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Marking Gauge

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Project by Brett posted 02-08-2012 04:06 AM 4179 views 19 times favorited 14 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Here’s a little marking gauge I made. The design is a composite of one from the Popular Woodworking website and another in an old Fine Woodworking book called Bench Tools.

The fence is made of mahogany (I think) picked up at an estate sale, the dowels are birch and cherry purchased at Woodcraft, and the wedge is walnut given to me by a friend who works at a cabinet shop. The cutting iron is from an old hacksaw blade and the finish is Danish Wood Oil, which I had on hand from a previous project. Total price, probably just a few dollars.

Except for the holes, which were made with a drill press, everything was shaped with hand planes, hand saws, and chisels. I made three identical fences from one piece of wood (which was easier to cut and plane, due to its size), so I plan to make another marking gauge and a scratch gauge. Hopefully the mahogany will not wear too quickly.

The diameter of the upper part of the fence is almost identical to the diameter of a baseball—it feels very comfortable in the hand.

My next project is a couple of saw benches—which is why I need the marking gauge!

-- More tools, fewer machines.





14 comments so far

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

112170 posts in 2244 days


#1 posted 02-08-2012 04:12 AM

That’s a very cool marking gauge,this should serve you well for years to come.

-- http://artisticwoodstudio.com Custom furniture

View doordude's profile

doordude

1085 posts in 1649 days


#2 posted 02-08-2012 05:42 AM

nice tool, i guess i’ll have to try and make one.

View schuft's profile

schuft

122 posts in 1274 days


#3 posted 02-08-2012 06:05 AM

Clever design!

View Ken90712's profile

Ken90712

14978 posts in 1855 days


#4 posted 02-08-2012 08:57 AM

Well done!

-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

View dubsaloon's profile

dubsaloon

619 posts in 1460 days


#5 posted 02-08-2012 10:44 AM

It looks Awesome. Simple and effective. now all I need is some rosewood or wenge.

-- The works of evil people are not the problem. It is the "Good" people standing by and watching not speaking up. Dubsaloon

View Don W's profile

Don W

15060 posts in 1234 days


#6 posted 02-08-2012 05:14 PM

thats a different design than I’ve seen. Its pretty cool. How did you cut the flat sided hole?

-- Master hand plane hoarder. - http://timetestedtools.com

View Mauricio's profile

Mauricio

6820 posts in 1818 days


#7 posted 02-08-2012 06:14 PM

How cool is that!

-- Mauricio - Woodstock, GA - "Confusion is the Womb of Learning, with utter conviction being it's Tomb" Prof. T.O. Nitsch

View Brett's profile

Brett

624 posts in 1349 days


#8 posted 02-08-2012 10:05 PM

Don W, do you mean the hole for the wedge? If so, I used a small chisel and lots of trial and error.

To cut the hole, I first planed the underside of the beam (the beech dowel), which made it flat so the beam wouldn’t roll around. I clamped the beam onto the workbench and stabbed at it with the chisel to make the hole.

-- More tools, fewer machines.

View Don W's profile

Don W

15060 posts in 1234 days


#9 posted 02-08-2012 11:50 PM

I actually meant the hole for the dowel, but thanks for the explanation.

-- Master hand plane hoarder. - http://timetestedtools.com

View Brett's profile

Brett

624 posts in 1349 days


#10 posted 02-09-2012 12:09 AM

Don W, both holes were just made on the drill press. They overlap slightly, but there were no difficulties.

-- More tools, fewer machines.

View Don W's profile

Don W

15060 posts in 1234 days


#11 posted 02-09-2012 12:16 AM

Ok. I see now. I thought it was flat on the bottom. bad eye sight.

-- Master hand plane hoarder. - http://timetestedtools.com

View Dusty56's profile

Dusty56

11663 posts in 2355 days


#12 posted 02-09-2012 02:38 AM

It looks more like a Rosewood than any Mahogany I’ve ever seen to date.
Beautiful piece of wood and a nice looking , useful tool : )

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View Damien Pollet's profile

Damien Pollet

73 posts in 1276 days


#13 posted 04-29-2013 02:36 PM

Nice simplification from the similar design that uses square mortises!
How well does the wedge work? I imagine friction would tend to rotate the bar, preventing the wedge from being pushed strong enough, or getting it loose with small movements… it probably depends on how much play & wear there is… did you experience any problem?

View Brett's profile

Brett

624 posts in 1349 days


#14 posted 05-03-2013 06:23 PM

Damian, the wedge works well. I just tape one end of the wedge on the bench to lock the beam and the other end to loosen it, all with one hand.

-- More tools, fewer machines.

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