Full Chisel Blog

September 2, 2009

Mariner’s Compasses

Or dividers if you prefer is available once again.  Thanks to Lee Valley these dividers or compasses are now available at what I consider a very reasonable price.  As of this date they are listed for $24.95 which includes a nice hardwood box with brass hinges and friction catch and a fouled anchor in brass ‘inlaid’ into the top.

It came wrapped in paper and in a cardboard box.  I would have paid the price without any of the excess packaging.  I will probably use the box for something else as this tool will be in constant use.  I intend to use it for all types of layout as well as transferring measurements and to mark turnings.  Nice steel points that are tapered and touch when completely closed.

I am always happy when a decent reproduction tool becomes available and at a decent price.  When I first saw these I of course made a pair out of wood.  I find the wooden version is handy to take measurements off the screen and for scaling.  The brass pair goes to the shop this morning.

The fish glue and compasses arrived on my doorstep and looked like it had spent a couple of weeks in the weather.  The cardboard box was all wrinkled, there was a clump of mud on the bottom and the labels were faded.  The contents of the box were in perfect condition.

I used the compasses to scribe some repair veneer on the bureau I am restoring.  I cleaned and squared up the edge of the veneer but did not straighten out the edge.  I held a piece of veneer (supported by a ruler) next to the edge and set the gap on the compasses to the widest part of the lacuna.  I then carefully scribed the new veneer and then trimmed it with some scissors.  It works so well I continued some curved repairs on other parts of the bureau.  The scribe line is very fine, but held in the right light I got the pieces to fit good enough and glued them in place with liquid hide glue.


1 Comment »

  1. Thanks, Stephen. I spend a lot of time dreaming on the Lee Valley website but these calipers went under my radar, mostly because they’re listed under the Gardening section as “Camping and Hiking” accessories. I bet they’d sell more of them if they’d list them in the woodworking section 🙂

    Cheers — Larry

    Comment by Larry Marshall — September 2, 2009 @ 8:13 pm

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