 Simple Methods for Determining Whether your Assembly is Square

October 9, 2018Olen Murriel

Woodworkers know how even small variance can affect their work. They will end up having ugly gaps, wonky cabinets or even lids that are not fitting. For this reason, they are always obsessed with squareness.

One of the best

method of checking whether an item or assembly is square is the use of Pythagorean’s Theorem. It is a very simple method and has been used for many years. Pythagorean’s Theorem is a mathematical method used to check if an assembly is square. According to the theorem, in case of a right triangle, adding the squares of two sides will give you the equal result to the square of the third side also known as the hypotenuse.

You can do this by following these simple steps

First, you need to choose the face that you need to know if it is square. Make sure one corner of the item is a right angle by use of framing. Get the length of one edge from the right angle. You can use a calculator to square the value. Note the squared value somewhere or save it in the memory of a calculator.

After that, you will take the measurement of one of the edges next to the edge you measured earlier to get the assembly width. Square the value of the width as you had done previously. Add the value to the value you had noted down or saved in the memory of a calculator.

At this point, it is the only third value you don’t have. To get it, you need to take the measurement of the hypotenuse. This is by measuring diagonally from length edge open end to that of the width edge open end. Then square the value of the hypotenuse to get its squared value. This value of the hypotenuse should be equal to the value you got after adding the two squared sides.

The 3-4-5 Rule for woodworkers is an advanced version of Pythagorean Theorem. It is used to establish the layout of a square. Also, it is used to check a project to ensure that its angles are square.

When using the 3-4-5 method when woodworking, this is how it works

Take one side of a corner and measure three inches. Mark the measurement from the corner. Do the same from the opposite side of the corner but this time measure four inches. Then take the measurement of the distance between the two marks. The distance should be five inches for your corner to be considered square.

The unit of measurement is not the key element but the proportions used are the key elements. You can use 9-12-15 or 6-8-10 because they have the same proportions. You can use any measurement standard such as feet, inches, meters or centimeters.

When using 3-4-5 rule it will be faster for you to check whether the project you are about to complete is square. Another advantage is that you can use it in almost all size projects. As long as you don’t change the proportions relationship the unit you use doesn’t matter.