Ping - Leon (Trials and Tribulations of Finding an Accurate Fence)

Leon,
Interested in hearing what your conclusions are in testing and evaluating several of the high-end fences. Have you had a chance to try the Incra selection as yet ?
Not many get to try this many fences so if you could make a post that summarizes the pro's and con's of each you've had an opportunity to try, it would make a great reference for the archives.
Thanks,
Bob S.
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Bob, I sit here high-end miter gaugeless. I have only tried the Interim Silver Kreg and the Osborne 3 and returned both.
But, you said high end fences. The "fences" on both setups have their good and bad points. The Kreg fence will accept 3 or 4 different style stops and each stop IIRC has its own adjustable cursor to accurately locate its position in relationship to the blade using the stick on rule that sets on top of the fence. You can readjust the cursor if you change to a blade with a different kerf. The fence can be moved back and forth on the miter gauge so that you can support the work closer to the blade. Being able to relocate the position of the fence helps keep the fence close to the blade when setup to cut miters. Additionally the Kreg has a stop that it located on the back of the fence that indexes the fence back to the exact location that it was in before sliding the fence closer to the blade for cutting miters. Indexing back exactly by mechanical contact insures that your rule remains accurate for setting up your stops.
The Osborne 3 fence feels nicer in that the face is smooth and with out grooves for mounting accessories. The down side is that you don't have a grove for adding accessories. It too will adjust closer to the blade for more support closer to the blade. Like the angle miter adjustment on the Osborne 3 the fence telescopes also to about 40". This is only useful to extend the location of the stop that comes with the miter gauge. The fence extension does not appear to be substantial enough to support the wood itself. A piece of self sticking sand paper that reminded me of composition asphalt shingle is included with the Osborn 3 to apply to the face of the fence to help guard against the wood from slipping. The piece of sand paper is over sized and you would will have to trim it to fit the fence. The Osborn 3 fence has a self stick rule but the fence does not have a positive mechanical stop to rezero its location if you move it closer to the blade for miter cuts. I suppose you could make a couple of reference marks but IMHO a positive stop tends to be most accurate. The rule and stop of the Osborne 3 are lacking and seem like an after thought. The stop literally covers the rule so that you cannot read the rule unless you are using the metric side of the rule. I was not impressed. The Osborne 3 fence ends are angled at 45 degrees on both ends so that the fence will not come in contact with the blade if you have the blade tilted and the fence is adjusted close to the blade. With that in mind, this feature may invite one to think that is OK to use the miter gauge and fence on the side that the blade is tilting towards. The problem with this is that your waste falls on top of the blade and back at you. You should always use the miter gauge on the opposite side of the blade that the blade tilts towards when the blade is tilted. The waste will simply fall to the top of the table. For my money, the Kreg fence is the way to go. I now have on order the latest Blue Kreg miter gauge and fence system. Providing that the indexing pin on the miter gauge fit snugly rather than loosely like the one on the first Kreg, I should be happy. I have not yet resorted to considering the Incra. I have avoided the Incra miter gauges because of all of the real-estate that is taken up behind the fence. In the event that the next Kreg does not pan out, I will take a look at the Incras.

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Thanks Leon - nice summary.
I have two Incra's as I said in an earlier post and although not perfect in every way - they are excellent. But after reading what you want (reset stops after changing angle) the Incra's I have - don't have that feature.
I wish you luck in your quest....
Bob S.

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