Starrett square issue


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Hi all. I'm making the two-sheet bookcase project from the Guild, and my cuts weren't cutting out square. I check my Starrett 12" combo square, and it doesn't seem to be square any more. Is it fixable or do I now have an expensive paper weight?

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The only other square I have is a 4" engineer square, which can't check 12". I tested on a few surfaces doing the old 'draw a line, flip the square, draw another line, see if they match', and it always thickened towards the end. I tested the 4" square at the same time and it didn't, but again, it's only 4" (inset 'that's what she said' joke here). 

There is a cabinet shop I can drop into next week and ask to check against their squares, which is what I will do before any work will get done on it. 

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2 hours ago, Doomwolf said:

Hi all. I'm making the two-sheet bookcase project from the Guild, and my cuts weren't cutting out square. I check my Starrett 12" combo square, and it doesn't seem to be square any more. Is it fixable or do I now have an expensive paper weight?

http://www.finewoodworking.com/2016/12/02/truing-combination-square

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1 hour ago, Doomwolf said:

The only other square I have is a 4" engineer square, which can't check 12". I tested on a few surfaces doing the old 'draw a line, flip the square, draw another line, see if they match', and it always thickened towards the end. I tested the 4" square at the same time and it didn't, but again, it's only 4" (inset 'that's what she said' joke here). 

There is a cabinet shop I can drop into next week and ask to check against their squares, which is what I will do before any work will get done on it. 

Have you heard of the five cut method? It might be all you need to proceed with your build. Until the unsquare square conundrum is solved.

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If I recall correctly, you take a piece of ply that is 12” or so on each side. Number the 4 sides and set your fence or stop block on your sled to 11”. Then put side #1 against your fence and rip it. Rotate your board clockwise until you have cut all 4 sides. Now move your fence in 1” and rip It again with side #1 against your fence and see if the off cut is exactly the same width on each end. If not, your fence is off by that amount. It’s been a while but I believe that’s the way it goes. 

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Simple. Take a pic of flat lumber. Plywood is good at least  12" wide and12 long. Set your square on the middle of a straight edge. Strike a line. Now flip the square on the same edge. If the square is true and the edge is true the square will match the scribed previous line. If the square is off so will the line not match the square.

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I was actually using a circular saw and an edge guide, as per the Guild build/I don't own a table saw/I couldn't get one down the stairs unless I took the top off and carried it separately (or got a contractor saw, but I doubt that would work for sheet goods). 

Having slept on the matter, the issue probably me/layout and not the square, but I'm going to drop by the local cabinet shop and test it against Greg's Starrett to be sure before I do anything else. I'm already out most nights this week anyway, so I'm not really losing much shop time. 

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What no table saw? I was way off on this one. I can't imagine how your using a Starret combo square with a sidewinder and a straight edge. Not saying it can't be done.  I use a carpenters square and woodpeckers square with a my skill saw and straight edge.

Mostly because the parts are coming out of plywood sheets so everything is bigger.

Good luck

Aj

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As I said already it is so easy to test any square. Take a piece to plywood 12" wide or wider. Put your square on it and strike a line. From that exact place simply roll the square 180 degrees from the same edge. If the line matches up and if the edge is straight you have a good square. Because it is starrett, I'd bet on the square. This test takes seconds once you have the right piece of lumber.

Framing squares frequently are off. One day I walked into home depot, with lumber on my cart, I walked by the squares. I took their entire inventory of their framing squares for a test and the all failed the test. I have a 24" Starrett try square. It is perfect. On order is a 48" T square...Starett...The T square will be given the accuracy test first chance.

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