One tool I use on every build and every project in my house is a combination square. So it’s important to me to have good ones. That is, squares that are reliably square, and that lock tight and don’t slip.
I have several inexpensive ones that are good enough for framing, but just a hair out – so I don’t use them for furniture work. For precise layout and measurements, I prefer my 6″ or 12″ Starrett squares (one of which is always at home when I need it at work, and vise versa).
Yes, there are decent combination squares from other brands. But if you’re in the market for new squares, I’d recommend Starrett for reliability and longevity ($79 for the 6″/$85 for the 12″ at Lee Valley, from whom I borrowed the image above).
So this selection falls into the category of perhaps a bit pricey compared to some other brands, but worth it. I don’t need or covet a tricked-out combo square, but I absolutely want and need a good one (or more than one).
Here are some supplies and tools we find essential in our everyday work around the shop. We may receive a commission from sales referred by our links; however, we have carefully selected these products for their usefulness and quality.