In this day and age, technology is really starting to find it's way into the woodworking work shop with highly accurate and low cost tools making it easier and quicker than ever to make accurate measurments and cuts.
The dimensions of the Beall Tilt Box measure 2 3/8” wide x 2 3/8” high x 1 3/8” deep with an all metal body that feels durable and able to sustain inadvertent (light) knocks and bumps around the shop. The Box is powered by a standard 9v battery, which means, even if the battery dies on you, it can be replace in minutes with a fresh one, thus avoiding waiting for a battery to charge. The unit also comes packed with a Philips-head screwdriver allowing for easy battery compartment access. There is a large LCD display on its front of the unit that is quite easy to read. To power the unit on, simply touch the the ON/OFF button.
This model serves as a digital inclinometer which allows users to measure angles relative to true zero degrees, but at the same time to measure angles relative to a reference surface, which is a feature that is unique to the Beall Tilt Box and one that’s highly valued in this kind of a tool. The accuracy on the tool is very good and it can easily distinguish between angles up to a 0.05 resolution ensuring near perfect setups on various machines. On either side of the tool, there are a set of powerful magnets that that are used to attach to tool to the metal surface to me set or measured.
Beall Tilt Box In Use
Usage of the Beall is relatively simple and straightforward and to illustrate this, we’re going to set up a table saw as an example. Before commencing, ensure the blade was perpendicular to the table at a zero degree setting by placing the Tilt Box on the table surfaces close to the blade. Switching to ‘0’ on the ON/OFF switching panel automatically zeroed the tool giving the table a zero degree value. Using the magnets on either side we are easily able to attach the Tilt Box to the blade and then we waited for a moment for the value on the LCD screen to settle, giving us an accurate measure of the angle. You want to reach a ‘0’ since that means the blade is square to the table, which is the angle you want.
Should your saw blade not consistently return to dead square according to the Tilt Box (don’t place any faith on the bevel scale), you might need to make a few adjustments to the stop mechanism for future use.
What about when you’re looking for a more odd degree angle? Follow what we did and then Tilt Box is attached to the blade’s body, wind down the level adjustment wheel keeping an eye out on the LCD screen of the Box until it hits the desired number.
The same process works for most other machine set ups as well. You’ll need to set either bevels or the blade square for miter saws and for band saws can use one of two methods: set the table square to the blade or set the table to the angle required. However, because of the flexibility of a bandsaw’s blades, the most you will probably get is an estimate and the cut won’t be as perfect as what you could achieve with, say, a more rigid circular saw blade.
Getting The Absolute Angle
When referring to the “absolute angle”, we are referring to an angle in relation to the real world, like checking angles with a spirit level.
The Beall Tilt Box can achieve this functionality with ease, providing an absolute angle measurement in relation with the Earth. This is useful for when you need a quick, rough angle measurement but it does have its limitations, the primary one being that it’s not as accurate as a regular longer spirit level would be, since it has a very small footprint, lengthwise. To obtain the absolute angle, all you need to do is use the ON/OFF button and set it on a surface; the Tilt Box will do the rest. You can also use the Zero button for setting machinery in relative mode and if you want to get back to absolute mode, just press the button again.
The Tilt Box comes factory calibrated which means it’ll be ready to operate the moment you unpack it and while in some cases (like recovery from a bad fall or sustaining consistent knocks around the shop), it will need to be re-calibrated, the re-calibration is easy provided you follow the included instructions.
Over all, we found the Beall Tilt Box very easy to use and intuitive and would absolutely recommend it for achieving great angle cutting results. Both keeping in perspective its price or not, this is one tool that you definitely want in your workshop. You can hold us to that!