Thread: go digital cheaply
21st May 2010, 04:01 PM #1
go digital cheaply
I am a very inexperienced woodworker currently working on a project which I hope to bring to production eventually. I can't justify a big budget, so have had to find ways of creating a precision product with the bare essentials.
I am well aware that many of you will be able to produce this idea much more neatly, but this actually works.
I brought a digital vernier gauge on ebay for $12 on ebay (including postage from Hong Kong! And then a digital protractor for about $40.
I have set these up to provide me with an accurate measurment to set up my Artisan rip saw ($150 on ebay) and my DeWalt B&D radial arm saw ($160 on ebay).
By using simply jigs to hold the caliper which I remove when the setting is made. I can achieve accurate rip cuts and also attain a high precision of depth cuts using my (home made) dado set. (3 cheap saw blades and washers).
It all works really well.
I haven't made a bracket yet for the digital protractor, but have included a pic of how it will be mounted. Of course, the pivot of the protractor has to be directly over the centre of the saw post.
I would dearly love to have all the right gear, and making do sure has lots of frustrations and lost time, but when needs must, it is better than squinting at a tape measure and fiddling round with a protractor stolen from my son's school bag )
I think the pics say it all, but i would happily answer any questions. firstname.lastname@example.org. (I don't come here very often, but think that it is a brilliant resource)
Last edited by clivew; 21st May 2010 at 04:05 PM. Reason: mistake in text
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21st May 2010, 07:06 PM #2
Clever. I make too little use out of my digital vernier guage, so this is something I will try also.
21st May 2010, 09:53 PM #3
thanks very much.
22nd May 2010, 11:33 AM #4
Pretty cheap alternative to a couple of Wixleys. A digital vernier gauge for $12, can't get any cheaper than that. If it works and gives repeatable results then great.
Like the look of that RAS, paid $800 for mine secondhand.
22nd May 2010, 01:44 PM #5
Yes, i was so pleased with the RAS. it was in bits, so a bit of a gamble, but turned out to be perfect. What a good saw they are... right at the start of this project i made my biggest blunder ever and got a new 12 inch sliding mitre saw. Too big, Too dangerous and Too expensive )
6" 150mm Digital CALIPER VERNIER GAUGE MICROMETER,A189 - eBay, Meters, Electrical, Industrial. (end time 25-May-10 13:12:36 AEST)
This is the link to the gauge.
23rd May 2010, 02:25 PM #6
G'day Clive and welcome!!
That is one smart idea!
23rd May 2010, 06:42 PM #7
thanks artme. for the welcome and the compliment. I'm not too good at community, mostly a lurker! So both are quite unique to me.
26th May 2010, 07:18 AM #8
on a roll now
I recently brought a thicknesser.
This is the way I used the gauge on it.
The small clamp simply screws on to where the perspex sight gauge was, though I did have to hunt around for longer screws.
The only unexpected bits were:
* A groove is requred to allow the gauge to side properly
* Setting up the depth
To set the depth, I finally figured out that all I had to do was put a piece of timber thru the thicknesser, slacken off the mounting screw to allow the whole gauge to slide up and down and then put the timber into the gauge mouth.
Then just slide the whole gauge down till the stem of the depth gauge touches down on the thicknesser bed and voila!
It is interesting to see the readout go up as you feed the stock in. It is quite alarming really, for something you would imagine would be solid.
I think that this relates to why these cheap machines snipe so badly, and it is discussed in a really good post about snipe, which I will add a link here to when i find it again.
Last edited by clivew; 26th May 2010 at 07:21 AM. Reason: adding link
26th May 2010, 09:35 AM #9
Was thinking about how it would go on a thickneser ,and voila you have done it. So I guess you bought several of these.
Well done, improvisation at work. No more squinting at a rule or tape measure.
26th May 2010, 10:46 AM #10
Thanks Pops, it's funny you should say that, because I just ordered my second gauge. It was getting a little fiddly taking it on and off to check thickness etc. The batteries are unbelievably cheap from that site too.
29th May 2010, 12:00 AM #11
Well done, I like to see a bit of thinking going on and a solution found, specially a cheap one!
2nd Jun 2010, 12:18 AM #12
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