that’s not a great idea as surely we can exert more force pushing away.

Well, there are benefits to cutting during the pull action. When you push a saw blade with the handle at the back against the resistance of wood, the blade’s natural tendency is to bend or flex, so the blade has to be thick enough to resist that force.

But when you exert the force as you pull the saw blade, its natural tendency is to straighten! Hold on a minute! How come we’ve never thought of that before! Surely that’s much better. 

It is. 

You can control your cut better, keeping it straighter. But really importantly it means the blade can be thinner. And a thinner blade can cut through the wood more easily. That’s a win-win.

Japanese Saws have very narrow kerf which makes their cuts very narrow and clean.

Using A Japanese Saw

At this point, it’s worth pointing out that after years of using push saws, it can take a little time to get used to the different style of using a Japanese Saw.

You need to remember to make the cut on the pull stroke and also bear in mind that you shouldn’t have to use as much effort when you do cut. The thinner, sharper blade should cut more easily than you are used to.

Types Of Japanese Saws

Just like the traditional saws we are used to, there are different types of Japanese Saw.

Here’s a quick guide:

Ryoba – Has teeth on both edges of the blade. Usually different TPI per side so you are getting two saws in one. Used like a traditional hand saw.

Kataba – A very thin and flexible saw with teeth that either stick out on one side only or neither side. These are great for cutting dowels flush without damaging the surrounding surface, so they are often referred to as flush cut saws.

Dozuki – Has a rigid ‘spine’ on the back of the blade, like a tenon saw, to keep it more rigid for straighter cuts. Good for dovetail joints.

Azebiki – Has a curved blade. You can place this curve anywhere on the wood to start cutting; you don’t need to start on an edge. So it’s useful for cutting out holes in wood. 

COMPARISON CHART

IMAGE PRODUCT
SUIZAN Japanese Pull Saw Hand Saw 9.5 Inch Ryoba Double Edge Flush Cut Saw for Woodworking Suizan 9.5 Inch Ryoba Japanese Pull Saw
  • Double Edge
  • Quality Tool
  • Cross And Rip-Cut In One Saw
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KAKURI Japanese Pull Saw 9-1/2" Ryoba Double Edge Hand Saw for Woodworking, Non-Slip Cork Handle, Made in JAPAN Kakuri 9.5 Inch Ryoba Japanese Saw
  • Double Edge
  • Quality Japanese Steel
  • Cross And Rip-Cut In One Saw
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SUIZAN Japanese Hand Saw 9.5 Inch Dozuki Dovetail Pull Saw for Woodworking W-01 Suizan 9.5 Inch Dozuki Dovetail Japanese Pull Saw
  • Very accurate, narrow cuts
  • Fine teeth
  • Cuts with minimal work
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SUIZAN Japanese Dozuki Dovetail Hand Saw 7 Inch Pull Saw Tenon Saw for Cross-cut, Rip-cut, Slant Cutting Suizan 7 Inch Dozuki Dovetail Japanese Pull Saw
  • Very accurate, narrow cuts
  • Fine teeth
  • Cuts with minimal work
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Gyokucho Razorsaw Flush Cutting Double Edge Saw 125mm with Wood Handle Gyokucho Razorsaw 5” Flush Cutting Japanese Pull Saw
  • Super Thin Flexible Blade
  • Smooth Flush Cuts
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1. Suizan 9.5 Inch Ryoba Japanese Pull Saw

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SUIZAN Japanese Pull Saw Hand Saw 9.5 Inch Ryoba Double Edge Flush Cut Saw for Woodworking

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SUIZAN Japanese Pull Saw Hand Saw 9.5 Inch Ryoba Double Edge Flush Cut Saw for Woodworking

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SUIZAN Japanese Pull Saw Hand Saw 9.5 Inch Ryoba Double Edge Flush Cut Saw for Woodworking

Specification

BrandSUIZAN
Blade Length9.5 Inches
Number of Teeth25
Item Weight‎5.6 ounces

Features

  • 9.5-Inch Double Edge Blade
  • 0.02-inch thick
  • Narrow kerf
  • Cross-cut and Rip-cut
  • Replaceable Blade
  • Made in Japan

Suizan is a top Japanese Saw manufacturer who has been making quality hand tools for over 100 years. This 9.5” Ryoba saw is one of their highest-rated saws.

Like all Suizan Japanese Saws, it is made in Japan from top-quality Japanese steel.

The slim 0.02-inch blade with narrow kerf requires less power and leaves a cleaner edge to your cuts.

Featuring a removable 9.5” double edge blade with cross-cut and rip-cut teeth for quality straight cuts in any direction.

WHAT WE LIKE

This is a great all-purpose Japanese Saw that would make an ideal first Japanese Saw for those wanting to give them a go.

Its narrow, double-edged blade is useful for many jobs and as the blade is removable you can interchange blades as your collection grows.

WHAT WE DONT LIKE

The rip cut edge has quite large teeth and takes getting used to with the different technique of a Japanese Saw.

PROS

  • Double Edge
  • Quality Tool
  • Cross And Rip-Cut In One Saw
  • Sharp Straight Results

CONS

  • Handle Comfort

2. Kakuri 9.5 Inch Ryoba Japanese Saw

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KAKURI Japanese Pull Saw 9-1/2" Ryoba Double Edge Hand Saw for Woodworking, Non-Slip Cork Handle, Made in JAPAN

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KAKURI Japanese Pull Saw 9-1/2" Ryoba Double Edge Hand Saw for Woodworking, Non-Slip Cork Handle, Made in JAPAN

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KAKURI Japanese Pull Saw 9-1/2" Ryoba Double Edge Hand Saw for Woodworking, Non-Slip Cork Handle, Made in JAPAN

Specification

BrandKAKURI
Blade Length9.5 Inches
Number of Teeth‎17 Teeth per Inch
Item Weight‎8.1 ounces

Features

  • 9.5-Inch Double Edge Blade
  • 0.6mm thick
  • 0.9mm kerf
  • 17 TPI Cross-cut
  • Graduated Pitch Rip-cut
  • Replaceable Blade
  • Cork Resin Handle
  • Made in Japan

Kakuri is another top Japanese saw maker that has been making quality tools in Japan for decades. This 9.5” Ryoba model is its equivalent to the previous Suizan.

It also features a narrow double edge Cross cut and Rip cut replaceable blade made from Japanese steel.

WHAT WE LIKE

Just like the Suizan, this is a great all-purpose Japanese Saw for experienced users and first-timers that produces great results.

The double edge blade allows quickly moving from cross cut to rip cut with a simple turn.

WHAT WE DONT LIKE

A little more expensive than the Suizan, but price may vary from time to time so worth keeping an eye on.

PROS

  • Double Edge
  • Quality Japanese Steel
  • Cross And Rip-Cut In One  Saw
  • Sharp Straight Results

CONS

  • Price
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SUIZAN Japanese Hand Saw 9.5 Inch Dozuki Dovetail Pull Saw for Woodworking W-01

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SUIZAN Japanese Hand Saw 9.5 Inch Dozuki Dovetail Pull Saw for Woodworking W-01

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SUIZAN Japanese Hand Saw 9.5 Inch Dozuki Dovetail Pull Saw for Woodworking W-01

Specification

BrandSUIZAN
Blade Length9.5 Inches
Number of Teeth25
Item Weight‎6.4 ounces

Features

  • 9.5-Inch Replaceable Blade
  • 0.012-inch thick
  • 0.016-inch kerf
  • 25 TPI
  • Cross-cut
  • Made in Japan

This Suizan Japanese Saw is one of their Dozuki Japanese saws. Remember Dozuki saws are the ones with the stiffening rib attached to the back of the blade. Combined with the typically slim blade this allows you to make precise straight and narrow cuts, like those in dovetail joints.

The top-quality Japanese steel cross cut blade is removable and interchangeable for easy replacement and changing.

WHAT WE LIKE

This is another top-quality Suizan saw that produces very precise and accurate cuts with little effort.

WHAT WE DONT LIKE

It is expensive. But high quality. The handle could sometimes benefit from more grip. 

PROS

  • Very accurate, narrow cuts
  • Fine teeth
  • Cuts with minimal work

CONS

  • Handle hard and smooth
  • Cost

4. Suizan 7 Inch Dozuki Dovetail Japanese Pull Saw

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SUIZAN Japanese Dozuki Dovetail Hand Saw 7 Inch Pull Saw Tenon Saw for Cross-cut, Rip-cut, Slant Cutting

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SUIZAN Japanese Dozuki Dovetail Hand Saw 7 Inch Pull Saw Tenon Saw for Cross-cut, Rip-cut, Slant Cutting

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SUIZAN Japanese Dozuki Dovetail Hand Saw 7 Inch Pull Saw Tenon Saw for Cross-cut, Rip-cut, Slant Cutting

Specification

BrandSUIZAN
Blade Length7 Inches
Number of Teeth15
Item Weight9.6 Ounces

Features

  • 7-Inch Replaceable Blade
  • 0.012-inch thick
  • Narrow kerf
  • Easy Grip Handle
  • Made in Japan

This is a smaller 7-inch Dozuki Dovetail saw from Suizan. It shares all the same features and qualities as its larger brother but in a smaller size.

The handle is a more modern easy-grip manmade material.

WHAT WE LIKE

This saw produces excellent results with a surprising ease of cutting. The smaller size and lower cost may appeal to some users.

WHAT WE DONT LIKE

The smaller blade means it cuts to a limited depth. This may be an issue in some jobs where the 9” may be more suitable.

PROS

  • Very accurate, narrow cuts
  • Fine teeth
  • Cuts with minimal work 

CONS

  • Limited cut depth

5. Gyokucho Razorsaw 5” Flush Cutting Japanese Pull Saw

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Gyokucho Razorsaw Flush Cutting Double Edge Saw 125mm with Wood Handle

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Gyokucho Razorsaw Flush Cutting Double Edge Saw 125mm with Wood Handle

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Gyokucho Razorsaw Flush Cutting Double Edge Saw 125mm with Wood Handle

Specification

BrandGYOKUCHO
Blade Length5 Inches
Number of Teeth19
Item Weight‎1.92 ounces

Features

  • 5-Inch Double Edge Blade
  • 0.0012-inch thick
  • 32 TPI cross cut
  • 21 TPI cross cut
  • Beechwood Handle

This 5-inch Gyokucho Razorsaw is perfect for cutting dowels flush.

Gyokucho has pioneered the stamping and flattening of saw blades, as well as grinding, setting and impulse hardening teeth.

This results in a super-thin flexible blade that is designed for very clean flush cuts. Double-edged with fine teeth gives you smooth cuts in narrow materials.

WHAT WE LIKE

The super-thin 0.0012-inch, yes 0.0012-inch, flexible blade and fine teeth are perfect for flush cutting and produces such impressive results that the wood may not even need sanding.

WHAT WE DONT LIKE

The blade is not replaceable so it is in effect a disposable saw. But it is not too expensive, about the same as other replacement blades, so doesn’t matter too much.

PROS

  • Super Thin Flexible Blade
  • Smooth Flush Cuts

CONS

  • Blade not replaceable

Conclusion

The Japanese Saw market is dominated by a couple of manufacturers so it’s hard not to choose one of their models.

Also, like traditional saws, there are different styles of Japanese Saws so it’s hard to recommend just one Japanese Saw.

If you are going to buy just one Japanese Saw (for now at least) then we would recommend the Suizan 9.5” Ryoba Japanese Saw. It is a great introduction to Japanese Saws and can be used on a wide variety of projects. It will produce superb results with surprisingly little effort (once you get the hang of the different way of using a Japanese Saw).

The Kakuri 9.5” Ryoba Japanese Saw is very similar, just a little more expensive. But you may prefer the cork/resin handle and rather pay the extra for this saw.

If you are looking for a Japanese Saw primarily for flush cutting things like dowels and joint ends then the Gyokucho 5” Flush Cutting Japanese Saw will not let you down.

Get ready to join the club of Japanese Saw fans!

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