Most of us prefer to purchase tools that can give us more than one single use. Sometimes it is unavoidable to have a tool do another job, but if we put out minds to it, we can often come up with other ideas for single-use tools ... which is exactly what I did lately, and here is what I came up with.
Watch it on Youtube: https://youtu.be/b2tISEsKee8
The Inclinometer or Digital Angle Finder (DAF) has been around for about 20 years or so and it was originally designed in the woodworking world as a tool to help us quickly and accurately re-set the angle of our blades primarily on the table saw and the miter saws, but there is LOTS more this little tool can do ...
The first reason people are interested in getting a Digital Angle Finder (DAF) is to quickly, easily, and accurately set the angle of their blades, often on their table saw first ...
... but then just as likely on their sliding miter saw. In both cases if you do NOT have a steel deck on either of these machines, the DAF will still work fine even just placing it on a composite aluminum deck (I also like to add a bit of pressure to make sure it is seated on the deck) ... but otherwise it works just fine.
After you are sure the deck on your bandsaw is level and square to the blade you can also tip the deck to one side or the other for what is essentially bevel cutting which could even be on inside or outside circles or arcs.
Drilling angled holes into wood is always a chore, often it is best to drill a smaller pilot hole to give the bit something to guide down on as it drills. This is especially true of the very common "twist bits" which drill just fine but are very hard to drill at an angle.
Anyone who sharpens their plane blades at a 25-degree angle, which is one of the most common angles, can use their DAF to quickly find that angle by using their DAF.
I sometimes need to bevel boards to a specific angle to give them a bit better look and find one of the easiest ways is to do this on a jointer. Here you can see that the jointer has an aluminum deck and fence, but simply using a quality hand clamp gets around the non-magnet base and fence and does an equally quick and accurate job.
I am often cutting multiple short pieces on my table saw, and the quickest and easiest method I have come up with for doing this is to simply use the DAF as a stop block. It's perfect for smaller pieces but you need to watch you don't bump and move the DAF if you are using larger pieces of wood or trying to work fast, they hold well to metal surfaces but being too aggressive means you could move the DAF slightly.
It is uncommon for me to hand plane a bevel on a board with a hand plane, but sometimes it's quicker and easier the re-setting the jointer or table saw. Here I am attempting to cut a 25-degree bevel in a short board ... and made easier by using the DAF.
Wood turners are often making jigs for holding their wood turning tools for sharpening and finding the correct angle can be a chore, but using a DAF can make quick work of trying to figure out the angle you need to be set at.
And last but not least is the common taper jig on the table saw. If you don't want to try and guess at an angle, what other tools do you have in your shop that you can accurately figure out something as fine as a One Degree angle? probably nothing, but a DAF can do this in a few moments, accurately and easily. The video shows just how easy it is.
If you have other ideas where this little tool can be used, drop me an email and so I can share your idea with others.
If you are looking for a Digital Angle finder that has magnets on ALL 3 SIDES, there is one I recommend
through Taylor Tools, the iGaging Angle Cube (click the link to view and purchase from Taylor Tools)
Copyright Colin Knecht