English Layout Square

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Project by horologist posted 12-28-2010 07:35 AM 7312 views 11 times favorited 10 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I saw this square at the Woodworking in America Conference this past fall and thought it was a beautiful tool. I took several photos with the intention of making one of my own but managed to lose them. Fortunately Christopher Schwarz wrote up this square as a project in the December 2010 Popular Woodworking.
In our family we have a tradition, every year we draw names and make that person’s gift. This past Christmas I had drawn my dad’s name. The only problem, I needed to do all the stock prep in his shop. To disguise my intentions and to cover any goofs I might make at home, I prepared enough stock to produce four squares, two in white pine, two in curly maple. The white pine was used as a test case before performing operations on the maple. As it got closer to Christmas I had to set the others aside and finished the gift square. I’m working on completing the remaining three.

-- Troy in Melrose, Florida

10 comments so far

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


18244 posts in 3639 days

#1 posted 12-28-2010 08:14 AM

Awesome!! I love curly maple :-))

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View BTKS's profile


1986 posts in 3427 days

#2 posted 12-28-2010 08:30 AM


-- "Man's ingenuity has outrun his intelligence" (Joseph Wood Krutch)

View Dennisgrosen's profile


10880 posts in 3078 days

#3 posted 12-28-2010 08:33 AM

that´s a great gift and a beautyfull tool :-)
but does he dare to use it ….LOL

thank´s for sharing

View RayCurtis's profile


128 posts in 3126 days

#4 posted 12-28-2010 09:19 AM

Great Job, When I saw Chris’s article it hit my project list immediately. I still haven’t selected the wood yet but I am seriously thinking of it…..

-- RayCurtis

View Bluepine38's profile


3379 posts in 3048 days

#5 posted 12-28-2010 04:15 PM

Not a ruler on the square, I had to go to the original site and check! Just a beautiful tool that requires a
little thought to use correctly. One more project on my ever growing list. Thank you for sharing.

-- As ever, Gus-the 79 yr young apprentice carpenter

View Cozmo35's profile


2200 posts in 2999 days

#6 posted 12-28-2010 10:32 PM

Great choice of wood. Beautiful!

-- If you don't work, you don't eat!.....Garland, TX

View Matt 's profile


212 posts in 3712 days

#7 posted 12-28-2010 11:32 PM

I also saw this on the Popular woodworking magazine and put it on my to do list. Did you use his half lap joinery or some other kind?

-- Hold on! Let me get the board stretcher!

View 8iowa's profile


1580 posts in 3724 days

#8 posted 12-29-2010 02:20 AM

Since I’m the “dad” who is the recipient of this neat English square, naturally I think it is beautiful and functional. What a great gift. It’s made out of Upper Peninsula curly maple purchased from a mill right on the shores of Lake Superior. I brought a supply down here to Gainesville in September.

Thanks son.

-- "Heaven is North of the Bridge"

View horologist's profile


104 posts in 3702 days

#9 posted 12-29-2010 05:46 AM

I used the bridle joint at the peak and half laps for the horizontal piece as per plan. It gave me a chance to get very familiar with my new Lee Valley router plane. Always nice when a project gives you a chance/excuse to buy a new tool.
The photo of the original antique square almost looks like it has a bead scratched into it. I did consider using my scratch stock to add a bead and may yet try it on one of the pine squares but with the impending Christmas deadline I chickened out on trying this in the curly maple.

-- Troy in Melrose, Florida

View horologist's profile


104 posts in 3702 days

#10 posted 12-24-2013 06:12 PM

A little late but here is the photo of the four completed squares….

-- Troy in Melrose, Florida

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