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Last week, I posted a short video about a visit with John Economaki’s tool making class at the Marc Adams School of Woodworking. The purpose of the visit was to take photographs for a story John’s written for our October 2011 issue, on making the TS-2 Try Square – one of the tools on which Bridge City Tools was founded. One of things I find most interesting about the TS-2, however, is that the original version was built in a 9th-grade shop class.

John tells that story (and much more) in his upcoming article – and he also shows you how to build your own TS-2. (Subscribe now – either to the print or digital magazine so you don’t miss it!)

While you may know that we take most of our own step photos (and if a contributor asks us to take theirs, we try to accommodate), we almost never take the opening photos and cover shot. We leave those important photos up to our professional photographer, Al Parrish. But Al couldn’t go with us, and anyway, the students weren’t quite done with their versions of the TS-2 by the end of the day. So, the next day, they kindly packed up their squares and sent them to us via overnight delivery for a photo shoot in our studio yesterday.

Now I don’t know about you, but I’d be loathe to pack up a tool I’d just spent days making, and send it off to some magazine – before I even got to use it! But these guys did, and we thank them (and guys – I promise that we took very good care of your beautiful brass and rosewood babies – and they’ll be on their way home in tonight’s FedEx shipment). So, clockwise from the left in the photo above are tools from: Dante DiIanni (try square), John DeBoom (try square), Dante DiIanni (45° bevel gauge), Masood Garahi (try square), Bob King (double square), and Sam Prather (try square). And a special thanks, too, to Doug Dale at Marc Adams for boxing up the leftover bits and shipping them to us.

And start tuning up your band saw – you’ll want it in top form (and equipped with a blade for cutting metal) to make your own TS-2.

– Megan Fitzpatrick

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