Marking gauge and knife

I'm looking at getting a marking gauge and knife (pups Christmas gifts to me😉).  There is a WIDE range of prices.  Any suggestions on what you have used as effective, and affordable?  

29 Replies

Both are really useful. The marking gauge you linked allows for left and right marks which covers it all.
They are indispensable for me when marking lengths for fitting mitered trim around boxes, The flat side allows the mark to be exactly in-line with the surface measured against. Tablesaw cut is then set to just remove the line.

Marking gauges are useful for layout, but choice of a wheel/blade/pin are kind of personal. Wheels can wobble, pins and blades can follow the grain when marking a board edge. Adjustment can also be finicky on some models.
Barb I had that Veritas knife, and loved it. I didn't sell it, so that probably means it's buried under something in the shop. I look forward to finding it.

I have the gauge that one is modeled after the Tite Mark gauge made by Kevin Drake, I think that type is the best gauge you can get. The LV is much less money than the TM, but it is great quality. 

I think to start out both items will serve you well. 
I got a real nice marking nice from Eric the loft. It's a Narex blade and he made the handle out of purple heart.
Thank you all for the feedback and insights.  I have been watching some videos (as I have no experience with marking gauges or knives) as well.  May end up going with the ones I found at Lee Valley.  

If you feel adventurous, and wanna save some coin you might go to Taylor Tools and look at his kits. He has both kits to make marking gauges, and scribing/marking knives. Or he has lower cost variations of the two tools you listed already made. His tools are generally pretty good quality, if you had questions about a specific one, just post a note. 
I don't think I'll try a kit, but will look out some of the other options.  Thanks!

Edit:  Hmmm... this one looks interesting 
The "micro adjust" is a great feature when trying to align the cutter with the marks on you ruler, all about 1" from your nose! 🤠
I have the LV marking gauge and Glen Drake's Tite-Mark.  The Tite-Mark stands head a shoulders above the other in my experience and is worth the extra expense.  IMHO, YMMV.
CL810 - I appreciate your comparison.  At this point in my woodworking hobby, I can't justify the price of the Tite-Mark.  Thus, narrowing my search for a decent, but more affordable option.  Maybe someday I'll be working at a level, and on projects, that warrant the higher level.  
I just saw in LV's Christmas catalog that they have a marking gauge with micro-adjustment.  In my comment above I was referring to the gauge in BB1's first post above.  After reading all of the comments again I'm wondering if George's comments were about LV's gauge with micro-adjustment?
It looks like there are two options - not sure of the difference?  This vs this (first is about $10 more) - both are 
Veritas marking gauges, but first is not "centered" (not sure if that's the main difference, seems like it could be helpful).  Once again, looking, but realizing I don't know what I don't know. 🤷‍♀️

The offset face is handy in that you can have a larger surface referencing off you part without the entire face being much larger. 
The other difference I can see is the location of the adjustment screw.
Splintergroup- and they noted it may be less likely to roll (i.e., off the bench and crashing to the floor!).  I think it was Rob Cosman who grinds a flat section to avoid the rolling effect.
The offset is helpful when trying to mark pieces that my have differing dimensions so as not to have to hang the board over the edge of a bench…and it’ll keep it from rolling around too!

Ryan/// ~sigh~ I blew up another bowl. Moke told me "I made the inside bigger than the outside".

Ryan - that's another good reason.  Interesting that this is the only one I've seen designed like that in my initial searches.
Probably because it’s really not needed, and increases production costs. 

Ryan/// ~sigh~ I blew up another bowl. Moke told me "I made the inside bigger than the outside".

This is the one I saw in the catalog that I wonder if it is a new item.
lot of money for a simple tool that does one simple thing. ive seen many people make there own using a carbide cutter from a lathe tool, and it will do the same thing just as well. look on lj's, there are many that people made. jim jakosh has a few posted.

heres one posted here by frew scmidt.

working with my hands is a joy,it gives me a sense of fulfillment,somthing so many seek and so few find.-SAM MALOOF.

Thanks Pottz - as with much in this hobby, making vs buying...