Joinery - Marking with a Gauge
To make a small square, a piece of an old cigar box will answer the purpose admirably. The amateur will take a thin piece of wood about inch or inch thick, 2 inches long and i inch wide, plane the sides smooth, marking one side for the “face,” then plane the edges straight, and draw a pencil line across the middle, being one edge which has been planed straight; next, in order to obtain a right angle, if half a sheet of notepaper lx taken, and carefully folded so that the two corners exactly match, a very near approach to a right angle will be obtained at the corner where the crease meets the two edges which are folded together; this is laid upon the piece of wood with the angle resting upon the line. The lines are then carefully drawn with a fine pencil resting against the folded paper; the wood is next sawn nearly down, and the wood cut away with the chisel nearly to the pencil lines; then, with a very sharp chisel, the wood is cut very carefully, upon the pencil lines, tested with the paper square, and corrected where necessary. The edge of the square need not be more than inch thick, therefore the wood is “chamfered” off where it is shown shaded in the sketch.
Having finished planing one side and one edge of the board, he will mark them with his pencil, so that, when the other side and e1ge have been planed, he may know which were the first true faces from which the remainder is to be marked out. The next thing is to plane the board to the thickness which had been decided upon, namely, inch; in order to do this, he must mark the thickness upon the edges of the board, for which operation he will require a gauge; but, as he does not possess this tool, lie must make one, or rather, he must make something that will answer his purpose, because he has not tools with which to make a nicely-finished gauge. He will take a piece of wood about 4 inches long, 2 inches wide and inch thick, plane one edge straight, and nail upon it another piece of wood about g inches long, 1 inches wide and inch thick, in such manner that 7 inches of the thin piece (the blade) projects beyond the straightened edge of the short, thick piece (the stock) something in the form of a T square, such as is used for making drawings upon a drawing-board; this will serve his purpose for a gauge.
He will then mark the blade the exact distance, 1 inch, from edge of the stock, and knock in a tack just so far as to inch of the point to project below the under side of the blade; then, by placing the board upon its edge in the vice, keeping the stock of the gauge firmly pressed against faced side of his board, he will gently push his gauge along be edge of the board, in such manner that the point of the marks a line. This he will repeat until the line is deepened the whole extent of the projecting point of the tack. He will then run the finely-sharpened point of a pencil down this me, in order to make it more plainly visible. He will then do this operation upon the other edge of his board. These lines having been drawn, he will place his board, face down, upon the bench, and plane away the surplus wood, beginning at the edges, and carefully working down to the lines; then, using his straight-edge when he planes the middle of the board, to ensure against planing it too thin in the middle. So soon as this is done, he will plane the second edge of the board straight and square; after which he will proceed to mark out, and cut to shape, the sides and ends of the box, and generally to finish off the work for the purpose he requires.