2018 Wood Magazine INNOV8 AWARDS
We honor these eight new tools and accessories as the most innovative in the field of woodworking.
Super-compact 12-volt router
Although battery-powered routers have been around for years, they’ve all run on bulky 18-volt or larger battery packs. Bosch’s new compact router uses a single 12-volt pack to power the offset spindle and 1⁄4 " collet. It has a larger base than most trim routers, but weighs just over 2 pounds.
12-volt palm router
no. GKF12V-25N, $150 (bare tool)
Perfect slots are only a click away
Unlike traditional adjustable slot cutters that use shims to fine-tune slots to precisely fit a mating workpiece, Infinity’s Precision Twist bits do the job mechanically. Simply rotate the adjuster knob one “click” to adjust slot width .004". Each bit features a top and bottom cutter with an adjustment range up to 1⁄4 " and a bearing that limits the depth of cut to 1⁄2 ".
Precision Twist slot-cutting bits
1⁄8 –1⁄4 ", no. 61-512, $140; 1⁄4 –1⁄4 ", no. 61-513, $140;
2-pc. set, no. 00-512, $250
Infinity Cutting Tools
Fine-tune miters at any angle
A shop-made shooting board and hand plane work great to trim miters to a single precise angle. But the head of Lee Valley’s new shooting board locks at any angle, with detents at 0°, 18°, 22.5°, 25.7°, 30°, 36°, 45°, and 60°. The board comes with everything except the plane and an auxiliary wood fence that you provide. Your shooting plane rides on a UHMW track, with an adjustable rail to prevent the plane from pushing away from the workpiece. (Remove this rail to use a regular bench plane.) You can also buy just the fence/head and make your own shooting board.
Veritas adjustable shooting board
no. 05P54.90 (right hand) or 05P54.91 (left hand), $199;
fence alone, no. 05P54.85, $109
Clamping force gets more compact
Bessey’s new GearKlamps look and work similarly to traditional F-style clamps, but without the handle extending from the sliding jaw. Instead, the in-line handle rotates around the bar for easy access in tight spaces, and four gears (inset photo) transfer clamping force to the padded jaw. Bessey says these clamps can produce up to 450 pounds of clamping force.
6" (GK15) $16; 12" (GK30) $20; 18" (GK45) $23; and 24" (GK60) $25
Cutting tools now “talk” to the vacuum
Makita’s new Autostart Wireless System (AWS) uses Bluetooth technology to link a shop vacuum/dust extractor with likewise equipped cordless sliding mitersaws, rail-guided saw, and concrete rotary hammers. Simply sync the tool and vacuum, and then every time you activate the tool’s trigger, it automatically powers up the vac as well. These machines and the vacuum run on two 18-volt LXT battery packs, so you don’t need any electric cords.
Autostart Wireless System
Dust extractor, no. XCV08Z, $460; 10" sliding compound mitersaw, no. XSL04ZU, $515 (bare tool); 61⁄2 " plunge-cut saw, no. XPS02ZU, $360 (bare tool)
Powermatic thinks outside the box for air cleaner
The innovation here comes from the pleated electrostatic filter, which the company claims traps dust as fine as .1 micron—an incredible accomplishment compared to other air-filtration systems that claim 1-micron filtration. The fan runs at a whisper-quiet level, so you’ll be more likely to leave it running all the time. The cover screen and filter can both be removed and cleaned when needed.
Micro-Dust air-filtration system
no. PM1250, $700
Muffler quiets the ’clone
Noise remains the biggest objection to keeping a dust collector running all the time you’re in the shop. Oneida’s new stacking sound filter installs in-line with the cartridge filter of many of its cyclone collectors, reducing the noise output by 6–7 decibels, according to Oneida, without adding to the machine’s footprint.
Stacking sound filter
13" diameter, no. BSS131400, $199;
18" diameter, no. BSS181600, $229
Oneida Air Systems
Get zero-measure accuracy without the cost of a rail-mount saw
Unless you own a rail-guided plunge saw, you typically have to factor in the offset measurement between the blade and the edge of the circ saw’s base when guiding it with a straightedge. With the cordless ExacTrack circular saw, you simply clamp your straightedge on the cutline, rest the base’s red portion on the straightedge, press the blade against the edge, and cut precisely on the mark. The base works with any straightedge up to 3⁄4" thick.
ExacTrack 20-volt 61⁄2 " circular saw
bare tool, no. WX530L.9, $100;
with one 2.0 Ah battery and charger, no. WX530L, $120