Hot New Tools: Issue 37

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This article is from Issue 37 of Woodcraft Magazine.

Smoother operator

Delta 22-590 13" Portable Planer

Delta’s newest benchtop planer offers a few interesting details that set this model apart from the rest. Like other top-ranking models, the 22-590 sports a three-knife cutterhead that, at 90 cuts per inch, produces a nearly flawless finished surface. One improvement over Delta’s previous model lies in the double-sided replaceable knives; better steel and a slightly lower cutting angle allow the edges to stay sharper 25% longer. Considering that replacement blades cost $50 a set, this can translate into big savings. Improved chip collection not only means a cleaner shop, but also better surface quality, since lumber can get dinged when chips lodge under the outfeed rollers.

Several planers have preset depth stops, but the 22-590 offers a dial-a-thickness depth gauge marked in 1⁄32" increments between 1⁄8" and 11⁄4" (see inset, below). This extra adjustability enables you to set the cutterhead a hair higher than your desired thickness, leaving extra material for final surface cleanup.

#847358  $529.99
Tester: Joe Hurst-Wajszczuk

The cure for the dullest knife in the drawer

Work Sharp Knife Sharpening System

The Work Sharp’s popularity proves that woodworkers want sharp tools, just as long as they have an easy means of getting them that way. Building on chisel and plane iron success, the company has devised a knife-sharpening system that similarly addresses past excuses for working with dull blades. The drive pulley and tensioner easily attach to the Work Sharp in minutes. Once attached, the adjustable bevel guide makes sharpening intuitive. Compared to the flat grind obtained with stones, the flexible belt establishes a longer-lasting convex grind. The system works on everything from kitchen knives to scissors to pruning shears.

#151270  $59.99
#151171  replacement belts $9.95
Tester: Kent Harpool

Can’t-miss caliper

Galbert Turner’s Caliper

This caliper is different from any other measuring device you might already own. Unlike traditional turning calipers, where you set the opening by measuring or by setting it against a mating part, the Galbert Turner’s Caliper functions much like a turner’s tape measure, providing an accurate numeric measurement of the diameter while a piece is being turned.

To use, simply press the stylus against your work, even as it’s being turned. With the caliper in one hand and a parting tool in the other, I can quickly and accurately cut any diameter from 1⁄2" to 23⁄4" without reaching for another tool. (Showing is easier than telling, especially with turning. To watch the tool in action, go to

#151266  $79.99
Tester: Ben Bice

Safer sawing at 120 volts

1.75-HP SawStop Professional Cabinet Saw

By replacing the 3-hp motor with a 1.75-hp motor used in its contractor saws, SawStop created a more affordable, fully capable, finger-saving cabinet saw that you can plug into any standard 120-volt outlet. Like the 3-hp model, the 1.75-hp saw is available with 30", 36", and 52" rip fences.

Having used contractor and hybrid saws, I know a 1.75-hp motor provides plenty of power for most furnituremaking operations, especially if you switch over to thin-kerf blades. The few instances that you might want a little more power are insignificant compared to the one time you might need a blade-stopping brake.

#846918  (basic model with 30" fence) $2,299
Tester:  Andrew Bondi


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