Combination Gauges combine a single pin marking gauge, with an adjustable dual-pin mortise gauge. The steel pins, crowned beam, and solid locking fence of Marples Sheffield-made combo-gauges, lend themselves to scribing the thin, precise lines necessary for fine joinery. Joseph Marples is one of the few remaining tool makers in Sheffield, and their no-nonsense gauges deliver the solid feel and value that made Sheffield famous.
Combo-Gauges mark accurately, but without need for numerical measurement. As an example, our preferred method for marking out a mortises is to set the width of the gauge using the following formula: mortise chisel width + a-lil'bit of wiggle room to pare the sides after wasting. Keep the gauge at the same setting while laying out the tenon, and the layout will match identically without ever needing to "measure". We find it useful to own more that one gauge, so they can be set, and left alone until layout is complete.
Joseph Marples is a family owned business, currently run by Joseph (Tony) Marples. Tony is the 6th generation Joseph to have run the business. Tools for Working Wood has carried Marples measuring and layout tools for years, and the value they provide for the price, make them a popular choice for layout tools. We carry three styles of Marples Combination Gauge:
Plated Black Walnut with screw adjust
Nice quality gauge with solid brass adjustment and plated fence. The screw adjustment for the second pin handy because it prevents the pin from moving while setting the fence. Stem Measures: 6" (7 1/2" including screw adjust) x 3/4" x 3/4" , Fence Measures: 2 1/2" W x 2 1/8" H x 1" .
We carry two Beech Slide adjustable gauges
, both with plastic locking screws. They both have sliding adjustment, but the fancier one has a brass plated fence. The plated beech gauge is a nice second gauge to the rosewood model. If you (like us) leave your gauges set throughout a project, the difference in color between the rosewood and the beech make it obvious at a glance which gauge is which. Stem Measures: 7 1/2" L x 3/4" x 3/4" , Fence Measures: 2 1/8" W x 2" H x 1".
Joseph Marples Combo-Gauges are made in Sheffield England - just as they have been since 1840.
Note: Marples is no longer exporting Rosewood gauges because of the scarcity of Rosewood and it's appearance on the CITES list of endangered species.