Swanson Sliding Bevel TS149 Review
The Swanson Sliding Bevel TS149 is one of the most popular models among hobbyists. Its popularity stems from its price point, which makes it affordable for many. But if you’re looking for something with a little more power, then there are other options available such as the John S. Johnson Level or the Stanley #75.
These tools have their own advantages and disadvantages, so let’s take a closer look at each.
John S. Johnson Level: A Great Tool For Beginners
If you’re just getting started with woodworking, then the John S. Johnson Level might be the perfect tool for you because it doesn’t cost much money and offers plenty of power. You’ll need to buy a set of these tools though; they aren’t cheap!
It comes with a pair of 1/4″ and 3/8″ bits, two 1/2″ bits, a chisel bit driver, and a jig saw. All of these items come in handy when working on projects like furniture or trim work. If you don’t already have them, get some sandpaper to buff up your workpiece before starting any cutting operations.
The tool itself is comfortable to grip. It’s also quite light, so you shouldn’t experience any hand fatigue when using it. Unlike the other levels we have discussed so far, this one doesn’t come with a built-in level or a vial that indicates whether or not it is perfectly straight. While these tools are helpful, they aren’t as important for beginning woodworkers.
Your main concern should be producing high-quality cuts, and this tool can definitely help you with that.
The only major drawback of this tool is its lack of power. It can cut through softwoods like pine and balsa, but you will struggle with hardwoods such as oak or maple. Furthermore, it doesn’t have the power to cut metal, so you shouldn’t even bother trying to use it for that purpose.
Stanley #75: A Powerful Workhorse
The John S. Johnson Level is great for beginning woodworkers, but more experienced hobbyists will get the most out of the Stanley #75. This tool has stood the test of time, and it’s one of the most popular woodworking tools ever created.
The #75 has an all-metal body and feels very solid in your hands. It’s heavy, so it won’t cause any hand fatigue. The smooth level vial is easy to read and will indicate whether your cuts are straight or not. The bubble levels are also easy to see and help you make sure that your cuts are perfectly level.
This tool can cut through both softwoods and hardwoods with ease. It can even handle thicker materials like plywood without slowing down. It’s also more than capable of cutting through metal. In fact, it can even cut through stone.
The only drawback of this tool is that it is not battery powered. If your workshop doesn’t have an outlet near your work area, then you might find the lack of cord to be inconvenient. The handle can also get hot if you’re using it for long periods of time. This problem can be avoided by wearing gloves, but that means added hassle and expense.
Which One Is Right For You?
Both of these tools have their own advantages and disadvantages. If you’re on a tight budget, then the John S. Johnson Level is probably the better choice because it is cheaper. It also allows you to cut through metal if you grab the proper bits. If you can afford to spend a little more money, then the Stanley #75 is definitely a superior choice. It’s a great tool that will serve you well for many years.
No matter which tool you choose, you’ll be able to make perfect cuts like a professional woodworker. You’ll be able to craft gorgeous pieces of furniture for your home and you’ll have a lot of fun doing it!
If you’re looking for a cheaper option, then we recommend the SKIL 5292-04. It doesn’t have the power of the other two tools, but it’s half the price and still gets the job done. Just don’t try to use it for anything other than wood, or it might not work very well.
The Greenlee GT-185 offers a happy medium. It’s more expensive than the SKIL, but much cheaper than the #75. It can handle most projects, but you might experience some issues if you try to cut through harder materials such as metal or stone. Otherwise, it’s a great tool to own.
Lastly, we have the DWE4018. This tool is great for people who mainly work with wood, but it can cut through other materials with ease. It’s more expensive than the Greenlee, but cheaper than the #75. It might be a good option if you’re looking for something in the middle.
Having one of these top-rated wood routers in your workshop will allow you to take on the projects you’ve been dreaming of and help you complete them with ease. No matter which one you choose, you’ll have a blast creating your next masterpiece.
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