Well Spent $12

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Review by Tedstor posted 08-01-2012 12:21 AM 3187 views 1 time favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Well Spent $12 No-picture-s No-picture-s Click the pictures to enlarge them

So I’ve grown tired of using a 24” framing square when laying out larger workpieces and other shop projects.In my hands, the larger framing squares are a bit cumbersome. Knowing I will need a larger square to make a cross cut sled and to install a new fence on my table saw, I began looking for options. I remember reading that drafting squares are typically inexpensive and fairly accurate. Cheap and accurate? Thats a winner in my book.

I’m always weary of buying measuring tools online. Its my luck that the product would arrive with visiable damage or obvious manufacturer defect. So I headed to my local Staples and found the Staedtler Mars 24” T-Square. Shelf price was $12.49. Construction and materials are straight-forward. The head and main portion of the beam are made of some unidentified wood. The wooden beam is also lamintaed between two pieces of acrylic. I’d call the quality of construction “adequete”. Given the low price, “adequete” is good.

Accuracy is also good. I checked it against a known square piece of 18×18 plexiglass and again on my table saw top. A miniscule amount of deviation MIGHT have been noticed at the very end of the beam. I’m talking a small fraction of one degree, and I’m not even sure if its not perfectly sqaure. That said, in my world, its good enough. And the couple projects I’ve used this on so far have turned out well.

I gave this five stars because I’m happy with the balance of value/quality/performance. I do kind of wish I paid the extra money for an aluminum model since I’m now convinced I’ll use this tool a lot and I feel that a metal square will last longer. But I’m a satisfied customer nonetheless.

View Tedstor's profile


1691 posts in 3479 days

8 comments so far

View Mainiac Matt 's profile

Mainiac Matt

9645 posts in 3174 days

#1 posted 08-01-2012 01:07 AM

I’m off to Staples this week!

I need a new set of drafting squares as well.

Thanks for the review

-- Matt -- I yam what I yam and that's all what I yam

View racerglen's profile


3112 posts in 3626 days

#2 posted 08-01-2012 12:17 PM

Had one for years, picked up at a second hand store..It’s so old the acrilic has yellowed.
It’s a great tool !

-- Glen, B.C. Canada

View Ryan Haasen's profile

Ryan Haasen

385 posts in 3247 days

#3 posted 08-01-2012 02:39 PM

When I started drafting, one of my dad’s work-partner/friend got me a drafting table and everything I needed to make blueprints! It was a great thing. One of the things he got me was one of these T-squares, and it is extremely handy for both wood and paper.

-- Ryan

View sixstring's profile


296 posts in 3089 days

#4 posted 08-01-2012 07:33 PM

I still have my Staedtler t-square from my high school drafting days. At least 18 yrs old now and it’s still pretty darn accurate. Your post has me wondering if I can build my own custom sized t-square. I have a large framing square that’s too big for most projects while my 24” Staedtler is too small for some tasks.

How hard can it be if I have a solid reference to align my T? Just a big giant mitre gauge right? Hmmm…

-- JC Garcia, Concord, CA : "It's easier to ask forgiveness than permission..."

View Gator's profile


383 posts in 4522 days

#5 posted 08-01-2012 07:51 PM

I have the 24” & 36” hanging over my bench – I use them often actually – great gotta haves for the shop.

You will not be disappointed.


-- Master designer of precision sawdust and one of a kind slivers.

View lumberjoe's profile


2902 posts in 3094 days

#6 posted 08-02-2012 01:19 AM

I still draw plans by hand. Go figure, a pro IT nerd and I draft on a table. I have a few of these and I have never thought to bring them from the drafting table to the shop. Great idea!


View davidroberts's profile


1027 posts in 4332 days

#7 posted 08-04-2012 03:53 AM

same as gator, used them for years, especially when CAD took over, my squares and triangles sat in the closet until one day I had this idea….. some of the best accuracy tools available for peanuts.

By the way, the large blue sheet rock squares are pretty darn accurate also, like for cutting down plywood, and even cabinets.

-- Better woodworking through old hand tools.

View a1Jim's profile


118134 posts in 4423 days

#8 posted 08-04-2012 04:07 AM

Good idea thanks for sharing/


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