Hot New Tools: Issue 20

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This article is from Issue 20 of Woodcraft Magazine.

Streamline Your Sanding 

Grex 2" Angle Random Orbit Sander

The Grex sander is powerful, compact, and comfortable to use. I found that it sands quickly, can be used in tight spaces where typical random orbit sand-ers can’t reach, and the hook and loop sanding pad makes sandpaper replacement a snap. The result: an amazing amount of time saved. Note: A 60-gallon compressor or an equivalent unit is needed to operate the sander to provide sufficient air volume for the tool’s 2.2 SCFM (standard cubic feet per minute) air consumption. Operating pressure is 90 psi (6.2 bars). 

Woodcraft Tester: Jim Nuckolls
#838667, $109.99

Go Digital for Easy, Accurate Setups

Wixey Digital Height Gauge

This handy shop aid is quick and far more accurate for setups than trying to eye across a ruler set by a blade. However, I used it only occasionally until one weekend when I needed to re-rout a groove slightly deeper in a jewelry box top for an inlay. I like to leave my inlays about 1/16" (.0156") proud of the surface and scrape them down smooth, but I ended up with .024" thicker than the original inlay. Scraping this much off is an invitation to catch the scraper’s corner on the box top or cut off too much inlay. Enter the Wixey Digital Height Gauge. I placed it over the router bit, zeroed it, and raised the bit slowly until the gauge read .024". Then I re-cut the grooves. Problem solved and disaster averted! 

Woodcraft Tester: Tim Rinehart
#148380, $59.99

Protect Stationary Tools from Rust & Dings

Toolclad Magnetic Table Covers 

These padded, magnetic covers for table saws, bandsaws and scrollsaws will make your life a little easier by protecting the cast iron surface from rust and dings when not in use. The cover magnetically adheres to the surface of the table sealing out rust-causing moisture, and the padding protects from dropped tools and spilled drinks. In some cases, the cover creates a durable work surface—and who can’t use more work space?

Woodcraft Tester: Kent Harpool
Table Saw, 28 x 44", #148346, $49.99
Bandsaw, 20 x 20", #148347, $19.99
Scrollsaw, 16 x 24", #148348, $15.99

Drill Large Workpieces Easily, Accurately

Pinnacle Drill Press Table

Traditionally, drill presses include a small table not suited for woodworking. Now Pinnacle offers a 1" thick, 16 x 23" drill press table add-on that provides plenty of support for large workpieces. It also makes locating drill holes faster. With this table, I can set the fence and stop and be sure that all my holes will be drilled exactly where I want them and in a fraction of the setup time. And the new high-pressure laminate (Micro-Dot) surface “grips” the workpiece under pressure whether you use hold-downs or simply press down to hold a part in position. Installation hardware included.

Woodcraft Tester: Peter Collins
#148369, $99.99

Sing While You Work 

Makita Cordless FM/AM Jobsite/Workshop Radio

I have owned other jobsite radios, but the sound quality out this radio is awesome. The compact size and light weight make it very portable, and I can program in five of my favorite stations. Plus, I can plug in my MP3 player, too. Other features: rug-ged weather resistant design, protective bumpers, AC adaptor, and a Lithium Ion battery that offers a long run time (16 hours on a single charge). Optimum Charging System not included.

Woodcraft Tester: Jim Nuckolls
#148450, $178.00

Expand Your Workshop’s Capability 

Rousseau Workbench System

Nothing could be easier than organizing your workshop with the Rousseau Workbench System. Choose from a variety of leg and extender sets to create an assembly table, a router table base, a mitersaw stand, and other specialty work stations. Select a leg set, choose an extender depth and extender width, assemble the frame, and add your top and shelving ma-terials of choice—that’s it! To create a mobile stand just add the optional caster set. Work surface and shelf materi-als not included.

Woodcraft Tester: Peter Collins
Steel Leg Set (4), #148371, $49.99
Steel Extender Sets (6) 15", #148372, $24.99
20", #148373, $29.99
28", #148374, $34.99
40", #148375, $39.99
44", #148376, $44.99
Caster Set (4), #148377, $34.99

Drill Perfect Dollar Holes

Presidential Dollar Forstner Bit

You’ll want to try Wood-craft’s new Forstner bit if you make Judy Gale Roberts’ Presidential Dollar Display (see pages XX). It’s hard 

to beat a carbide-tipped anything when working with wood, and this bit, sized to perfectly match the diam-eter of a dollar coin, is no different. The shallow hole that I drilled was crisp and just the right size to hold the coin without excess space around the outside edge. And even though I drilled several holes in a short pe-riod of time, the bit’s sharp-ness remained like new.

Woodcraft Tester: Peter Collins
3/8" shank, #147996, $19.99

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