E-Z Dial


John's Tool Crib
by John Cupp

Press Release

E-Z Dial

“The Hardest Working Router Bit
In Any Boat Builders Tool Box“

I once used a Dado to cut slots in wood until I discovered the handheld router. From then on it was a progression of router bit buying for every project I needed to do. Then it went to a router table because the bits became too large. Don’t get me wrong I’m old and ugly enough to enjoy a romp through the “Tool Store” any day. Besides I have worked hard most of my life and if buying a router bit is one of those simple pleasures I still enjoy, why should I deny myself? There is a point of diminishing returns though. How many different slot sizes does it really take to have a complete set up from 1/8” to ½”? This is where my tool review comes into it’s own.

A very intelligent inventor must have pondered that same question and came up with a very unique answer. I have tried a few supposedly simple adjustable slot cutters for my routers and with all the shims and other paraphernalia it just didn’t seem worth the trouble. Another trip to the “Tool Store” was actually more enjoyable, that is until now. Amana Tool has just introduced an adjustable slot cutter for ½” collet routers that is as simple as turning a knob.

I saw an announcement about the tool in an industry newsletter and I immediately called Amana Tool to see if I could get one of these slot cutters for testing. The Amana Tool representative was very gracious and sent one of the tools for testing. I could hardly wait for it to arrive I was so anxious to test it. It arrived carefully packaged, padded and taped so that no damage could have happened in shipping. Steps that I am happy for because some of the tools I receive look as though they have been attacked by sledgehammers. I won’t mention any names but some package express companies hire mace-wielding monkeys to play with the boxes at their terminals.

I never can get over the fact that if a box is carried in a truck it’s a shipment. But if it is carried by a boat its called cargo. Maybe I just have a lot more time to think about these things instead of writing like I should be doing.

The product package itself is simple, functional and attractive. It consists of a blue foam box with a heavy plastic slipcover that should protect its precious contents for years along side your finest router bits. I opened the package and RTFB’ed the contents (read the frigging brochure). That is a step some boat builders neglect but it can cause major problems when doing so.

This router bit comes in two sizes, so you get two trips to the “Tool Store”. The #55500 covers everything from 1/8” up to ¼”. The #55510 covers everything from ¼” up to ½” they both accomplish this in increments of 0.004” and up to ½“ deep maximum. No shims, No washers and no cutter changes. You just use the wrench supplied with the E-Z DIAL and loosen the lock-nut then turn the dial until you have reached the size you require. Simple, yes but a complex tool if you had to design it from a billet of steel and carbide alloy.

But wait; there is even better news! Suppose you were to go out and buy every size router bit in 1/64” increments from 1/8” to ½”. Well I know my wife would be seeing red and my wallet would be devoid of all the green I once had. No I’m not talking flea market router bits, I mean honest to goodness brand name bits. Well way too much as far as my better half is concerned. But the brand new E-Z Dial bits are at an introduction price of $99.00 each. They will list for $149.99 in a few short months from now. I think it is a great deal.

I have had the ¼” to ½” bit for a while now and I have tested it using my router table and many different types of wood and composite materials and it has performed flawlessly. I would not use a hand held router with it as the directions warn you of this also. It is too much mass spinning way too fast to be able to control and besides you need a trip to the “Tool Store” anyway. If you need more information on the E-Z Dial go to the Amana website and read all the reviews from strictly wood working magazines and you can use the novel idea of buying it on-line there also.

You will not be disappointed if you buy it. The fit and finish of this tool is outstanding. The E-Z Dial is also very easy to use; one full turn of the ”dial” equals 0.04”. There are many uses for this tool in boat building; just one of them is cutting the slots for a cockpit sliding door. I am very sure you all can think of many more.

Tool crib to tool crib,