Woodworking Tool Reviews

Oneida Air Systems Dust Deputy Review

The Marketing & PR department over at Oneida has to be pretty good one, claiming as they have that it successfully retains 99% dust, using a mini cyclone attaching onto a 5 gallon bucket lid which in turn, acts as a particle separator for a shop vac.

That’s a pretty tall order, so we investigated. The “secret” to a clean work space is keeping dust to a minimum and if you value your sanity, you’ll agree. But there doesn’t seem to be an adequate dust collector on the market emptying out the shop vac and maintaining a high suction level. But, as you may have noticed, shop vacs are noisy.

We came into the review with high hopes and expectations, judging by the stellar reviews given by other woodworking communities and haven’t been disappointed so far putting it into operation the moment we got our hands on it. After ensuring our shop vac tub and filter were as clean as possible, we took a look at the filter after use and were amazed to see only a light coat of dust inside. This came after using Dust Deputy for a week AND emptying out the 5 gallon bucket five times, making this appliance a godsend.

We individually bought the cyclone from Rockler for $60 plus shipping, and because we had the extra hoses and shop vac attachments, didn’t require the full kit. However, if you don’t have the hoses and attachments we would recommend purchasing the full kit at $100.

 
Having attached the cyclone the bucket’s lit, we cut a ½” plywood piece to the inside of the lid to serve as reinforcement. Filling the 5 gallon bucket to about 1/3 of its volume with 16 penny framing nails, and inserting the Dust Deputy bucket inside the bucket of nails ensures that it won’t fall over. However, we would recommend constructing a cart to hold the two as a long term measure.

Though the price of the Dust Deputy is a bit on the higher side, it will also save you time and money spent cleaning out your shop vac filter. Furthermore, there is no drop in suction power with a hose’s extended length. We give it a 4 out of 5 stars for its perfect performance and highly recommend that you add it to your shop environment.

Makita 5094DWD 14.4v Cordless 3 3/8

Makita 5094DWD 14.4v Cordless 3 3/8” Circular Trim SawYou might not think you need the Makita 5094DWD 14.4v Cordless Circular Trim Saw Kit , until you own one and then life is not the same without it.

The first thing you notice about the saw is how small it is; not so much as a unit, but in terms of its blade size which clocks in at 3 3/8”. And while it isn’t going to be cutting through large stocks any time soon, this is a great little tool for cutting thinner pieces of stock. Clocking in at 4.6lbs and total length 12 5/8”, both including battery dimensions, the saw can be used for long periods of time without user fatigue setting in. The overall feel from front to back, is also incredibly well balanced for a saw of this size.

Powered by a 14.4v 2.6A NiMH single battery, the kit includes a multi-voltage charger kit and one 1.2A battery. The charger itself can handle both Makita pod-style NiCad and NiMh batteries ranging from 7.2v to 14.4v; the charging times themselves can vary based on voltage and capacity but on average, it takes an empty battery roughly 90 minutes to recharge.

Lumber Wizard Metal Detector Review

Metal detectors are of particular importance to woodworkers; how many times have you heard horror stories of expensive saw and planer blades being rendered useless by a stray piece of metal lodged deep in a piece of stock that wasn’t identified until it was too late?

Reviewing the Lumber Wizard , we would like to mention that we owned a downgraded version of this model and the only reason we upgraded was the 2” limit. The Little Wizard allows detection for up to 2” of wood so anything beyond that doesn’t register and needless to say we needed the large scanning field.

Now, the Lumber Wizard is just a fancy name for your regular metal detector in terms of core functionality and is priced at a reasonable $99.95 but is worth the investment in terms of the money and time you’re saving replacing other blades. There have been a few revisions to the core functionality; the latest model is the Lumber Wizard III but at its core this review covers all the basics.

Kreg 90 Degree Corner Clamps Review

Kreg 90 Degree Corner ClampsAmateur woodworkers will recognize the annoyances that are involved in clamping 90 degree corners and though there are several corner clamps on the market, we decided to pick up a few pieces of Kreg’s new corner clamps. These clamps although ideal for pocket hole joinery, are really equally suitable for any 90 degree joints.

Kreg’s Corner clamps can only, as the name suggests, be used for clamping degree joints which could include picture frames, box and drawer constructions, shelving or T-joints. They are built with heat treated steel and have a nickel plated finish for sustainability and long-lasting effectiveness. The new adjustment nut added to the adjustable spring loading mechanism is great, making adjustments both fast and easy.¬ The clamp is easily releasable without extensive force via the blue rubber coated clamp release. It is ideal for woodworking and cabinet construction owing to its ability to be set for varying thickness levels up to 1.25” (1 ¼”).

There is one fixed blue steel clamp surface with inset 90 degree faces to assist in accuracy during construction. Its unique design allows it to be used for constructions like fixing shelves, instaling drawer dividers or in box-holes. The clamp surfaces are roughly 2” x 1” in width providing a solid clamping surface, preventing damage to the work pieces, especially where soft wood has been used. The secondary mating clamp piece provides a self-squaring joint (preset at a 90 degree angle) as it is set on a screw swivel head.

During use, Kreg’s Clamps are easily clamped and opened, this can easily be done with one hand. During clamping, both pieces are flushed,  making it easier to set the clamps and holding the joint securely level during the time the glue takes to dry. Two Kreg corner clamps hold a T-Joint piece firmly at a 90 degree angle allowing it to be placed virtually anywhere. And while Kreg does manufacture clamps that address this purpose more fully, the 90 degree corner clamp can just as easily be used for pigeon hole joinery, as previously mentioned.

This clamps’ handiness extends to setting shelves into dados and toenailing because they work great to hold the joint at the angle required while you drive in the nails.

Basically, anywhere you need a 90 degree joint to be held together and as long as the material is less that 1.25” thick, these clamps are perfect acting like a pair of hands. This is especially useful if you’re working alone in your workshop,