Keith P. Tompkins Woodturning Studio
Designed to be the most accurate bowl measuring caliper in the world.
About the Tompkins Bowl Gauge
I wouldn't be able to complete many of my turnings without careful planning and the ability to take precise measurements. Unable to locate measuring tools accurate enough to meet my requirements, I began designing my own out of necessity. My bowl gauge is the result of refining and perfecting my original concept over time. The frame is molded of glass-filled polycarbonate, all moving parts are brass or stainless steel. The spherical measuring points won't scratch surfaces being measured, and help compensate for user error. The design of the gauge allows measuring across the foot of bowls as well as producing accurate measurements of wall thickness.
That device has saved me more money than any other thing I have ever bought. I use it religiously for six months or so, then start getting lazy After half a dozen bowls without it, I go through the bottom of one -- which is worth far more than the Gage't. I eat my humble pie, learn my lesson and take out the gage't and use it for another six months before having another lapse. If I could train myself to use it regularly, I would have paid for it five or six times just from my lapses. Heaven only knows how much more money it has saved me by using it regularly during my six-month sessions -- but it is a lot!
Shared in memory of my friend, and master woodturner, Bill Neddow.
The thing I like about the Gage'T is that you can easily slide the tool down the wall of the bowl and watch the scale to show the actual thickness of the wall at that point (no guessing or estimating), making the identification of the specific area that needs more work quite easy. I formerly used the wire loop, but never liked it very much - perhaps I am too much of a stickler for accurate measurement (scientist gene being expressed since about age 10) R.W.
The Tompkins gauge is injection molded from glass-filled polycarbonate, using state of the art equipment. Proudly made in the U.S.A.
Detail of the measuring pin, showing precise 1/16" increments.
My only complaint is the cost.......but, like most things of this nature, long after the price is forgotten, the usefulness is the only evaluation that really matters. Although I've only used the Gage-T for a short period of time, my requirements have evolved over decades, and it looks like this device is a better solution than calipers......that is, if accuracy is at a premium.
Available at these fine retail outlets:
Craft Supplies, USA
Hartville Tool Company
The Sanding Glove
Free shipping within the Continental U.S. Please contact me with foreign or overseas shipping costs!