Newsletter Article: 18 Ways to use a Combination Square
18 Reasons Why I Love my Combination Squares
By Luther Shealy
There are a lot of well-designed woodworking squares on the market today. There are also a lot of tried and true vintage squares out there. I know, being a bit of a tool hound, I have owned just about all of them at one time or another. But for all the squares that are sitting in my workshop, the square I tend to reach for is my 12 Combination Square. I have two, premium, very accurate, combination squares – a Starrett and a PEC. I find them equal in accuracy and quality. I keep one in my traveling tool kit and one in my tool chest near my workbench. So if I could do it all over again, I would save the money buying all those unused squares and just purchase a premium combination square (or two).
OK, so why do I prefer combination squares? That’s easy. Because there are so many things you can do with a good combination square. How many you ask? Well here are pictures of some of my favorite ways to use a combination square.
Marking a board for a 90 degree crosscut
Marking a board for a 45 degree crosscut
Checking the end of a board for square
Checking the edge of a board for square
Striking a line parallel to an edge
Laying out a mortise
Finding the center of a board
Checking a glue-up for square
Checking my jointer fence for square
Checking my table saw blade for square
Checking my table saw blade for 45 degrees
Checking if my table saw blade is parallel to the miter slot
Checking to see if my table saw fence is parallel to the miter slot
Setting my router fence parallel to the miter slot
Setting the height of a bit in my router table
Setting the height of a bit in my handheld router
Measuring the depth of a dado, rabbit, or mortise
Setting my mortiser for distance away from the fence
How many more ways can you think of to use a combination square?