What is a Speed Square

You will find it is also great for aligning pieces of wood together, making sure a factory cut is correct. Checking door frames or cabinet installation for square. Also a great tool for laying out stair stringers.

You can mark out a diagonal line of any degree from 0 to 90. Using guide stops will help if you need to make multiple cuts of the same angle.

Here is a demonstration of some great uses for your speed square.




The speed square comes in standard 7 inch and also 12 inch for bigger projects.


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  1. I have one in my tool cache… I’ll be one to admit I don’t know how to use half of the features it provides. The ones in this video though, I have that down. As far as the folks commenting on people not knowing how to use one and hiring someone… there is a bowl of dicks somewhere with your name in it to much on.. go find it and enjoy yourself. I’d rather do it my damn self and maybe$#%&!@*up a few cuts than use a dipshit “professional” with your attitudes.

  2. I’ve been a carpenter 23 years when I started we used a 2′ framing square. The speed square is a useful tool that I use 100 or more times a day. Its saves so much time. when I need a level cut on a 10/12 and a seat cut on a 8/12. I can mark the level and get the number of degrees for my seat cut to set saw for the bevel. Very efficient tool.

  3. An equilateral triangle has three equal lenth sides and is also equi-angular. A right triangle has one 90° angle. So therefore a right triangle, which is what a swanson speed square is, cannot be an equilateral triangle.

  4. My only complaint with any speed square is that is only 7″ long. 2x8s float around 7and 1/4″ why not make them 7 and 1/2 when seated in the 90 degree position? I know I’d buy one a whistle bigger.

  5. The Speed Square combines some of the common functions of the framing square, try square, and combination square built into one tool. It was originally designed for craftsmen for laying out rafters and stair stringers quickly

  6. Great story about speed square:
    I was working with my nine year old daughter on a woodworking project. I asked her ” honey can you hand me that square?” She looked around all confused at what I was pointing at. So I just reached over and grabbed the square. She says to me “daddy that’s not a square, that’s a triangle.”

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