FAQ / Trivia

Frequently Asked Questions about musical saws:

Does the saw have teeth?

How long is the Mussehl & Westphal Tenor Saw?

Does the saw have a hole at the tip for a cheat?

Do you sell cheats?

How many octaves does the saw have?
Over two.

What is the range?
The range is Ab below middle C to F above high C.

What are the selections on the CD?
Danny Boy, Autumn Leaves, I Will Wait for You, On Top of the World, Morning Has Broken.

Do you gold plate saws?

Does rust affect saw playing?
As long as the rust is only on the surface and can be easily removed, it will not affect saw playing.

Do you ship internationally?

Which countries have you sent saws to?
Argentina, Australia, Austria, Barbados, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Central Africa, China, Columbia, Czech Republic, Denmark, England, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Holland, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Indonesia, Israel, Japan, Luxembourg, Mexico, New Zealand, Northern Ireland, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Scotland, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Turkey, United States, and Wales.

How do I care for my saw?
The blade can be cleaned with any mild metal cleaning product, but then protect it with a cheap polish. It is best not to make the playing edge spanking clean, since a bit of resin residue promotes easy stroking.

Who was Westphal?
Marian Westphal and Clarence Muessehl started the company as partners in 1921. She left the business early on, but Clarence stayed with it and it caught on!

How long is the Sandvik Stradivarius Baritone Saw?

What is the Sandvik range?
The range is E below C to High C.

Musical Saw Trivia:

  • New Yorker Moses Josiah, played the musical saw for the Queen of England.
  • There is a statue of Tom Scribner prominently displayed in downtown Santa Cruz, California. Scribner was a tremendous force behind the promotion of the musical saw.
  • The musical saw has been played with the Cincinnati Philharmonic (by the 70 year old virtuoso Margaret Steinbuch) and the Los Angeles Philharmonic (by the famous David Weiss).
  • Actor Robert Blake of “Baretta” and actress Nanette Fabray played the musical saw as well as a beloved character named Saw Music Sam.
  • Renowned composers have written entire compositions and solos for the musical saw. Some examples include the solo in Katchaturian’s “Concerto No.1 for Piano and Orchestra”, Henri Sauguet’s “Plainte” and Crumb’s “Ancient Voices of Children”. These pieces have been performed nationally since their introduction.
  • The voice of the musical saw is featured on Neil Young’s album, “Hawks and Doves”.
  • Television episodes and motion pictures such as “Gilligan’s Island” and “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” also feature the musical saw.
  • Like most other industries during the great depression, the musical saw experienced a large decline in sales.
  • The steel needed to manufacture saws was scarce in World War II due to the high demands of the war effort.
  • The “Saw Lady”, Natalia Paruz, organizes the International Musical Saw Festivals in New York City and Israel annually. She has played the musical saw in numerous movie soundtracks, an off Broadway show, TV commercials and with international orchestras.
  • The musical saw was played on the Berlin stage by Marlene Dietrich.
  • The musical saw is played by one of the main characters (Fish) in the 2014 animated movie “The Boxtrolls”.