Results 1 to 14 of 14

Thread: Armor tool pocket hole system

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    74

    Armor tool pocket hole system

    I've just given my older Kreg jig to my son and was after another one and was originally looking at the Kreg K5 but watched a few videos on the Armor tool version including this one https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Feb3LZq_zTg and became very interested. Unlike the Kreg it has infinitely variable block height based on timber thickness as well as self adjusting collar position.
    Any owners out there with a comment on performance, reliability and longevity

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    McKean, PA
    Posts
    12,911
    Interesting system. The self adjust to board thickness feature is neat. Might be a useful jig if you put pocket screws in a variety of thicknesses on a regular basis.
    Lee Schierer
    Captain USNR(Ret)

    My advice, comments and suggestions are free, but it costs money to run the site. If you found something of value here please give a little something back by becoming a contributor! Please Contribute

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    74
    Quote Originally Posted by Lee Schierer View Post
    Might be a useful jig if you put pocket screws in a variety of thicknesses on a regular basis.
    ... and that's exactly what I do!

    The Kreg tool has a preset 3/4" (19mm) so if your using less like 16/18mm you run the risk of the drill breaking through and then by trial and error you have to set the stop collar on the drill bit manually. The Armor tool system does this automatically. The only concern is it has a lot of moving parts with the potential of breakdown if one of those parts fails. That's why I was keen to hear about longevity. It has been out a few years now and used on many youtube videos including April Wilkerson's. I guess if I'm the only one on here who buys one then I'll give a review

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    McKean, PA
    Posts
    12,911
    Quote Originally Posted by Johnny Barr View Post
    ... and that's exactly what I do!

    The only concern is it has a lot of moving parts with the potential of breakdown if one of those parts fails. That's why I was keen to hear about longevity.
    I'm always concerned about plastic parts particularly when they are supposed to move. Also sometimes jigs like to jump off the work bench and plastic tends to have a low survivability rating for that.
    Lee Schierer
    Captain USNR(Ret)

    My advice, comments and suggestions are free, but it costs money to run the site. If you found something of value here please give a little something back by becoming a contributor! Please Contribute

  5. #5
    You might read some reviews of people who have bought it. I looked into it sometime back As I remember people were happy with it but if I remember correctly there were some comments about parts breaking. Not knocking it just sugesting you read some buyer reviews.

    I have t.he K5 and am happy with it but if I had know about Porter Cables version I think i would have bought it I think it may be the best one out there but they don't seem to advertise it.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    74
    https://www.amazon.com.au/Armor-Auto...s%2C308&sr=8-1

    Ted, There are a small number of negatives and most are about missing the collar screw and a few about the drill bit breaking but I couldn't find one complaint about the actual unit and its performance. None of these negatives are deal beakers. 183 ratings and 4.4 stars out of 5 with 73% 5 stars , sounds pretty good to me. Just ordered!
    Last edited by Johnny Barr; 10-01-2020 at 6:00 PM.

  7. #7
    I think you will enjoy it post a follow up after you have had a chance to use it a while?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    74
    OK just arrived and I've had a chance to have a good play. The only negative is the drill bit isn't as good a quality as the Kreg but apart from that I couldn't fault it. The mechanism for auto adjusting the block and bit collar works as stated and the clamping is also easier/simpler than Kregs. I think its this clamping mechanism that is a deal breaker between this and the Kreg not just the auto adjusting. On the Kreg K5 you have to have the locking handle horizontal then press a knob while moving the locking section forward then while holding the locking section you then have to lift the handle until it makes 2 clicks. This can become painful if you are switching between different widths. On the Armor just pull and lock, couldn't be simpler.

    I tried some non standard widths eg 18mm instead of 19mm (3/4") and it worked perfectly and I tried 12mm instead of 12.7mm (1/2") and the drill actually broke the surface so I moved the collar around 0.5 to 0.7mm and it then worked. This trial and error process was only for stock close to 1/2", the other widths were all automatic. As for longevity and all the moving parts well only time will tell but reading the reviews its seems OK . The screw guide on the side of the block is for joining the same widths eg 3/4" to 3"4" but there's no mention of suggested screw lengths for joining 3/4" to say 1.5". I found a table a while ago when i had the Kreg with suggested screw lengths for joining different width timbers. The color coding is as someone else said too gimmicky. A 1.25" screw is still a 1.25" screw regardless of the color. The block shows the length of the screw as well as the color. I think that they think that this makes it easier but it doesn't really. I also think the Kreg screws are better quality.

    I highly recommend this over the Kreg but I would still buy the Kreg bit and screws for the perfect setup.
    Last edited by Johnny Barr; 10-05-2020 at 1:15 AM.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    SE PA - Central Bucks County
    Posts
    54,247
    Thanks for the update, Johnny. It sounds like a nice tool. I believe April Wilkerson has used it in her videos if I'm not mistaken. I have an older Kreg that serves me well, but if I ever need to replace, I'd consider this self-adjusting design for the flexibility.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    74
    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Becker View Post
    I believe April Wilkerson has used it in her videos .
    Yes she has, Jim. I mentioned her in post #3 above and she is a fan of this jig and other Armor tool products

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    River Falls WI
    Posts
    426
    The Porter Cable Pocket Jig has been discontinued. I picked one up last year on close out, after reading reviews. I still have not used it. I do have the Kreg K5 and K4, I started with the K2 kit. I picked up the K4 for the dust collection mainly, the K5 front handle ls great. I use the K4 now for my Kreg HD. I have dealt with slipping collars as I have a few holes in my bases. Now I have separate Drill bits for my common sizes set up. Overall, the K5 is a very good system, on any system the Kreg Screw Selector Wheel is a very worth while investment. Kreg Customer service is great too. When one of my HD bits broke, they sent a new one. They also sharpen their Bits for a small fee. Dan

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    74
    I didn't want this thread to end up being a popular vote on which is the best pocket hole system but more focused on the features, accuracy and reliability of the Armor tool but I knew that a comparison with the industry standard K5/K4 and others was inevitable. I'm keen to hear from other Armor tool pocket hole users and what they think. I'm not sure there are too many out there!

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    20,728
    It looks like it covers a lot of the features of the PC (sorry for the comparison) at a reduced price. There are plastics and then there are plastics so the pointing out of plastic parts is inconsequential to me. I have a "plastic" gear in the drive train on one of my machines. It serves as a safety for the drive train in the event of a catastrophic failure. I happened to look at it the other day when someone poo-poo'd the machine due to the "plastic" part. Looks like new and has been in use for early a decade. Wanna talk about how much plastic is under the hood of your car ;-) I think I have used the Anchor auto adjust clamps branded as Rocklers. They do the job well enough. Their auto adjust isn't as smooth as the Besseys but, the tension setting is more elegant. I don't think I would hesitate to go with it if I did that sort of work.
    Last edited by glenn bradley; 10-05-2020 at 9:14 PM.
    "The Danish government believes that if we train 5,000 designers, and produce
    one Hans Wegner, the money is very well spent." - Ole Gjerlov-Knudsen

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    74
    I think it was Armor tool who claim they were the first to come up with the auto adjust technology. It works well but occasionally I found that it randomly looses its pressure setting and you have to adjust it manually. Yes the PC is similar. BTW I made a pocket hole station. The K5 has those little storage containers which are very useful so I just made a few boxes to cover that. The 2 x 4s are perfectly level with the jig for longer pieces. The reason for the gap between them and the jig is you won't be able to get the drill bit out if you're too close. The dust adapter fits snugly into the dust collection port and that works brilliantly. There is no dust and so far I have drilled about 20 to 30 holes. I found the K5 dust port is a bit loose and often comes out. On the armor the port slides in rather than clip in so it is clearly stronger. Also note the Kreg R3 in the box. I bought this when it was on special when its price and a new drill bit and collar were almost the same. That's handy on large boards.

    Armor jig.jpg
    Last edited by Johnny Barr; 10-05-2020 at 10:24 PM.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •