BeadLOCK system

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Review by jerry118 posted 02-29-2008 12:51 AM 4427 views 0 times favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch
BeadLOCK system No-picture-s No-picture-s Click the pictures to enlarge them

The tool itself consists of a drill guide which produces overlaping holes in the parts to be joined. The set that I used is by the origonal manufacturer. I believe the system is now owned by Rockler, so some of the comments that I make may no longer be valid.
The chief problem I encountered was the fact that with the knobs used for tightening the guide in the origonal or secondary position are too small to adequately tighten by hand. If the secondary position is not adequately torqued, the guide will slip and the holes will not be properly aligned.
It is critical that a sharp drill bit is used when drilling. Do not use a brad point bit.
When used the joints appear to be very strong.

This is not a tool for a production facility because the process of drilling is time and labor intensive.

-- Jerry, Wichita KS

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22 posts in 4511 days

8 comments so far

View teenagewoodworker's profile


2727 posts in 4539 days

#1 posted 02-29-2008 01:07 AM

looks cool
would you recommend the newer system for young or beginning woodworkers looking to make wortise and tenons without special machinery or a specialized tool (i.e. Domino)

View Grumpy's profile


26427 posts in 4622 days

#2 posted 02-29-2008 01:17 AM

I have the Beadlock Jerry and agree with your review. That does not mean I will not use it, on the contrary I thing it is a good system but it lacks some refinements. I replaced the knobs with larger ones to get more leverage, that makes a big difference. Holding the tool tight on the wood is another issue but that can be overcome. I purchased the router bits to make the tenons but have not tried them yet.
The joints look good and tight but there is a minor problem with alignment (a belt sander can easily fix that).
I think it is worth persevering with although I am not entirely jumping for joy with this tool.

-- Grumpy - "Always look on the bright side of life"- Monty Python

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27250 posts in 4593 days

#3 posted 02-29-2008 01:41 AM

Thanks for the review Jerry and the comments Grumpy. This has been on my wish list (along with a number of other tools) but I just haven’t decided whether to go with it or not. This helps me push it back down the list somewhat. It seems to be a tool that is nice to have but not a top priority.


-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

View grovemadman's profile


556 posts in 4543 days

#4 posted 02-29-2008 02:25 AM

I have been thinking about this tool for a while, I’ll have to wait till others weigh in with their two cents before I buy one though. Thanks for the review

-- --Chuck

View jeffthewoodwacker's profile


603 posts in 4575 days

#5 posted 02-29-2008 05:28 AM

I also added larger knobs to my beadlock and it made a big difference. I never use a pencil to make alignment marks—always use a marking knife as that is more accurate.

-- Those that say it can't be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

View rikkor's profile


11295 posts in 4645 days

#6 posted 02-29-2008 12:57 PM

I have it, too. I have the same complaint about the knobs not holding and the guide slipping. I am going to (someday) get larger knobs, too. Beyond that I like the system, and would second the recommendation.

View jerry118's profile


22 posts in 4511 days

#7 posted 02-29-2008 07:48 PM

Regarding Grumpy’s comment about slipping:

I adhered a piece of self adhesive 300 grit sandpaper to the face of the tool that is to be clamped to the wood. This stopped most of the slippage. I used the vice grip type clamp that is sold for the Kreg pocket hole system and although I clamped it tightly, there was still a slight tendancy to slip, but not nearly as much as without. The new Rockler seems to use plastic, This may slip less.

Compared to the Domino system $700.00 the $30 plus is ok for a cheppscate like me.

-- Jerry, Wichita KS

View Jim Crockett (USN Retired)'s profile

Jim Crockett (USN Retired)

852 posts in 4504 days

#8 posted 03-10-2008 04:18 AM

I read recently that Rockler has bought out Beadlock. Now I wonder what modifications Rockler will make to the system, perhaps correcting some of the deficiencies noted above. Hoe so, because it has always sounded like a great system to me.


-- A veteran is someone who, at one point in his/her life, wrote a blank check made payable to "The United States of America," for an amount of "up to and including his/her life".

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