Re: Digital Sliding T-Bevel - Mini Review

Ordered from Lee Valley online on 2/16, it was delivered on 2/23. (US$27.90 with shipping)
Made in China, and packaged by nasty, vindictive sinners in consumer hell, it takes an act of Congress and a dedicated tool to get it out of its packaging, but once decamped, it has a quite acceptable fit and finish, with no rough edges, and a nice feel in the hand. The battery "CR2032" is included. The moving parts work smoothly and while it is not a "Starrett", it is not flimsy and one doesn't get the feeling that it will fall apart during normal wood shop use. Due to the knob _not_ being in the way of either reference edge, it will immediately become my go-to T-Bevel gauge, even without the digital read out capability (my current traditional gauge has the old wingnut, which is beyond aggravating to use). I do like that it has an inverse button, and the capability to save the current reading in memory for more accurate transfer.
I tested it for accuracy against my Starrett and a Wixley digital guage:
~ Ninety degrees with Starrett:
https://picasaweb.google.com/111355467778981859077/EWoodShopJigsFixturesMethods#5712469809213640130
~ Forty Five degrees with Starrett:
https://picasaweb.google.com/111355467778981859077/EWoodShopJigsFixturesMethods#5712468474063185506
~ Table Saw Blade (Wixley & T-Bevel) Readouts:
https://picasaweb.google.com/111355467778981859077/EWoodShopJigsFixturesMethods#5712467453727749778
(you may just be able to scroll to the right upon selecting the first photo)
Would I pay $60 (with shipping) from General for it? Probably not. Amazon also has it for $US35.95 +/- (without shipping). If you have a definite need, you will likely find that a good price.
That said, for the price from Lee Valley (US$27.90 with shipping), a resounding "Yes". I believe it is definitely going to be useful ... one of those tools that, when you need its function in a pinch, it will pay for itself by being there and you will be tickled that you had the foresight to have in your bag of tricks.
I'll be glad to answer any questions here.
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Then answer this. Since (according to your picture) your Wixey is now essentially useless, how about selling it to me for $5.00?
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On 2/23/2012 6:09 PM, Dave wrote:

Plus $40 shipping, handling and aggravation ... you got a deal!
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Aggravation is coming cheap these days. Must be the economy. <G>
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On 2/23/2012 6:33 PM, Robatoy wrote:

And especially considering it's gold plated.
<the aggravation>
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"Swingman" wrote in message wrote:

Plus $40 shipping, handling and aggravation ... you got a deal! ==============================================================That sounds totally Ebay. :)
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On 2/23/2012 6:01 PM, Swingman wrote:

Make a correction there. General has it for US$34.95 on their US website ... I was obviously reading the Canadian version before posting the above.
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https://picasaweb.google.com/111355467778981859077/EWoodShopJigsFixturesMethods#5712469809213640130
https://picasaweb.google.com/111355467778981859077/EWoodShopJigsFixturesMethods#5712468474063185506
https://picasaweb.google.com/111355467778981859077/EWoodShopJigsFixturesMethods#5712467453727749778
thanks carl, will have to put it on my list<g>
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On 2/23/2012 6:01 PM, Swingman wrote:

https://picasaweb.google.com/111355467778981859077/EWoodShopJigsFixturesMethods#5712469809213640130
https://picasaweb.google.com/111355467778981859077/EWoodShopJigsFixturesMethods#5712468474063185506
https://picasaweb.google.com/111355467778981859077/EWoodShopJigsFixturesMethods#5712467453727749778
I got mine today too. I'm not quite so enamored of it though...
The blade is thin. It bends easily. Mine was warped out of the box.
I didn't get quite the accuracy readings you did. In setting the blade to the home position, I'm not all that thrilled with the plastic housing; it's not very sturdy, and the blade opening is much wider than the (thin) blade, which means it can flop around in the opening, which in turn leaves me less than confident that I've got the blade properly "zeroed". In any case, after setting it there and zeroing the readout, I tested it on two different machinists squares. Got about 90.1 each time. Moved the blade back to the "home" position, and the readout never seems to hit perfect zero. I also tested it on a couple of 45 degree triangles, and seemed to get even less accuracy; 44.8 degrees in one case.
I also noticed that if you loosen the lock screw enough and wiggle the blade (towards and away from the home position), I get a little bit of "backlash" in the mechanism; probably a degree or so of "play" between the blade slot and the key-way in which it rides. This seems to go away when you tighten the screw a little bit, but I don't know if that might contribute to the margin of error I'm seeing, and it's something else I didn't expect.
However, it doesn't seem like a tenth of a degree is going to cause me much consternation for what I plan to use it for, but others might not see it that way.
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On 2/23/2012 10:14 PM, Steve Turner wrote:

I'm wondering if the fact that the blade on your unit being warped had something to do with that?
The blade on mine is actually thicker than the one on my old Crown t-bevel.
Try zeroing with the unit on a flat surface (I used my table saw top) and making sure the blade is contact with the surface as you push the zero button. (I didn't bother to push the blade into the handle to zero, per the instructions, after the first time ... zeroing at full extension)
Since I'm AR about using the same reference edge for all measuring any way, I also made sure that the two measuring edges of the unit were also the two that were used in doing the zero.

It was my thought in looking at the way it worked, that in order to get an accurate reading that you indeed need to tighten the screw some what.

Hell, anything I can set to a 1/10 of a degree is going to work for me in the shop... if we had the ability to focus on 1/128 of a degree, we'd be fixated on that degree of granularity. :)
As for as what others see ... fuck'em!
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On 2/23/2012 11:14 PM, Steve Turner wrote:

Great review by both of you, good job guys, and the pics were super Swing.

My comment: my Wixy showed all my tools were 1/10th of a degree off, same as Carl's showed, and yours showed. Seems odd to me that all our tools are off 1/10th of a degree.
The good thing is 1/10th of a degree is NOTHING in woodwork, and pretty much breathing hard on a fence will change it 1/10th of a degree. The T-bevel shows 1/100th of a degree, particularly useless in wood work, more useful in grinding the Hubble Telescope lens:-)
Also, I think I would rather have the T-Bevel than the Wixy as it has more uses. I still use my old combo square to set all my 90 degree stuff, and although my ancient El-cheapo T-bevel with the wing nut worked fine for all these years, I think I'd like the digital read out.
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