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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Some time ago, I started a thread on little items that do a big job in woodworking. Today, I'd like to nominate these beauties
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Precision brass setup bars. This is an elaborate set going up to 3/4 inches in 16ths of an inch. They are perfect for setting a saw blade or router bit a precise distance from the fence, our out from the fence. You can use just one, or stack them.

If you decide to make drawers with a simple routed housed rabbet joint. Pix below. To do this you cut a groove in the end of one, and a rabbet in the end of the joining piece. The trick is getting the dado and rabbet to line up and be exactly the same width. That's where the bars come in. If using half inch stock for the back side of the drawer and wider on the sides, then using a quarter inch bar will get you right on. If using a table say with one of those precise 1/4 --- 3/8 ths stacking blades, you can turn out a workable drawer in minutes. Glued in place, this is a mighty strong joint. Note that the "front" in this drawing can be any thickness. And you can cut the dado anywhere so long as the dado is the same distance from the end on both drawer pieces. Otherwise it won't square up.
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Anyone else want to add an odd tool or accessory that is often overlooked?
 

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That's a good set. Tom. Mine only have 6 bars...

Bob and Rick swore by them...
 
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Frank
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Tom,

I have a different set of blocks, but I use them all the time. Use them to set height both routers and table saw. Also use to set distance from bay to fence. Have looked at the set you have, but never have pulled the trigger to purchase.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Anyone else have incidental tools or accessories they really appreciate? That's what I meant to happen when posting this string starter. I've noticed that we're not posting a lot of really basic stuff on the Forum lately.

For example. a block plane. I went for years without one. Then I got one of these. A little tune up and sharpening, and I find myself using it all the time. Easing edges, fitting doors, and on and on. I keep it out all the time because it's so handy.
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Go ahead, post an accessory or "minor" tool you really appreciate.
 

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Oliver (Prof. Henry)
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I’m amazed at how often I find myself reaching for my set of setup bars. My iGuaging set ranges from 1/16th to 3/4” plus a 1” x 2” x 3” block. The sizes are in 1/32” increments. Definitely a hero tool. But, I also use some shop-made pieces made from hardwood. I sliced them from 3/4” stock in widths of 1/8”, 1/4”, 3/8”, 1/2”, and 3/4”. Each one is 12” long. They aren’t precision, but they give me a fairly accurate quick-and-dirty setup which is good enough for a lot of my projects.
 

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Sr. mechanical engineer (HAVC / R)
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@DesertRatTom

I have brass setup bars and also some made out of mahogany. Mahogany ones are done in steps for setting up the RAS. also some were cut check height certain router bits to put them back in exactly same way each time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I’m amazed at how often I find myself reaching for my set of setup bars. My iGuaging set ranges from 1/16th to 3/4” plus a 1” x 2” x 3” block. The sizes are in 1/32” increments. Definitely a hero tool. But, I also use some shop-made pieces made from hardwood. I sliced them from 3/4” stock in widths of 1/8”, 1/4”, 3/8”, 1/2”, and 3/4”. Each one is 12” long. They aren’t precision, but they give me a fairly accurate quick-and-dirty setup which is good enough for a lot of my projects.
Hi Oliver. Haven't seen you on here for a long time. I hope you will repost some of you atomatons and toys. I know there are thousands of new members who have never seen them.
 

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I always like to trade....always like to sell
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Interesting to see this because just earlier today I was looking for some setup bars to replace my set that I cannot figure out where they are after searching all corners and nooks and crannies of my shop. Looking at some made aluminum by Kreg
 

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I’m amazed at how often I find myself reaching for my set of setup bars. My iGuaging set ranges from 1/16th to 3/4” plus a 1” x 2” x 3” block. The sizes are in 1/32” increments. Definitely a hero tool. But, I also use some shop-made pieces made from hardwood. I sliced them from 3/4” stock in widths of 1/8”, 1/4”, 3/8”, 1/2”, and 3/4”. Each one is 12” long. They aren’t precision, but they give me a fairly accurate quick-and-dirty setup which is good enough for a lot of my projects.
I have the iGuaging set also and like them because of the 1/32" increment. I also have the Infinity set because I had an application in which the iGuaging set was not quite long enough. The Infinity set is 1" longer but they do not have 1/32" increments. I use them regularly.
 

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I have several sets of brass bars, including some original Oak Park (Router Workshop; Bob and Rick).I also have the Lee Valley/Veritas setup bar sets in both Imperial and Metric. Not only are they good as set up bars, they are great for teaching fractions!
 

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