Rated 4.3 out of 5Â by 18
Rated 3.0 out of 5.0Â by joelav22 Nowhere near professional, but It's actually square
I do a lot of woodworking, and mostly with handtools. That means I lay out my cuts with a combination square and a knife rather than a fence on a powered saw. It's absolutely critical that the combination square be accurate.
I have a few very expensive squares that I use often, but I wanted an inexpensive one that I won't be mad if it falls of the bench or gets a little glue on it.
This is where the empire square comes in.
Calling it professional is a bit of a stretch. My starrett squares are what I would call professional. The Steel on the blade (ruler) is not hardened. This was very evident the first time I ran my marking knife across the edge.
Rather than ductile stress relieved cast iron, this is mostly plastic and sintered steel/pot metal. It's very light and you can get it to deflect with moderate pressure
The locking knob is plastic; not brass or steel like some of the others - including my more expensive Empire combination square.
However what really matters here is if the blade is actually square to the base. I was not expecting it to be even close, but it's dead on. As you can see in the attached pic, I vrified it with a recently certified Starrett double square. No daylight at all and could not fit any size feeler between the 2 squares.
So if you are really looking for professional quality, this title is a bit misleading. Even the packaging alluded to this being on the lower end of the spectrum.
However at this price, the level of accuracy is fantastic. It's perfect for occasional use, or "high risk" situations where you need accuracy, but will likely cause some damage to the square.
I would buy another, in fact I may buy 2
October 21, 2014
Rated 4.0 out of 5.0Â by Benniman Good basic combo square
Good for occasional use, around the house, etc. Pieces seem to fit together well, not a lot of play. Inch markings are deep and in different increments.
November 5, 2014
Rated 5.0 out of 5.0Â by Hurwizzle Exactly what I needed
The Empire 12" combination square is a great product: the deep rule marks on the blade are easy to read and will withstand a lot of wear and tear, the leveling vial is easy to read, the drawbolt holds the blade firmly in place, the blade slides easily through the blade guide, and the handle allows for easy 45Â° and 90Â° angle markings.
The blade is double-marked on both sides in inches (broken into 1/8", 1/16", and 1/32" subdivisions, no metrics) so it's easy to use the square whether you're right-handed or left-handed.
The packaging shows three levels of product on it: "Good, Better, Pro," and the square I got is marked as "Better;" therefore, I'm not sure why the product description on here shows it as "professional." On the other hand, the liquid in the leveling tube is yellow, not blue, which lines up with the professional description (versus the blue liquid used in the "normal" square.
Not that it necessarily affects the effectiveness of the square, but I really appreciate that this product is made in my home state of Wisconsin. Very cool.
TL;DR: This is a great square, especially for the price!
July 31, 2014
Rated 4.0 out of 5.0Â by GaryWasher Good basic square
First of all, I don't know why this is described as a "Professional" tool when the packaging indicates otherwise ("Better" out of "Good-Better-Pro"). I suppose anything can be professional if the user is paid for the work, so it's just semantics.
I like this tool. It has the usual features of a small low-priced combination square. The blade is strong, but not unbend-able, so be somewhat careful with it. The aluminum head is fairly wide at 3/4". The best part, for me, is the reversible draw-bolt/lock, which is also fixed in alignment so you do not have to re-align it while reassembling the square. The lock is reversible so that you can select which graduation and scale you want to view on the preferred side of use. I am right-handed and like the scale to be on my side and be the view with 1/16" graduations. This can easily be arranged.
The blade material is base steel, not stainless, so you must oil it frequently to keep the rust to a minimum. The oil will help keep it easy to slide anyway, so that's not big deal, but it will come off on your hands and that can complicate fine wood work.
The small spring in the lock is base steel also, so it will probably be the first part to go bad, not that it would prevent you from using the square.
November 27, 2013