My First Marking Gauge (old Project)

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Project by Dave Rutan posted 08-17-2013 11:28 AM 1373 views 2 times favorited 2 comments Add to Favorites Watch
My First Marking Gauge (old Project)
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This is one of my past projects, but since I’m seeing a lot of shop made marking gauges mentioned, I thought I’d join the fray. I built this a few years ago when I was just getting into woodworking. I didn’t know if I even needed a gauge, so I didn’t think it was worth putting out the money to buy a really nice one.

So I looked online and found an Instructable. After deciphering the instructions, it looked doable by me since it didn’t involve cutting a mortise, just a few holes.

The beam is a dowel and the head stock is most likely a hunk of pine. The blade is a brad nail which is pointed on one end and filed to a thin blade on the other, thus I have a scratch and cutting gauge depending on what I need. I finished it with linseed oil.

I have used it from time to time and it is quite handy when needed. It’s also nice to think that this is a unique tool that is unlike most others out there.

-- Ni faru ion el ligno!

2 comments so far

View RichCMD's profile


279 posts in 1362 days

#1 posted 08-17-2013 02:12 PM

Sometimes simple is the best. I have to admit I am curious how this actually works. I guess I am not bright enough to figure out from your picture just how the two dowels work together. I assume the smaller dowel locks the larger one to maintain a set length, but I just can’t picture how it does that.

-- Men admire the man who can organize their wishes and thoughts in stone and wood and steel and brass. Ralph Waldo Emerson

View Dave Rutan's profile

Dave Rutan

1368 posts in 1609 days

#2 posted 08-17-2013 02:27 PM


Think of the smaller dowel as a wedge. It runs in a hole above the beam and within the block it is wedge shaped. Pushed in one direction it locks the beam in place. Pushed in the other direction it frees the beam for movement.

-- Ni faru ion el ligno!

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