From the Bench: Testing Your Layout Tools

Is your square really square? Is your straightedge straight? Tools that have been trued make woodworking easier.
By Don McConnell
Pages: 32-36

From the November 2004 issue #144
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A couple of years ago, while demonstrating edge jointing using hand planes, the shot edge appeared to be slightly convex when I checked it with my wooden straightedge. I don’t usually have this problem, so after a couple of tries, it suddenly occurred to me that I hadn’t recently “proved” my straightedge. Somewhat to my embarrassment, a quick check revealed that the problem was with my straightedge, rather than the shot edge.

I wish I’d been clever enough at the time to pass this off as a planned “object lesson” for the observers, but I’m just not that fast on my feet. However in the end, I think it did demonstrate the desirability of proving our layout and testing tools – especially when doing critical work.

From the November 2004 issue #144
Buy this issue now