Needs more refinement

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Review by funchuck posted 08-06-2011 02:13 PM 4491 views 0 times favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Needs more refinement No-picture-s No-picture-s Click the pictures to enlarge them

I already have the Veritas wheel marking gauge w/ micro adjust, but I wanted another marking gauge because oftentimes, I wanted to save my settings, but with only 1 marking gauge, I couldn’t. I found this at Lee Valley for $20 and it was 2 marking gauges in 1, so I figured it was a good deal.

One unexpectedly nice thing about this gauge is that it will not roll off your bench. I have had my large (and more expensive!) wheel marking roll off my bench before, and the cutter got damaged. The pocket marking gauge won’t roll, so I like that feature.

The cutter is also very good quality, and it is small enough that you can carry in your pocket and keep it handy.

The smaller fence doesn’t bother me either. So far, I have not felt a need to have a bigger fence, actually.

But, I have found that you have to really tighten the gauge down, otherwise when you are marking your piece, the fence will slip and you lose your setting. This has gotten me several times, and I end up having errant marks on my piece, which doesn’t look good at all. I have never had this problem with the more expensive Veritas wheel marking gauge, they are very easy to lock down and they don’t budge when they’ve been locked down.

The other issue I have is that the fence is very loose so when you are trying to set the fence, you have to be very careful, otherwise, when you are locking down the fence, the fence might move slightly. With the bigger Veritas wheel marking gauge, the fence doesn’t slide so loosely, so it is easy to lock it down without having it shift around.

It is still a usable tool, but I can’t give this tool more than 2 stars. The larger Veritas wheel marking gauge is a lot better.

-- Charles from California

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119 posts in 3828 days

7 comments so far

View Dennisgrosen's profile


10880 posts in 3886 days

#1 posted 08-06-2011 11:00 PM

thank´s for the rewiew
hope they will take care of it … fast


View Dusty56's profile


11859 posts in 4459 days

#2 posted 08-07-2011 01:46 AM

Have you contacted the company with your issues / dissatisfaction with their tool ?

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View David Grimes's profile

David Grimes

2078 posts in 3410 days

#3 posted 08-07-2011 06:44 AM

Good review. I’m needing some of these, so glad to get a heads up.

Probably little they can do without making it “larger”... maybe improve the knurled knobs for torque (a tiny “t” or “L”, perhaps), increase the thread diameter for greater surface contact with the tiny shaft, but keep the threads fine if they aren’t already. That’s about all they could do IMO.

-- If you're going to stir the pot, think BIG spoon or SMALL boat paddle. David Grimes, Georgia

View ChuckM's profile


649 posts in 4437 days

#4 posted 08-08-2011 01:04 AM

I have this gauge and, like 3fingerpat, have not experienced the problems you reported. It’s possible that despite the strict QC process Veritas has, your gauge has a defect. Please contact the Customer Service and they will quickly resolve your concerns if the tool is in fact defective,

Given the small size, it’s also possible that too much lateral force could cause one of the problems you encountered. The larger one which I have used, I believe, has a larger screw and hence better grip for the fence.

Those who have used the larger gauges need to “relearn” how to use this smaller cousin in terms of applying force, adjusting the fence, etc. As a suggestion, whether with the large or small gauge. scribing with gentle force in the first one or two passes is preferable.

-- The time I enjoy wasting is not time wasted

View JasonD's profile


180 posts in 3632 days

#5 posted 08-08-2011 04:09 AM

I’ve got the same problems with mine. I used coarse sand paper around the shank. It helped some, but didn’t fix the problem entirely.

Thanks for the “relearning” tip, ChuckM. Next time I use it, I’ll try to use a lighter touch to see if that helps.

View lashing's profile


111 posts in 3592 days

#6 posted 08-09-2011 04:55 PM

Lee Valley sells some really good stuff and unfortunately they also sell the same really cheap crap items others do. The good this is they will take it back without issue. I do wish they would decide whether they are a premium goods or a dollar store. Perhaps its what they have to do to make the bottom line, I dont know.

View JADobson's profile


1448 posts in 2882 days

#7 posted 03-14-2014 05:59 PM

I bought this one as my very first marking gauge and returned it after an hour for the Veritas gauge because of the slippage problem. No matter how tightly I set it, it slipped every time I used it. Didn’t matter which way you were going through the grain either. Not a good tool. Love my Veritas gauge though. Works like a champ.

-- No craft is very far from the line beyond which is magic. -- Lord Dunsany — Instagram @grailwoodworks

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