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Of Tool Cabinets, Chewing Gum and Sealng Wax #18: Squares, Squares and more Squares...

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Blog entry by Bill Berklich posted 04-01-2020 12:55 AM 426 reads 0 times favorited 3 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 17: Gents Saw Upgrade Part 18 of Of Tool Cabinets, Chewing Gum and Sealng Wax series Part 19: Sucking Sawdust »

OK, I’m not a galoot. I use hand tools to augment my power tools. While the quite whisper of a sharp plane on pine like the silent fall of heavy snow is wondrous, the screaming song of an 6 inch jointer and instant piles of wood shavings fits me better. That said I do like a well made tool. Earlier I rehandled a Two Cherries backsaw and honestly I like it better than my Veritas Dovetail saw – more on that later. It got me to thinking about other tools I could make.

And then… the 2020 Surprise Swap started. If you’ve never done an LJ Swap you owe it to yourself to give it a try. WOW – these guys are good and boy will it challenge you.

I ended up making a host of squares each better and more accurate than the last.

Some looked stunning but boy were they out of square… and not by only a couple thou. Those really nice looking Bloodwood and Osage Orange things (Not Squares) were the worst.

Talk about “factory seconds” I had to split out the handle of the five.

Eventually I managed a set that was equal to my Starrett. Those went out as Swap items

The two wooden squares are interpretations of 16th century Melencolia (Honduran Rosewood & Spruce) and Wierix (Honduran Mahogany & Oak) squares. The name come from the artists who included these tools in their paintings. The black handled square is Gaboon Ebony and brass with Aluminum pins.

I still need to rebuild the rest so more stripping fitting riveting and finishing

Interesting note though. The Melencolia and Wierix Style squares have kind of be come my “go to” tools. The are light, easy to use, don’t ding the wood when I’m a bit clumsy and are never cold.

Hmmmmm – I have to say that I learned a lot. I think maybe I’ll make a few more.

-- Bill - Rochester MI



3 comments so far

View Dave Polaschek's profile (online now)

Dave Polaschek

5202 posts in 1322 days


#1 posted 04-01-2020 03:13 AM

It’s fun having your own shop-made tools, isn’t it?

-- Dave - Santa Fe

View Bill Berklich's profile

Bill Berklich

1091 posts in 1128 days


#2 posted 04-01-2020 10:29 AM

Yeah Dave – I think the Mallet Swap kicked me over. Though for the Turning Swap I got some epoxy and think I’ll try something that’s not a tool ;-)

-- Bill - Rochester MI

View Dave Polaschek's profile (online now)

Dave Polaschek

5202 posts in 1322 days


#3 posted 04-01-2020 12:38 PM

I’m thinking that too handles might fit, too… Just sayin’

-- Dave - Santa Fe

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