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Discussion Starter #1
the factors:
Cost
Shipping time
Specificity
Build quality
Shop time
Engineering
Looks

Etc...

I end up making most of mine.

You?
 

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I enjoy building shop made jigs but in a lot of cases it take me a long time to complete so I buy most of mine. I think build quality in most cases is better. Not near the plastic. :grin: I think just about always you can build a better jig at a cheaper than store bought. But I don't build mine out of scrap because i have no scrap. The so called scrap in my shop is just as important as other wood. If it's truly scrap it goes in the trash.
 

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I think that it would depend on the jig - one time use, multiple uses and, more important, whether it needs to be adjustable. I have both, and the onetime use jigs are made for function and not appearance.

I bought the Kreg jig for drilling cabinets for knobs and pulls, strictly because it could be adjusted for different centers, adjusted for different edge distances, etc. - made sense rather than taking the time to drill holes in pieces of plywood every time you needed to install hardware.

I have an old version of the Rockler Hinge Crafter which I've mainly used for smaller hinges, a Milescraft jig for larger (door-type) hinges but that always struck me as a little hokey in the way they said to line it up for location - I needed to hang some replacement doors, one of them directly on the studs as the original owner had done, and made the jig shown so I could screw it to the studs and rout the recess "in place". I probably overbuilt it, but it will work for me anytime I need to install 3-1/2" hinges.

The jig for routing slots was cobbled together when I was making my adjustable height workbench, but I've used it since then on a couple other projects, the length of slot is "adjustable" by putting a block in the opening to limit router travel. As you can see. it's pretty minimal, I would have made it look prettier if I'd realized now useful is was going to be.
 

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Oliver (Prof. Henry)
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Both. I do buy some jigs but often cobble something together quickly to to help with a task when I'm in the middle of a project.
 

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I'm with Don. More fun building my own, and most times a ready built is the inspiration with the needed tweaks to make it better. As Mike said long ago, it doesn't have to look pretty, it just has to work right.
 

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I would rather build my own too. Most are cobbled together with spare pieces of material (I won't use the word scraps) and that way I don't mind taking them apart and burning what is no longer usable and putting the usable pieces back with their friends. Most of the jigs I make are job specific anyway so they would sit around taking up space with the possibility that they would never be used again anyway.

The one exception is that I did buy the Incra Ibox jig last year. I had a home made finger joint jig but it required that I have exactly the same thickness stack on my dado set which was a PITA to set up and the Ibox adjusts to what size you have on so it was worth buying for that reason.
 

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There is no such thing as scrap wood. Only usable, and non-usable wood.

I'm not sure if I even knew you could buy jigs. Unless maybe what I have always thought of jigs are different from the rest of you - highly possible - after all, what they called a jig saw when I was growing up is now known as a scrollsaw, and a sabresaw is now called a jig saw. But a moot point anyway, because I make my own stuff; that way I get what I want, and not what someone else thinks I want. I'm not building high end furniture anyway, and if I were, I'd still make my own. Do piggy banks count as high end furniture? :laugh2:
 

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When I was working more, I purchased many items, but with more time, I make many items. And then there's the accuracy question. Some of my home made jigs just would NOT come out exactly right, so I purchased instead.
 

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I don't buy anything I can make. Sometimes I have bought because I found I couldn't make something or another and I have bought a few things. I do woodwork for fun and relaxation. Being retired I'm a bit careful ( read frugal or tight ) with my money. I do what I do cause I want to not because some else wants me to except for when Angel says she want me to want to then I say "yes, Honey, I'll get on it tomorrow.
 

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Not a great accomplishment here guys , but I was sure happy with the outcome after I built this jig . No way I could have done this as accurate with any other tool .
I didn't have any room for error , and the boxes went in perfect .



 

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I don't have scraps; I just have smaller and smaller projects. :grin:

Most of my projects require very specific fixtures and jigs that are not available off the shelf or commercially. And, since I have a Rube Goldberg sort of thinking process, I enjoy making the fixtures and jigs as much as I do the projects for which they are intended to assist.

I have a dozen I've made for building acoustic guitars; might post those one day but for now here's a few -

Tail block radius fixture, compound axis movement -


Fingerboard sanding block radius fixture -


Arm bevel binding fixture -


Here's a couple I posted not long ago but this is the sort of fixture I usually make.

Enjoy!
David
 

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Great video David and I did learn from it. I subscribed to your channel so I can learn more.
 

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Making accurate jigs often requires accurate jigs. There is often a bit of a bootstrap thing happening to get the basic stuff up and running. Once you have say an accurate cutting crosscut sled, making accurate parts for other jigs gets a lot easier.
Well said. I actually get more enjoyment from making jigs than from the project I'll use them on. My sons say that works out well for them. But you have to start out with dependable "jig making" jigs.
 

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I have both types, but since I am an inventor and also build prototypes for several other prolific inventors - I often find myself making the jigs & fixtures "in-house". In metal-working, we use a lot of "progressive dies" and sometimes I build jigs/fixtures with a similar thought process in-mind. It's not unusual for me to build a flat wooden base with four sides hinged onto it - designed to have only one of those hinged sides (templates) closing-down on a workpiece at any given time - for router work - this way multiple routers can each be setup to be compatible with differing hinged templates. I have the manufacturing of my concrete forms (which begin as injection-molded parts) done on giant 24'-0" square tables - fed on one corner, moved to the next operator/tool until offloaded onto pallets after going past two more corners and numerous employees. Everybody takes breaks at the same time - to not disrupt production.

It works for us!
Otis Guillebeau from Auburn, Georgia
 

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Oliver (Prof. Henry)
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Great video and well thought out jigs, David. Thanks for sharing.
 
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Oliver (Prof. Henry)
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Sometimes i wish I would just recognize that a jig would have helped, before it's too late and I've got a pile of scrap.
When in doubt, build a jig. :grin:

.
 
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