Best Speed Square Reviews: Which Brand Should You Choose in 2018?
Have you ever wished you had an all-purpose tool that makes your work so much easier? That one tool that you know is versatile enough to do anything you need, no matter what? Certainly, you may think this is a pipe dream, a wish that is unrealistic. But, you still yearn for the all-in-one piece of equipment that will make woodworking or roofing a joy to carry out. Actually, there is such a solution and carpenters and woodworkers the world over have discovered the versatility and efficiency that is possible, thanks to the best quality speed square they can put their hands on. Our speed square review is here to help you find the best one for your next project.
Before we plunge into the product reviews, you may wish to learn more, or have a refresher, about the speed square, what it is, and what it is used for.
Things to consider in choosing your Speed Square
Selecting your speed square may seem like quite a straightforward task but there are a few considerations for the best rated speed square on the market.
One of the first considerations, depending on what you will use your speed square for, is the material that it is made from. Some of the best speed square options are made to last and to withstand the rigors of daily use. The material options include aluminium, plastic or a special fabrication. Whatever material you finally choose, take the time to weigh the pros and cons of choosing a speed square made from one material or the other. Aluminium is highly recommended for its relative strength and durability.
For a handy tool that you will need to call upon more often than not, weight is a consideration. You may prefer your speed square to be lightweight so that it is easy to carry around. Bulkier speed squares may not be ideal for you, especially when you have to work with it on the roof. For other users, a heavier speed square may be alright for its heft and sturdiness.
You might also wish to consider how long you are likely to have the speed square for. If you are like most carpenters, you would want to have your best value speed square for a pretty long time. The material that your tool is made from may also contribute to its durability.
This is by no means the final consideration, but it is a necessary one to assure you that you are buying the right tool. The main thing about the speed square that is so attractive to users is its accuracy and precision in measuring angles and lengths on rafters, roof shingles, and any other wooden products you need to work with. Pinpoint accuracy and precision are crucial features of the best speed square.
How much you are willing to spend to acquire the best speed square is a consideration that should not be taken lightly. If you are not too concerned about cost, then you are more likely to want to look at the quality of the speed square you need for your project. For those who are on a budget, the choices may be limited, but there is still flexibility in choosing the best value speed square that can be purchased for the money. Let’s now see the top recommendations that our speed square review has uncovered:
The 5 Best Speed Square Reviews:
From the trusted name, Swanson comes the Swanson Tool S0101 seven-inch Speed Square Layout Tool. You can always rely on Swanson for the best quality speed square on the market. Your speed square is also supplied with a sixty-two-page booklet which guides you with reference diagrams, tables and crucial instructions for the building of stairs and roofs.
With the Swanson tool, you can expect accuracy and precision in any measurement you choose to make. This speed square is a mitre, framing, protractor, and tri square in one handy tool. Not only is this a pocket-sized tool that is easy to take around, it’s also a useful solution in measuring rafters for any cut you need to make. Using common hip and valley scales, this tool allows you to measure and make the correct cuts on rafters at the proper pitch value. You may also use the slot that is found on the scales to insert an adjustable locking pin whenever you need to do repeated cuts with any ¼ inch nut and bolt.
Another best rated speed square from Swanson is the Swanson Speed Square with Blue Book and Combination Square Kit, which is perfect for contractors or do-it-yourself alike. This kit includes a seven-inch Swanson Speed Square as well as a six-inch combination square, which is a favorite among professional carpenters.
To make working with this speed square easier, you are provided with a booklet that you can carry in your pockets. This booklet provides instructions and illustrative diagrams and tables to guide you on how to make stairs and roofs more effectively. This product is literally a good value for your money that you won't regret.
The Stanley 46-053 Premium Adjustable Square Tool is another versatile product for carpenters and others who love woodworking and roofing. Consider this one of the best quality speed square options you can choose. It features a 10 -3/4 base length and a ruler length of 6 -3/4. You may agree that this is one of the compelling features of this flexible and versatile tool. This speed square is also made to last, thanks to its high-performance aluminum material.
You can also read all its markings under different lighting conditions, which is possible with the yellow graduations on a black body. If you need to use this square for many other applications, you can do so using its valley and hip scales. One of the outstanding features of this best-rated speed square is its adjustable design that allows it to be used as a saw guide, a protractor, or a bevel. The Stanley 46-053 also comes with an arm you can adjust to suit whatever you need to do.
You may try the CH Hanson 03060 Pivot Square, which is designed with precision in mind. It features a positive machinated scale and lock, which improves its stability when used. This tool is designed to accurately measure any pitch, rise, or angle of roofs and anything you are working with. It comes with a pouch that you can keep it in, as well as a marking pencil and a guide that technically shows you how to carry out roof framing.
Let’s just say that the CH Hanson 03060 is hands down the best value speed square that is worth the money. Not only is it made beautifully, but it is also provided in a strong pouch. You may, however, be a little dissatisfied with the difficulty you may experience in setting the locking mechanism in certain positions. It is also a little too easy to loosen. By and large, the flaws reported are minor compared with the range of benefits you’ll experience in using this handy tool.
Your toolbox is not complete without the Maxtech 18140MX 4-in-1 Multi Square. This convenient tool features a strong, durable aluminum frame and an ABS housing that does not wear easily. An integrated V-groove is located at the bottom of the square to measure pipes and conduits. This is a very convenient feature in this best quality speed square. Maxtech also designs this square with a lock that can be easily operated by both left and right-handers. Not only is the multi-purpose square easy to use, but it is also quite versatile.
It features a tri-square, a protractor square, framing square, and miter square. This multi-square is designed to make it easier for you to guide it on any workpiece using its sliding and lockable straight edge. If you much rather a tool that is lightweight, you might find this multi-square a bit too hefty. Nonetheless, you’ll find this to be a handy tool that gets the job done.
Our speed square review is by no means exhaustive, but you get the idea. The best quality speed square options are top of the line tools made by reputable manufacturers that provide excellent customer satisfaction. You can agree that speed squares are precise and suitable for woodwork of all types. The best speed square you'll find is specially designed to make roof work much easier.
For others who need a little more help in deciding which of the many options available on the market to select, we have done the research and identified some of the top options you can consider. You know that one size does not fit all, so what is a perfect speed square for one carpenter may not necessarily be the most suitable for another.
One of the primary considerations in choosing a speed square is the project that it is intended for. Other considerations include material, weight, durability and maybe, cost. Once you have selected your speed square, enjoy the greater flexibility you’ll experience in using this all-in-one tool for your woodwork and carpentry projects.
What is a Speed Square?
Anyone who knows woodworking tools may have an idea of what a speed square is. For the rest who don’t, here’s what we are talking about.
The Speed Square, also known as triangle square, rafter angle square, and rafter square, is shaped like a triangle. That is the most common feature of speed squares and you can easily recognise it by this shape. The speed square is used by carpenters to mark out measurements before cutting the wood or rafter. This handy tool is also a combination of some common functions of the tri square, protractor, and framing square.
Do you think the best quality speed square is only good for marking 45-degree and 90-degree angles on wood? Actually, no. This tool can also be used for finding roof pitches and for guiding your circular saw whenever you cut wood. Any angle between zero and ninety degrees that you wish to measure and mark using this handy tool, you can do easily.
So, the speed square is a versatile tool that will allow you to measure the pitch of any roof (with the help of a level), mark perpendicular lines perfectly using the tri-square feature, measure and mark angles with the protractor, and measure cuts using the ruler. An interesting feature of the speed square is the scribe bar, which consists of a series of notches that appear at ¼ inch intervals. This bar allows you to accurately make trim lines along any board you wish to cut.
A word about measuring roof pitches:
The best rated speed square is quite valuable in quickly finding the pitch of any roof you are working on. The key is in the protractor feature that identifies common and uncommon roof pitches. So, the common roof pitch is measured using the guide that is located just above the protractor. Common roof pitches are indicated as the rise in inches over a twelve-inch run. You’ll see this indication for common rafters between 1 inch and 30 inches. Located above the common guide is the HIP-VAL guide that is for measuring the rise over a 12- inch run for hip and valley rafters.
Another really cool feature of speed squares is the diamond cut out that is found on the edge of the ruler. Many of the best speed square kits on the market carry this Swanson patented feature. The diamond cut out used to square a line that is drawn across the board to allow you to then make a 90-degree line perfectly from your line to the edge of the board. If you need to find the level of a surface but, for some reason, you do not have a bubble level, you can improvise with the speed square and a plumb-bob.