Here at ToolGuyd, we love mini layout squares, and Lee Valley has a new Veritas 1-1/2″ “pocket layout square” that looks like it could be useful.
If you want a small square for woodworking tasks, there’s also the Woodpeckers Delve square, and Milwaukee’s trim square. Those two squares are different sizes and with different features, and the same is going to be true for this Veritas square.
The Veritas pocket layout square measures just 1-1/2″ long and wide. Its base is offset 1/8″ on one side, and 1/4″ on the other.
It has 1/16″ markings on the side, and angle graduations in 10° intervals, although Lee Valley cautions that the protractor functionality won’t be as accurate as on standard squares.
Lee Valley says:
Keep it in your pocket and use it for joint layout of small parts or in cramped areas of a project that require simple cut-off or miter squares.
The square is made from extruded aluminum with black anodizing and laser-etched markings. It’s made in Canada.
If this piques your interest, you might also be interested in reading about Lee Valley’s Veritas layout blocks.
This is a really small square, teeny tiny even.
It does look like it’ll come in handy for smaller joinery layout work, or working with smaller pieces of wood where standard squares are just way too large.
Lee Valley sells a couple of miniature-sized hand tools, but this doesn’t seem to be a part of that lineup – it really just looks like an attempt to suit woodworkers who work more with smaller-sized pieces of wood.
I do wonder if Lee Valley and Veritas would or should have come out with a larger square, but maybe they’re testing the waters with this one.
Woodpeckers’ Delve square is ~3-3/4″ long (side), and Milwaukee’s trim square is 4-1/2″. The Delve square is machined and priced at $50 (soon to be $60), and Milwaukee’s square is from extruded aluminum and priced at $10. Both those squares are made in the USA, while the Veritas is made in Canada.
I wonder if maybe 2-1/2″ would be a more usable length.
Actually, I could appreciate the smaller size after all, which might serve double-duty in machine setup tasks, with router bits or other adjustable-depth cutters and accessories.
I’ll very likely end up buying one, to see just how useful it is. At just under $10, it’s priced high enough to where I wouldn’t buy one for personal use without knowing if or how I’d use it, but low enough where I can justify it as a ToolGuyd editorial expense.
I love exploring tools like this. I predict that I’ll end up using it quite a bit, although I will probably look to avoid losing it in a pocket.
As for the price, I’m thinking “$10 for that little piece of aluminum?!,” but also “other companies would machine a similar tool and charge 4X as much.”
I have a couple of Lee Valley/Veritas tools, and some of their extruded aluminum products, and they’re all decent. Such tools are economically priced, at least compared to what other brands might charge for similar functionality, since the main shape is extruded instead of being machined. That’s never been a let-down for me.
It will be interesting to see how useful the 1-1/2″ size will prove to be.