Delta Mortiser 14-651 #15: Added depth gauge

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Blog entry by LegendInMyOwnMind posted 05-26-2011 01:12 PM 3000 reads 0 times favorited 3 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 14: Arts & Crafts Picture Frame - Very Rough Part 15 of Delta Mortiser 14-651 series Part 16: Better Dial Indicator Mounting »

I went to Harbor Freight and bought the clamping dial indicator with vice grips and gooseneck extension.

It’s really pretty cool.

Here’s a couple of pictures.

A couple of FWIWs…

- Although the goose-neck does adjust, there’s a pretty limited range on it.
- There are surprisingly few spots to clamp that allow the goose-neck to reach “just right”.
- No matter where I put the gauge on the back fence, it’s going to interfere with something like the fence lock down bolts.
- The depth adjustment gauge is pretty “tweeky”.
- Hard to tell just where the front of the fence is at vs the edge of the chisel..

Haven’t tried doing and real cutting to see how well it works for accuracy.

-- Doug - When all you own is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.

3 comments so far

View GregD's profile


788 posts in 3158 days

#1 posted 05-26-2011 02:31 PM

An alternative strategy would be to attach the gauge to a wood block that is shaped to reference the front edge of the bed, basically a “depth gauge” type arrangement except the “depth” would be the distance from the front edge of the bed to the front face of the fence. You would set the gauge to the side after setting the fence. Since the gauge is limited to 1” travel it will probably work best for making micro adjustments to the fence rather than measuring the offset between the fence and the chisel. My guess is that those fence supports allow the angle of the fence to change at least slightly, so you might need to check both ends.

Dial indicators are great.

-- Greg D.

View LegendInMyOwnMind's profile


199 posts in 2608 days

#2 posted 05-26-2011 02:51 PM

@GregD – I like that idea. This does seem to work. I would like the reference point to be as close to the chisel as possible to negate the fence “wobble”, but that’s a heck of a lot more practical.

I was thinking of a metal bracket that spans the center of the tool and allows the dial indicator to be at the center and referenced to the back of the machine, but it would definitely be a custom job.

-- Doug - When all you own is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.

View jm82435's profile


1285 posts in 3764 days

#3 posted 05-27-2011 05:39 PM

Or use a mighty mag…
Assuming the base is iron, use a magnetic base for the indicator. All you want to reference is how far your fence moved from the chisel right? (locate it as you said, centered under the chisel)
I use them whenever I want to see how far I adjusted a fence – table saw usually- but any fence really..

-- A thing of beauty is a joy forever...

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