compass saw

noun Carpentry.

a small handsaw with a narrow, tapering blade for cutting curves of small radii; whipsaw.
Compare keyhole saw.

Origin of compass saw

First recorded in 1670–80 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for compass saw

  • The compass-saw shown at Fig. 107 is used for general purposes, but is not so necessary as the back saw.

    Carpentry and Woodwork|Edwin W. Foster
  • The keyhole-saw, which is even smaller than the compass-saw, is used for cutting quicker curves, as for a keyhole.

    Woodworking for Beginners|Charles Gardner Wheeler

British Dictionary definitions for compass saw

compass saw


a hand saw with a narrow tapered blade for making a curved cut
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012