Jorgensen Compound Miter Box

A few months ago I was browsing through my local thrift store when I stumbled upon this miter box. I’ve seen hundreds of miter boxes in my day, but this was the first handtool compound miter box I had ever seen.

It’s a Jorgensen No 64020 Compound Miter Box made during the 1980’s or ’90’s in complete condition with its original instruction sheet. The price at $15 was too good to pass up so I brought it home to play with it.

The miter box appeared to be well made with smooth action on the vertical axis swing, wood support, repetive cut stop, and a hold down clamp. After figuring out how the tool worked, I was excited to put it to use.

I grabbed a piece of pine and randomly set the angles on the vertical and horizontal axes and gave it a go. After a few minutes of cutting, I was finally able to cut the piece off. The blade is either dull or the teeth are set so fine, that it easily binds in the wood. I measured the teeth on the blade and they’re 20TPI. I’m thinking that maybe this tool was meant to cut woods like balsa for model airplane building.

I went online to find a replacement blade, but unfortunately they are no longer made. Craftsman makes a 16″ long replacement blade but this one is 24″. I guess I could make a new out out of old miter box saw blade and use this one as the template. That may be a fun thing to try someday.

So right now, it sits underneath one of my workbenches out of the way collecting dust. What a shame! It looks like a really cool miter box that would come in handy for cutting intricate molding that would be too dangerous to perform on a powered miter box.

8 thoughts on “Jorgensen Compound Miter Box

  1. I used a smaller version of these when teaching at a boys prison! Made scale model houses with 3/8″ x 3/4″ 2×4’s! Great little tool but accuracy is lacking. One good thing though is you can cut that blade up and make wonderful scratch stock. I had some success with it to cut the socket for sliding dovetails — takes up a lot of shop space so eventually sold mine.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Carl

    I have one of these. Bought it in the 90s. I found Nobex replacement blades at Highland Woodworking – same length, etc. but about 1/8″ narrower. So, I just put a little bit of 1/8″ MDF or plywood on the bed with some double-sided tape, and I’m good to go.
    You got a good price on it. I recall paying upwards of $100.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Carl

        The one I bought has a 24.5″ length – it’s called the “Nobex Champion” blade (I still have the sleeve it came in). The “Nobex Proman” is 22 1/4 inches. The Champion blade is identical in length to the Jorgensen blades I still have. It’s 1/4″ narrower.

        Liked by 1 person

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