Starrett tools, minor gloat, and RFC on double squares


I recently agreed to build a couple of bedside tables for a buddy of mine. He wanted something constructed of cherry to match his bed.
He wanted to pay me fair market value but I insisted that he just pay my lumber bill (with 50% extra purchased so that could be picky about grain selection and still be left with a modest bonus to my inventory.
Since I would not accept "payment" he bought me a the 12" Starrett combination square with the center-finding and protractor heads as a "tip".
http://www.leevalley.com/wood/page.aspx?c=2&p2596&cat=1,42936
I have never owned a good combination sqaure before. This thing is sweet. It's heft and action are flawless, and the etching is crisp making it very (very) readable.
I have found that I use it as a marking guage in conjunction with a making knife. I can set the gauge at, say, 1" and easily "split the line" etched on the rule. This was not possible with a cheap combination square as the head would not lock really well, and the graduations were tougher to read in chrome.
The only problem I have found with useing the combination square is this way is that it is a bit back-heavy when marking a small offset like a 1/4". This got me thinking that I would really get enjoy using a smaller double square for many of these tasks.
Starrett makes a 4" double square for about $50. I am sure that the readability and overal build quality will be essentially identical to my combination square. Lee Valley makes a 4" DS that "appears" very similar.
http://www.leevalley.com/wood/page.aspx?c=2&pD279&cat=1,42936
Could anyone who has ever touched one of the LV units offer an opinion as to how it compares to a Starrett?
Thanks,
Steve
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Stephen M wrote:

I own the 12" Starrett set, a 6" combo Starrett, and two 4" Lee Valley doubles.
The 6" is my daily driver. This guy and a saddle square live in my apron at all times. If the 6" is ever damaged beyond repair, I think I'd have to have a proper, public burial for it. <G>
I use the 4" units and the 6" as marking gauges all the time. The 4" models are _very good_, with slightly less of the "feel" of the Starrett 6", buy they were significantly less money. I'd say the LV models lock the blade as well as the Starrett.
All that said, I'd buy all of them again.
Barry
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Barry,
Thanks for the 1st hand asessment. That's exactly what I was looking for.
You certainly have a well-equipped stable. Why two 4" double squares? I would think that with the the 6 you hould still save 2 "settings" at a time.
-Steve

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Stephen M wrote:

Squares are like clamps. <G>
If I have 2, I need to hold 3 settings, if I have 4... Of course, one still needs to have a decent blade extension to mark across the board. Then there's depth....
Let's not go down bevel gage street.
Barry
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Hope I am not intruding here. Have studied the classic metrology tools and while they have a million uses, some are difficult to execute. Holding and marking for example. Maybe have a look at my T-square. Will rest on stock as narrow as 5/8" square, leaves your other hand free for marking and positioning. See http://www.patwarner.com/t_square.html link for more.
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Nice design, Pat. Next time I have an extra $60, I might order one.....
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Stephen M wrote:

I have several, but my favorite is the 6" Starrett double. I find it more useful than the combination square 95% of the time. I don't mark at 45 often. However, I had a local shop owner @ Beaumont's tools actually call & order a satin chrome blade for it. The standard blade is steel without a finish, and prone to rusting. That was several years ago - as they do tend to last. But I would check first.
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John Hofstad-Parkhill Wrote: > Stephen M wrote:-

> mine.

> at

> actually

> as

I have wondered about this for a long time, but didn't want to ask. I have a double square, but can someone explain the advantage of it over a combo square? Am I missing some uses for the second side that I can't envision?
thanks-it was time to get enough courage to ask this question.
--
toolmiser


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I've never used the LV square, but I have a more or less identical one that has become the most used square I own. get it, you won't regret it.
--



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