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Bar Gauge - 2018 Layout and Marking Tool Swap

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Project by GrantA posted 11-10-2018 02:44 PM 846 views 3 times favorited 9 comments Add to Favorites Watch

For my swap item I made a bar gauge inspired by the WoodPeckers OneTimeTool bar gauge.

I used 303 stainless 3/8” solid round bar for the rods, there are 6 at 12”, 2 at 8” and 1 at. 6” plus the two fixed 6” bars. Each end of the bars was locked into a collet on my lathe, faced, chamfered, center drilled and tapped 1/4-20. A stud was installed in one end with blue loctite, in the event threads become damaged they can be replaced.

For the blocks I used 6061 aluminum, rough cut in my bench vise with a sawzall then secured in a 4-jaw chuck on the lathe and faced on 4 sides into 2 matching rectangular blocks. I then offset them in the chuck to bore the through holes, positioning them so I could bore one then carefully loosen the jaws & flip the block for the other. I got to finally use an adjustable hand reamer I picked up a while back to ream the holes a little bigger than 3/8 for the bars to slide.
All edges were eased on the belt sander and the blocks were sanded to a brushed finish for a working tool.

I then drilled the vertical holes (on the drill press) in the blocks for the thumbscrews- on one block there is a countersunk 10-32 machine screw on the bottom securing a fixed rod. That block also has a hole on top threaded 10-32 which can pinch the top sliding rod. The other block has the fixed rod on top with a hole allowing a 10-32 screw to pass into the lower rod’s passageway. The fixed rods themselves are drilled and tapped 10-32 across the 3/8 dimension- this was a little tricky, you can see it in one of the photos mounted in the lathe chuck sideways.

The thumbscrews are female threaded knobs with cut-to-length stainless bolts installed with red loctite- hopefully they stay put!

I machined 3 pairs of brass tips, without the tips the gauge can go as small as 6”, and it can go over 8ft

I sure hope Earl enjoys it!

Thanks for looking! Click the link below for a video
Grant

https://youtu.be/AzKozIk4eL8





9 comments so far

View EarlS's profile (online now)

EarlS

1890 posts in 2544 days


#1 posted 11-10-2018 02:51 PM

Oh yeah I’m going to enjoy using it, for sure. This is one solid, well made bar gauge. Excellent work Grant!!

-- Earl "I'm a pessamist - generally that increases the chance that things will turn out better than expected"

View mikeacg's profile

mikeacg

715 posts in 1254 days


#2 posted 11-10-2018 04:23 PM

Thanks for the explanation Grant! Looks great and sounds like a lot of work but I’m sure Earl will put it to work!

-- Mike, A Yooper with a drawl, http://www.artcentergraphics.com

View duckmilk's profile

duckmilk

3228 posts in 1521 days


#3 posted 11-10-2018 08:15 PM

That is impressive Grant! Thanks for the video of your work in action.

-- "Duck and Bob would be out doin some farming with funny hats on." chrisstef

View Bill Berklich's profile

Bill Berklich

472 posts in 585 days


#4 posted 11-11-2018 12:43 AM

Cool – Thanks for posting your “how to”. I thought about something like this but I couldn’t figure out how to do it. Nice execution.

-- Bill - Rochester MI

View jeffswildwood's profile (online now)

jeffswildwood

3588 posts in 2174 days


#5 posted 11-11-2018 12:43 AM

Awesome work and a great video. This one should last forever!

-- We all make mistakes, the trick is to fix it in a way that says "I meant to do that".

View Dave Polaschek's profile

Dave Polaschek

2820 posts in 779 days


#6 posted 11-11-2018 01:08 AM

Crazy, Grant! Wow!

-- Dave - Minneapolis

View HokieKen's profile (online now)

HokieKen

6998 posts in 1335 days


#7 posted 11-11-2018 02:38 AM

Excellent work Grant. Definitely a great tool to have and definitely an excellent process for making it happen. I would have just done the cross-drilling and tapping on the drill press. Your way is a lot cooler though ;-). It’s also a knuckle-buster whenever I’m around. :-/

Awesome to see you take the idea and run with it!

-- Kenny, SW VA, Go Hokies!!!

View GrantA's profile

GrantA

665 posts in 1604 days


#8 posted 11-11-2018 02:45 AM

Thanks guys! I did a fair amount of thinking about the block / rod interfaces to wrap my head around it! I enjoyed building it though!

Kenny if the bar was a half inch longer it would hit the ways and I’d have to use the drill press- I do currently have a round bar center finder in my shopping cart though! And I have a 2-flute spiral tap on the way to try (didn’t see a 2-flute with straight flutes, gonna try the spiral, should work great!)

View bobasaurus's profile

bobasaurus

3544 posts in 3380 days


#9 posted 11-12-2018 05:09 PM

Lots of work machining that all yourself, wow. Looks professional. Is this used for transferring inside dimensions?

-- Allen, Colorado (Instagram @bobasaurus_woodworking)

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