Woodworking Tool Reviews

Jorgensen Cabinet Master Parallel Bar Clamps Review

 Jorgensen Cabinet Master Parallel Bar Clamps ReviewThe Jorgensen Cabinet Master from Adjustable Clamp Co. is at its best when it’s being used for cabinet construction although it does well for any other clamping and spreading jobs. What parallel bar clamps like the Jorgensen do is provide a 90 degree clamp angle where each jaw is parallel to the other.

The jaws and bars are smooth and apply equal pressure to wooden surfaces during clamping jobs; the reinforced steel and casting construction of the Jorgensen allows for a great deal of durability and sustainability. This is then in turn wrapped by bright orange, hardened plastic covers.

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JET 629004K 16-32 Plus 16 Inch 1

JET 629004K 16-32 Plus 16 Inch 1 ½ Horsepower Open Stand Drum SanderIf you’re looking to reclaim scrap or smooth out the rough edges on pieces of stock, look no further than the JET 629004K Open Stand Drum Sander . This is a great, great tool to add to your workshop and here’s why:

For starters, if your stock goes through much re-sawing, you’ll often find yourself surrounded by varying sized thin sheets or strange wedge-shaped pieces and with the drum sander, they can each be turned into uniform, thick, usable stock.  You’ll be shocked to realize how much use can be gleaned from a true, honest-to-God 1/8” of stock that fits neatly into a dado, or from a 30” board with 3/16” on one end and 9/6” on the other; most of it can be saved by sanding it down to 3/8, sawing off the smooth bits and sanding it down to ¼”.

You might want to invest in a pair of excellent calipers for use with it, since the built in gauge is not very accurate. The calipers (and a bit of patience) let you resaw your boards to about an a hundredth of an inch of thickness, before reaching for the sander.
The dust collection systems are great. Hooked up to a good dust vacuum,  you’ll find little dust on the floor.

The one issue, if it can be termed as such, is that with even fairly find sandpaper, the sander will quite likely leave lines on your wood. However, if you don’t want lines you might want to try really fine sandpaper or opt for the fancier, oscillating kind. But the lines aren’t such a big deal and it’s not that hard to change the sandpaper. So long as you’re using Jet’s Pre-Cut sandpaper or sandpaper that you’ve used based on the Jet template, it’s fairly easy and quite manageable to get it right on the first try. You don’t need to be an expert, for that to work either.

We generally like to sand along the grain and since the saw marks are usually perpendicular to the grain, it makes it a lot easier to see when all the marks have disappeared. This not only indicates a smooth board, but also uniform thickness.

The JET 62900416 is a lot quieter than a planer which, even with ear plugs tend to be quite loud. Of course, this doesn’t mean that it isn’t loud, but it’s a lot quieter than most power tools. Additionally, there isn’t any tear-out on figured woods.

Now, if you plan to take stock from ¾-1/2”, this sander might be too slow for you. But if you’re using the planer for smoothing and fine-tuning the wood’s thickness, this is a great and much quieter alternative.

All in all, we would recommend the JEW 52900416 Drum Sander.



Incra V27 Miter Gauge Review

Incra MITERV27 Miter GaugeYou might have the best table blade or saw on the market today but without a solid miter gauge to back it up, the end result is sub par at best. Gauges that come bundled in with table saws aren’t always the most accurate and in electing an 3rd party product, we went with the Incra V27 Miter Gauge’s basic budget model.

The version we reviewed was shipped in regular transparent, plastic packaging that came along with printed instructions on how to set up and use the product. The great thing about the manual was it was simple, easy to read and follow which corresponds well with how easy the gauge was to set up and use. If you’ve been around power tools before or have basic DIY knowledge, you won’t necessarily need the instructions. That said, we would advise going through the points listed alerting you to little known facts. For instance, we discovered that the V27 can also be used on machines like a router table, band saw, sanding centers and other machines with miter gauges using the ¾”x3/8” standard specification. Also included is a hex key for easy adjustments.

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Black & Decker SC 1400 Cordless 14.4v LiIon Drill/Driver Review

 Black & Decker SC 1400 Cordless 14.4v LiIon DrillBlack & Decker used to be one of the most respected brands for producing quality tools for the home handyman, which is a reputation that has slipped over the last few years although they have brought out some gems. That just might include the Black & Decker SC1400 Cordless 14.4v Lithium Ion Drill/Driver .

Having extensively used this drill for the past several months, it’s fair to say it’s received a few hard knocks along the way but for the most part, has done well for itself.

Fairly heavier than most other products currently on the market, we would hazard the battery’s capacity at somewhere around 1.5Amp hour mark since it hasn’t been included in the unit’s technical specifications. The battery should last you through a couple uses before you need to recharge it. There is one issue however with the battery in that it can’t be removed which makes it extremely difficult to replace and the only natural solution is to buy an entirely new product. This is a major weakness. It does come with its own charging dock however, much like an iPod which emits a red light during its operation. Unfortunately, you will have to depend on the battery level indicator located at the rear end of the drill, to see when it has been fully recharged.  When the small black button is held down, a set of green lights will indicate the status of the battery charge. 3 green lights means it’s on a full or nearly full charge and when it starts going down to 2, 1, etc it reflects on the battery life. This is a feature that we would respect having on other unity and because it’s a Li-Ion battery, it tends to last longer than most other regular batteries and can pull off about 90 minutes on a single charge.

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