# The Always Set Edge Marking Gauge

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## Introduction: The Always Set Edge Marking Gauge

I don't know about you, but I hate having to constantly change the settings on my marking gauges. Heck, I hate changing my mind, the channel, and my clothes, but I do it because my Momma taught me manners (um ... what?).

I've been building some stools and jigs and a recuring theme is the need to measure 3/4" in from the edge of a board. No problem right? I mean I have a 6" combination square. Then I change the setting for another measurement only to need 3/4" a few beers, I mean minutes later.

Sure ... I could go to the big box store down the street and buy a case of combination squares, but if you saw my herb garden build, you know my attention span thwarted me from planting a money tree. This problem calls for some scrap wood and a few minutes of my time.

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## Step 1: Collect the Parts

I'm predominantly dealing with 3/4" stock, be it plywood or solid wood like poplar or oak from the box store down the street. Due to this fact, I want a little more room so it doesn't bind up and annoy me even more.

On my scrap/off cut shelf, I found a 1 1/2" lamination (2 layers of 3/4" ply from a sled fence) and some hardboard .. weird right?

## Step 2: Rip the Parts

I first ripped the plywood lamination to 7/16" with the veener facing up. This will be the inside width of the gauge. I then rotated it 90 degrees and ripped it to 1" for easy measurements and comfortable size (hey now).

The hardboard strips were ripped to 2" and 2 1/4" respectively. These aren't final widths, I leave everything long and trim to finish measurements whenever possible.

Glue a strip of hardboard to each side of the plywood. Be mindful of the plywood orientation. We want the smooth veener side facing up from in between the hardboard sandwich. I used glue, pin nails, and spring clamps. I also used my table saw top to keep it all flush during assembly.

## Step 3: Trim to Final Widths

My "bottom" is flush (don't be fresh) and I know the "depth of my plywood is 1". I want my gauge to be 3/4" on one side and 1" on the other side. So, I trim my sides down to 1 3/4" and 2" respectively. To be honest, I snuck up on the first side and checked it on scrap wood to make sure everything was working out, which it was/did/is/will forever!.

Once ripped to width, I trimmed the length on the miter saw. This left my gauge at a little over 14", so I turned it into two gauges! It's just like TV where they give you something free to make it seem like a better value.

## Step 4: Ready to Layout Lines

I now have a 12" gauge and a 2" gauge, which are fast and I never have to adjust. Obviously, you can customize the width and length to meet your needs.

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## 4 Discussions

Great idea! Sounds like your shop is like mine. Final step should be paint it bright color so you can find it next time.

Good call! My tape measures are neon green and I still lose the darn things.

Great idea. Thanks for sharing.

Now that's a pretty neat idea! I work with a lot of 3/4" stock and do a fair amount of dado cuts on the ends of a panel.
I've got some lexan from another project... I think I'll make a couple of these with different measurements.
Ya might want to post this over on woodworkingtalk.com under the jigs or hand tools forums. Great crew over there..