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Thread: Harvey COMPASS RG-1/RG-2 Universal Roller Guides Question

  1. #1
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    Harvey COMPASS RG-1/RG-2 Universal Roller Guides Question

    All -

    Has anyone seen or used the Harvey COMPASS RG-1/RG-2 Universal roller guides.

    They look solid and would be a pretty useful addition to my shop, but the price seems way too high.

    I'd love to hear any feedback.

    Thanks.
    ===========

    James Cheever
    Ga Tech NROTC - 1978
    Run Silent, Run Deep
    Commander, USN (Retired)

  2. #2
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    I'd be interested as well. They seem interesting, but for the same price you can get the JessEm guides. The Harvey guides would have the advantage of working on multiple machines, at the expense of potentially not being as effective (losing the downwards and maybe the inward pressure).

  3. #3
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    Wow, those are huge.

  4. #4
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?app=desktop&v=xhEClb4utL0

    I saw these on a video and tried to look them up and saw this thread come up on a Google search. Surprised not more comments. Yes, expensive, especially for a company that makes Shapers for under 3k LOL. Seems like a nice option for those with router tables and miter slots. I think it would be nice if they make a version that uses mag switches so they would not be limited to a certain distance from the miter slot. Then they could be used with jointers and other machinery more easily. Moreover, for those with shapers, one way wood is secured when a feeder is not used is the Aigner products that have wheels, but unlike with this product, you can't adjust the pressure. Too bad it is not made so it can attach to the Aigner pressure module. Seems like with that and mag options, there would be a lot of uses to justify the cost.

  5. #5
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    I have one I bought a couple of months ago and really like it. For thin rips I like how it is more smooth it is. I recently ripped 1/16" strips for edge banding shelves and it worked great. I've actually used it with my magswitchs just fine. I just removed the miter bar and used a couple magswitch blocks on the back side. I am going to design some sort of jig for it that will work better with magswitch magnets.

  6. #6
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    These are actually on my future list of tools (once higher priority items are accomplished). Both these and the Jessem Clear-Cut Stock Guides seem useful. The Jessem are great for holding material down on router table type operations. The Harvey is for holding material "against the fence". Both are two different requirements and both could be useful in some situations. The Harvey item are definitely expensive, but they are extremely well made and the roller bearings will have less movement resistance than feather-boards (which are a friction based hold-down). The wheels are large at 2", which means you can have one wheel for infeed side of the router bit and the second wheel for the outfeed side - which would hold the material against the fence all the way through the router bit. It is also, likely, less dangerous than a friction based hold down like feather-boards and would require less pressure to push the material through.

  7. #7
    https://www.harveywoodworking.com/pr...l-roller-guide

    how would you add the mag switches exactly? For sure you would add a block of wood 3/4 thick under the jig, then drill 40mm holes to insert the mag switches, but that would raise the rollers up 3/4 inch where you may want it lower.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joel Gelman View Post
    https://www.harveywoodworking.com/pr...l-roller-guide

    how would you add the mag switches exactly? For sure you would add a block of wood 3/4 thick under the jig, then drill 40mm holes to insert the mag switches, but that would raise the rollers up 3/4 inch where you may want it lower.
    There is considerable room on the sides. I have the RG-1. No need for anything below the device. Actually Magswitch has square magnets with threaded sides. I’m considering just drilling the sides of the Compas so I can add the magnets as needed. Another option is to have a small strip of BB and attach two Magswitch square 165s to the BB and use the hole on the side and a threaded knob to pull the magnets to the sides. Another idea is to CNC a pocket for it to sit in and a couple Magswitch MagJig 150s on the sides. There are serval ideas I have, just haven’t had time yet as I’m busy with other things I’m building/designing.

    Really though, for a lot of the handy people on this forum, adding Magswitches shouldn't be that difficult.

    Presently though it works fine on my bandsaw, tablesaw and router table, all of which have a miter slot and the Compass has quite a bit of movement in/out.
    Last edited by Michael Burnside; 02-08-2023 at 3:36 PM.

  9. #9
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    I have the RG-2 that I picked up during a promotion.

    Its held in place via a T-slot miter slot. I dont have that on the bandsaw nor on my router table, so I put some cheapie expansion slot wedges on it - holds fine.

    What I like the most is that you dial in the amount of squeeze you want. And can dial it up, or back, to get as much force as you want. Very smooth.

  10. #10
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    Magswitch makes a much larger variety of things for metal fabrication than I've seen for woodworking. All sorts of strengths too. They have some that are just flat square on all sides. It might be worth looking at those. I have several kinds for metal work that I've never seen for woodworking.

    I bought the first finger jig I ever saw, and I'm thinking it is a Rigid, but has the same type activation knob that I later saw just sold as Magswitch. I'm thinking it was in 2011 or 12 when I bought that one, and it's been used and enjoyed for hundreds of uses since then.

    Here's one that I use for metal fabrication. They're great timesavers for welding. I think the two Magswitchs in this are 600 lb. ones, and have threaded holes in the top of them to be used in different things. They make the same things with a number of different attachment forces. There is no difference in setting the stronger ones to the weaker ones. They are much easier to set right where you want than anything that clamps in a T-slot.

    I really like the looks of the design of these Harvey RG's.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by Tom M King; 02-08-2023 at 7:16 PM.

  11. #11
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    If you’re interested in Harvey products, get on their mailing list. Every month or six weeks they send me an offer with a big discount from their standard price.

  12. #12
    I use a lot of the MagJigs. With a 40mm Forstner bit and 3/4 inch material, I can secure 1 or more MagJigs. I use them with custom featherboards, and to hang toois on the sides of machines (I think a wonderful way to store tools related to the particular machine). I even mag switched my table saw outfeed table. no drilling. What I like is that when you have a metal surface (which you can have with certain router tables, you can turn a couple of knobs and it stays put. True not as secure as a bolt or a positive stop, but pretty good. The ratings are for resistance to pulling apart rather than sliding. Best example I can think of is the jointer. No slot there, but nice to be able to push wood up against the fence on both sides to keep it square especially with taller boards.

  13. #13
    Looks really well made and sure it works well. Piece of scrap will do the same.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Warren Lake View Post
    Looks really well made and sure it works well. Piece of scrap will do the same.
    Respectfully I disagree. From experience, consistency, smoothness of feed and strength of work holding are not the “same”.

  15. #15
    Thats okay, not my money and poster seems to care about money.

    Feather boards work fine and did for all in the trade I know. Even if the latest gizmos existed back then they would spend the money on machines. You couldn't tell the difference between a piece of wood machined with those or a feather board. Comes down to the operator and how he feeds material. Its well made and well thought out and adjustable. Glad to see it posted to be aware of it, same time fine with what ive always used.

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