Southeast Michigan Woodworkers

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 Post subject: Pet peeve
PostPosted: Sun Apr 30, 2017 9:52 am 
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Master

Joined: Tue Aug 05, 2014 9:09 am
Posts: 164
Location: Ypsilanti
Something that particularly gets under my skin is the when someone slops off the general acceptance of innaccurate tools by saying that we are, "woodworkers not machinist." I expect tables to be flat, saws to cut square, arbors to have little runout & fences to be rigid and repeatable. I use a caliper so often that they are never put away.


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 Post subject: Re: Pet peeve
PostPosted: Sun Apr 30, 2017 10:20 am 
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Obsessed

Joined: Fri Dec 03, 2004 8:27 pm
Posts: 1855
Location: ann arbor
+1 mitch. i have my calipers basically in my back pocket, and try to work to thousandths when possible. completely concur.


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 Post subject: Re: Pet peeve
PostPosted: Sun Apr 30, 2017 10:42 am 
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Elite

Joined: Sun Jun 30, 2013 8:51 pm
Posts: 473
Location: Warren MI.
I understand your feeling!

Working in a machine shop for 10 years taught me the meaning of having your equipment always squared/trued-up & in good working condition.

I still have some set-up & lay-out tooling from my machine shop days, Gauge blocks / 1,2,3,-blocks / Calipers & Indicators / And various other measuring equipment that I use all the time while woodworking.

Doug


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 Post subject: Re: Pet peeve
PostPosted: Mon May 01, 2017 7:28 am 
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Master

Joined: Thu Jan 02, 2014 10:08 am
Posts: 182
Location: Ann Arbor
I also use my calipers all the time and try to work as accurately as possible, usually to thousandths also. But here is a question...
I use my calipers and very accurate rulers for moderately sized boards.However, when it comes time to measure a board for a project that is say over 5' long....i use a tape measure. It seems the wrong tool since I was just using calipers and high precision rulers on other smaller pieces.

What do you use to measure out long length/width with high accuracy ?

A


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 Post subject: Re: Pet peeve
PostPosted: Mon May 01, 2017 7:41 am 
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Journeyman

Joined: Tue Apr 10, 2007 8:38 pm
Posts: 63
Location: brighton 48114
Wooden 6 foot folding rule with inside read. Too much play in a tape if you want accuracy.

George


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 Post subject: Re: Pet peeve
PostPosted: Mon May 01, 2017 8:24 am 
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Master

Joined: Tue Aug 05, 2014 9:09 am
Posts: 164
Location: Ypsilanti
Alan Grudzinski wrote:
I also use my calipers all the time and try to work as accurately as possible, usually to thousandths also. But here is a question...
I use my calipers and very accurate rulers for moderately sized boards.However, when it comes time to measure a board for a project that is say over 5' long....i use a tape measure. It seems the wrong tool since I was just using calipers and high precision rulers on other smaller pieces.

What do you use to measure out long length/width with high accuracy ?

A


For multiple longer parts, I generally make the first piece and then cut the remainder based off that comparing to the original with each cut (stacking and feeling the ends for flush). Generally for any longer parts I do a tape measure is accurate enough, with the more important aspect being that the length is consistent from piece to piece.


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 Post subject: Re: Pet peeve
PostPosted: Mon May 01, 2017 8:40 am 
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Master

Joined: Sun Feb 05, 2012 10:04 am
Posts: 299
Location: Farmington Hills, MI
This is one of those topics that has two logical aspects. I also habitually use calipers for width and thickness measurements, I also have Wixey DROs on my planer and thickness sander, and when fitting joints like mortise and tenon or plywood into a dado nailing it to better than 0.01" is important. OTOH I was reading a comment in another forum where a guy had a tracksaw with track squaring aids setup for cutting plywood cabinet sides and he was unsatisfied that the squareness of cut was out by 0.1 to 0.2mm across the length of the piece. Trying to hold squareness tolerances of 0.004" to 0.008" on a 24" or 30" long plywood piece for a cabinet box is, in my opinion spending time and energy where the will be no payback. My rule of thumb is to work to 1/64" on lineal dimensions of big parts and save the calipers for fitting joints.

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Kevin (Specialist in reconstituting the wood after a wayward toolpath)


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 Post subject: Re: Pet peeve
PostPosted: Mon May 01, 2017 8:54 am 
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Master

Joined: Thu Jan 02, 2014 10:08 am
Posts: 182
Location: Ann Arbor
^^^^ what is the measuring device that you use to get to a 1/64" resolution on long linear parts?


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 Post subject: Re: Pet peeve
PostPosted: Mon May 01, 2017 10:34 am 
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Master

Joined: Tue Oct 11, 2016 9:39 am
Posts: 100
Location: Plymouth
The counter-argument is that the ability to measure and maintain tools within these sorts of tolerances is a relatively new thing. Making beautiful furniture (or anything out of wood) is very old. There are countless mortise and tenon joints in the wild that we might consider "sloppy" if we deconstructed them. But when put together they look good, and in terms of durability, have more than proven their mettle.

I think the "woodworker, not machinist" trope is more a comment about the situation where we end up spending more time trying to get the tool "right" than we do actually using the tool to 1) see if it works "right" for the task at hand and 2) do the actual woodworking task at hand. I know I have been guilty of this, and will be again in the future. :)

I think the "woodworker, not machinist" thing is something that is often said in the hand tool community. And undoubtedly, some folks are total jerks about it and mean it in a bad way. But I think some folks are actually just making the point that when you are working by hand, there's a certain slower pace and hand-to-tool feel that you will have to make small adjustments as you work... a bad fence on a power jointer and before you know it you're undersized and have to go back to the lumberyard... a #7 that isn't dead nuts flat is going to be fine if you just follow your principles of working to your gauge line and don't take too deep of a cut.

Ultimately, I think it goes back to something we discussed in the thread about Dominoes vs. "real" M&T joints. What matters is taking the journey that you enjoy. Having high standards for your tools and your finished projects is clearly a good thing. :)

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- Nathan


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 Post subject: Re: Pet peeve
PostPosted: Mon May 01, 2017 1:19 pm 
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Master

Joined: Sun Feb 05, 2012 10:04 am
Posts: 299
Location: Farmington Hills, MI
Alan Grudzinski wrote:
^^^^ what is the measuring device that you use to get to a 1/64" resolution on long linear parts?


For parts up to 12" I have an Incra scale that works with a 0.5mm mechanical pencil and has 0.5mm holes at 1/64ths. Bigger that that for ripping my tablesaw/router table has the Incra TSIII fence system that has repeatable stops with the Incra racks at 1/32" and a dial to set between the stops...the dial has 0.001"graduations but I typically only use it if the rack doesn't get me within 1/64th of my target. For crosscutting I have a Festool Kapex with UG stands and outriggers. The scales here are 1mm graduations and are easily settable to 1/3mm which is a bit under 1/64". Once these have been dialed in on initial setup working to 1/64th is fast and easy.

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Kevin (Specialist in reconstituting the wood after a wayward toolpath)


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 Post subject: Re: Pet peeve
PostPosted: Mon May 01, 2017 1:46 pm 
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Obsessed
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Joined: Sat Dec 11, 2004 5:59 pm
Posts: 1599
Location: Northville, MI
I use a story stick and hardly ever use a ruler or caliper. Now my machines, that's a different story.

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Jim Young
http://www.simoli.net


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 Post subject: Re: Pet peeve
PostPosted: Mon May 01, 2017 4:02 pm 
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Master

Joined: Tue Oct 11, 2016 9:39 am
Posts: 100
Location: Plymouth
Jim Young wrote:
I use a story stick and hardly ever use a ruler or caliper. Now my machines, that's a different story.


This really looks like a brilliant way to work. I tried to set one up for the last project I did and ended up bailing on using it part way because, frankly, as my first attempt, I did a bad job of setting up the story stick. Whoops. Live and learn. ;) On a project soon I need to resolve to try this approach again. It really looks preferable to using a rule so dang much, but old habits die hard and all that.

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- Nathan


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 Post subject: Re: Pet peeve
PostPosted: Fri May 05, 2017 4:46 pm 
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Obsessed
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Joined: Tue Aug 22, 2006 1:39 pm
Posts: 5904
Location: Livonia
For measuring, I use rulers, tape measures and calipers. For layout, I try as much as possible to use 1-2-3 blocks, setup bars, story sticks etc.

I too shoot for as much accuracy as I can get, but recognize that the wood will seasonally move more than the tolerances I'm trying to maintain. When all is said and done, if the parts fit together properly, you're accurate enough, but working to a high degree of precision WILL ensure that the fit will be satisfactory.

That said, I've found that building guitars is a whole 'nuther world. I never used feeler gauges in woodworking (other than as shims) until I started building guitars; now I use them ALL THE TIME...

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>>--Steve Sawyer->>
A bad day working with tools is better than a good day doing most of the other things I have to do.
blog: http://www.stephensawyer.com


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