Blue Spruce Layout Tools
Words and photos: Raf Nathan
This is a new take on wood tool design. Maker Dave Jeske of the USA has chosen an aluminium for the body of these tools with a hardened steel blade. The aluminium is superbly milled with an infill of curly maple to give the design a boost. In fact the attention to detail is excellent with all tools having crisp chamfers and everything looking perfect.
There are two finishes available for the steel and aluminium; a satin and anodised finish, or a dark ceramic coating. I preferred the anodised look with a satin steel. The tools can be ordered with different colours and wood infills for those wanting a customised look.
There are bevel gauges and try and mitre squares available with either 4" or 6" long steel blades. Personally I would opt for the 6" versions and as I find the larger size more useful for most workshop jobs.
The mitre and try-squares can be recalibrated if needed by adjusting two allen screws in the base of the stock. Just turn the screw with the allen key to move the blade either way.
Yes, you can buy cheap squares and bevels that will mostly do the job. However if you want quality tools to help you create quality woodwork then consider tools from makers like Blue Spruce who put care and enthusiasm into every tool that exits their workshop.
At time of writing the sliding bevel and mitre square are each US$125 and the square US$100.
Review tools supplied by Blue Spruce Toolworks www.bluesprucetoolworks.com
Note: The tools shown here will be awarded to Popular Choice Student Awards winner, announced via Feb 5 eNewsletter!