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Thread: Finding the right dovetail square: Ordered a Vesper

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
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    Columbus, Ohio, USA
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    Finding the right dovetail square: Ordered a Vesper

    I have done lots of hand cut dovetails and I decided to step out of my comfort zone (Chris), and cut some through mortises. I am not done yet, but, they are roughly 2" by 1/2". I wanted to make sure that I was cutting through squarely so I went looking through my collection of stuff.

    It feels like I own lots of squares; but I know people (Steve) who have demonstrate that I do not know the meaning of "lots". That said, my narrowest blade is probably 3/4". None of these were working well because the blades were just too big.

    It was difficult for me to find something smaller. I went to a Rockler and a Woodcraft store, and neither had what I wanted. The best they had was a Starrett 14D Double Steel Square (https://www.amazon.com/Starrett-14D-.../dp/B000VDTDTU) with a single blade; the largest one shown at the Amazon link. I already own a Lee Valley 4" precision double square (http://www.leevalley.com/us/wood/pag...79&cat=1,42936), I really like it, but, it is just too wide for this.

    The Lee Valley small double square (http://www.leevalley.com/us/wood/pag...936,42941&ap=1) was a lead contender. It is well reviewed, and the price is right.

    Lee_Valley_Square_15n0501s03.jpg

    Although this would work for me, what I really wanted was to have both of those blades and then one more that did not have two different sizes. You know, like what Vesper tools sells

    https://www.vespertools.com.au/vespe...ouble-squares/

    vesper_tools_square_455451.jpg
    Someone pointed out on the forum here that you can also buy that from Highland woodworking (https://www.highlandwoodworking.com/...le-square.aspx).

    Some people that I respect greatly love that little square from Vesper tools. For example, Patrick Chase (https://www.highlandwoodworking.com/...le-square.aspx) and
    Derek Cohen (https://sawmillcreek.org/showthread....-Double-Square). I would probably have been happy with the Lee Valley version, but, I really wanted that third blade.

    Now I wait and see how long it takes to arrive.

  2. #2
    I have the Lee Valley and it works well for me. But if I didnt already own two 4" and one 6" small double square, Id have bought the Sterling or Vesper to get "full functionality". Both have great reputations.

    Edit (and off topic): But you can't have enough good squares. So I still may buy that 2" x 2" Bridge City triangle that LV just started selling for $23. And they have free shipping over $40 right now.

    Let us know how you like your Vesper!
    Fred
    Last edited by Frederick Skelly; 02-08-2019 at 7:04 PM.
    "All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing."
    - Sir Edmund Burke

  3. #3
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    For sure I will let y'all know how I like the square.

    The bridge city triangle looks interesting, and the price is right. The closest I have to that is the Woodpeckers DelVe Square
    https://www.woodpeck.com/delve-squar...nnwi5ubt92yx3g
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ogajfMexD1c

  4. #4
    Wow, that's a spendy square - $180 for the set. I went with the Sterling blade in a double square.

    Mike
    Go into the world and do well. But more importantly, go into the world and do good.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Henderson View Post
    Wow, that's a spendy square - $180 for the set. I went with the Sterling blade in a double square.

    Mike
    And if they had that third blade I would have done the same..... They don't do they? If so, I guess I spent more than I needed, but, I hear the Vesper is very nice.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew Pitonyak View Post
    And if they had that third blade I would have done the same..... They don't do they? If so, I guess I spent more than I needed, but, I hear the Vesper is very nice.
    It is definitely "spendy". But if it arrives, and it's exactly what you want, then it's worth it. I look carefully at significant purchases, and when I can afford it, I never regret getting the thing I wanted.
    "All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing."
    - Sir Edmund Burke

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
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    Perth, Australia
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    Hi Andrew

    You will love the little Vesper double square. All Chris' tools, and espcially this one, are jewel-like. He is such a perfectionist - not just in the quality of construction, such as its precision and accuracy, but also the way it should handle. Small details ... such as the knurled adjustment nut ... are a number of levels above the Starrett version I have.

    If any here are interested in photos and more description, go to the link Andrew provides above (the forum discussion after my name).

    Regards from Perth

    Derek

  8. #8
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    Now is definitely the time to buy from Oz due to the exchange rate.
    Chris

    Everything I like is either illegal, immoral or fattening

  9. #9
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    Chris; it also works the other way with the exchange rate. Now is not the time to buy from the USA if you reside in the au.

    Stewie;

  10. #10
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    I think I worked that out a few years ago Stewie, talk about the bleedin' obvious everyone in Oz has worked it out.
    Chris

    Everything I like is either illegal, immoral or fattening

  11. #11
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    I bought the Starrett diemakers square many years ago for work in the tool room. It is adjustable for checking clearance angles in dies.
    Not something you used every day, but nice to have when needed.
    I just got a starrett 236 on ebay for 29.00 and am hoping to use that for dovetails if it is square enough, and I can adjust the blade at slighter angles then 30,45 and 90 degrees.
    Enjoy your new tool Andrew. Vesper makes nice tools for sure.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frederick Skelly View Post
    It is definitely "spendy". But if it arrives, and it's exactly what you want, then it's worth it. I look carefully at significant purchases, and when I can afford it, I never regret getting the thing I wanted.
    +1 on this!

    As long as SWMBO says it is okay, what does it matter what anyone else says?

    jtk
    "A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty."
    - Sir Winston Churchill (1874-1965)

  13. #13
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    I have the Lee Valley double square. It is a good tool.

  14. #14
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    I’ll second third fourth or whatever it is Chirs’s tools are worth every penny as they are both functional and designed to the highest degree and built the same.

    Imop I’d pay ten times what he wants just to support someone still interested in a job well done.

    I’ve had a number of tools backordered for him for well over a year now and I’ll wait till the cows come home.

    To be hi est I often wonder how the heck the guy makes ends meet as how many of these tools can he really sell and they sure seem to take a while to produce so...

    I’m just happy to know I’m doing a tiny part to support so,done doing what makes them happy.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by michael langman View Post
    I bought the Starrett diemakers square many years ago for work in the tool room. It is adjustable for checking clearance angles in dies.
    Not something you used every day, but nice to have when needed.
    I just got a starrett 236 on ebay for 29.00 and am hoping to use that for dovetails if it is square enough, and I can adjust the blade at slighter angles then 30,45 and 90 degrees.
    Enjoy your new tool Andrew. Vesper makes nice tools for sure.
    I bought the same tool, as new, with the box (machinist/toolmakers take excellent of their tools). Cost was $40.00, purchased from the guy who puts out a "for sale" list of tools, the first Monday of each month, and was the subject of a thread here. Hint, his last name begins with a L, ends with a H and has three other letters in between, E, A, C.

    That tiny die-makers square is the equal of any out there.
    If the thunder don't get you, the lightning will.

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