A Basic Layout Kit
Well-made furniture and cabinets start with accurate layout tools
Synopsis: A good try square, a ruler, and a marking knife are the fundamental layout tools that few serious woodworkers can get along without, writes Horst J. Meister. Add a marking gauge, a protractor, and a set of dividers and trammels and you’ll have a basic layout kit. Meister explains how he uses machinist’s layout tools, which are just as accurate and cost less money. He talks about how to find quality tools, how to evaluate what’s out there, and which sizes to consider. Use a knife, not a pencil, to mark your lines. He discusses marking and mortising gauges and bevel gauges and protractors. You’ll also learn what not to get and what to replace with something better.
I was 15 years old when I built my first cabinet. Shortly before my mother’s birthday, I overheard her tell my father that she would really like…