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A $9.99 guage thats not bad

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Review by Dave posted 05-18-2011 03:39 AM 3376 views 0 times favorited 9 comments Add to Favorites Watch
A $9.99 guage thats not bad A $9.99 guage thats not bad A $9.99 guage thats not bad Click the pictures to enlarge them

I purchased one of these gauges two years ago. And have found it worth the ten dollars I spent. It has a good brass knob and it will hold tight. The pins are of a good spring steel. After 2 years of use they are just as sharp as day one. I have just purchased a second one for general purposes. I do have a store near me so I am able to pick the one I purchase. I had to true up one of the pins on the original but it was not a big problem. The HF site has 2 reviews as follows:
This is the first HF product that I found disappointing.
1- The mortise marking points were uneven heights. They were so far off, that the shorter of the two couldn’t engage the wood. I had to file down the longer point, and then resharpen.
2- The face was not square with the beam. The face was canted at least 10*.
I had to disassemble the gauge and tweak it with a file until it was square. Of course by doing this, it created some play/slop in the gauge.
3- The finish is in terrible shape. I’ve only had this gauge a short while, but it already looks well-used.

You won’t find another mortise gauge on the market for this low of a price. But don’t expect to use this one right out of the box. It takes some work to get this one in decent working order. I wish I would have just paid the higher price for a good gauge.

(Posted on 10/16/10)
I have made an unknow amount of Mortise Gauge’s in my time. My little girl of 5 year’sld gave me one of harbor freight gauge’s for father’s day this passed year. The only thing Ican say is that it might not be as nice as some I have made in my own shop but it work’s as well as any I have ever used. I have paid as much as$120.00 for one and have sold some I have made for as much as $59.00 andlet me say look’s are not everything this tool is great for the weekend woodworker or the best woodworker’s. I put all of mine up and just use the one my baby little gave me and all the rest just lay around.

J & K Mill Work’s WV

(Posted on 9/19/10)

.. Both of mine are square and have only a slight bit of slop in the beam. I do recommend this tool for the price. Marking gauges are a easy shop made device. But these have brass inlays that make the ware on the tool minimal. The 3rd picture is a piece of oak that I made only one pass over. They do chatter on end grain. But for a pin style I am satisfied.

-- Superdav "No matter where you go - there you are." http://chiselandforge.com




View Dave's profile

Dave

11205 posts in 1586 days



9 comments so far

View Tedstor's profile

Tedstor

1505 posts in 1379 days


#1 posted 05-18-2011 09:10 AM

Small world. I’m the author of the negative review.
I actually gave up on the HF tool, took the hardware off, and used it on a shopmade gauge. Honestly, if you can find it on sale and apply a 20% coupon, its worth buying just for the hardware. But as I said before, the tool I recieved was complete crap.

Its good you were in a position to pysically inspect and hand select the gauge you bought. This is definitely not a product that should be bought via internet.

View Dennisgrosen's profile

Dennisgrosen

10850 posts in 1861 days


#2 posted 05-18-2011 11:12 AM

thank´s for rewiew and for copy the two others too superdav :-)
I have bought a fairly expencive ECE many years ago one you have to flip
to engage both pins both the way its cable of chatter down a pineboard nearly
make me giving up on using handtools
if it wasn´t for the lesson´s I had in primeryschool and knew they shuold work
I just didn´t knew what to do about it before I joined L J :-)
have seen other brand´s that not hold up to be used and the finished destroyd fast
soo….

take care
Dennis

View Dave's profile

Dave

11205 posts in 1586 days


#3 posted 05-18-2011 01:38 PM

Wow Tedstor it is a small world. Most of the stuff that ends up being crap we wind up making something else out of it. And I will say this, there are major differences between the one I bought 2 years ago and the one I got a month ago.
I feel your frustration Dennis, and the help of the LJ’s on the really strange issues that you probably can’t find the answer in a book. As far as the finish I think its shellac, they are made in India.

-- Superdav "No matter where you go - there you are." http://chiselandforge.com

View Dennisgrosen's profile

Dennisgrosen

10850 posts in 1861 days


#4 posted 05-18-2011 02:29 PM

I have just seen one newr crown or was it marbles at Mads´s home
that didn´t look good at all neither brass or screws was in good shabe
lack was falling of and compared it to an old one he has too
looked a lot better and had this speciel feeling when you tuched it
I think its becourse they use a waterbased hard lack now a days
can´t take the ding and punches over a time periode
as if they had used something ells that was a little softer or a oil treatment

Dennis

View Dave's profile

Dave

11205 posts in 1586 days


#5 posted 05-18-2011 05:18 PM

I totally agree Dennis. The older oil bases are repairable.

-- Superdav "No matter where you go - there you are." http://chiselandforge.com

View stefang's profile

stefang

13623 posts in 2080 days


#6 posted 05-19-2011 01:00 PM

Thanks for the review Dave. Sometimes the cheap stuff is good, but an experienced eye helps to judge that at the point of sale.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View Dave's profile

Dave

11205 posts in 1586 days


#7 posted 05-19-2011 01:23 PM

Thanks Mike. I’ll gamble ten dollars on a tool. I am just scared of there big stuff. I bought 2 air compressors and have since made a grill out of one and a boat anchor out of the other;)

-- Superdav "No matter where you go - there you are." http://chiselandforge.com

View Mauricio's profile

Mauricio

6901 posts in 1897 days


#8 posted 09-12-2012 04:33 PM

Funny, now there is only one 4star review on the HF site. The negative reviews are gone.

I’ve been wanting to get one but the reviews scared me away. I’ll go to the store and open it up before buying it.

Thanks for posting your review!

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

View Dave's profile

Dave

11205 posts in 1586 days


#9 posted 09-13-2012 01:44 AM

Thank you Mauricio.
I have 2 and they have done me well.
I have made 3 and rarely pick those up.

-- Superdav "No matter where you go - there you are." http://chiselandforge.com

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