Tiger Claw, Triton, Akeda, and Ryobi Products

New Tools


Tiger Claw, Triton, Akeda, and Ryobi Products

Porter-Cable, known for their innovation and high quality tools, has done it again with the new Tiger Claw Reciprocal Saw (shown above). The problem with reciprocal saws has been their sometimes-unwieldy length. If you are trying to get in close or are in tight quarters the tool is a problem.

That is, until now. Porter Cable’s new Tiger Claw Reciprocal Saw solves such space problems in a hurry. It bends and twists. With the press of a button the Tiger Claw head raises or lowers 90 degrees (with 13 positive stops) or it rotates 360 degrees.

The new Tiger Claw has a unique and fast blade-changing button that requires no tools and an adapter that lets you put a shorter jig-saw blade in it for those really tight spots.

The Tiger Claw has power as well with its 11.5 amp variable speed motor that cuts from 0 to 2,900 strokes per minute. Add to that a 1 ¼” stroke and you have one great tool with a ***** star rating.

Triton Router

In this issue I have chosen four new and innovative tools that all deserve our highest rating. If you’re looking to pick up a router, reciprocating saw, thickness planer or dovetail jig, be sure to check out the features of these new and impressive tools.

One doesn’t usually associate Australia with the manufacturing of woodworking tools, but maybe that is just a quirk that we, living north of the equator, seem to have. That is, until Triton, a company based in Melbourne, introduced their Triton Plunge Router. This is one great tool.

The Triton Router (rated at 2400 watts) is equivalent to a 3-1/2hp machine. It is a variable speed tool with many features previously unseen in a router. First, and probably foremost, is the fact that the Triton Router is as comfortable to use above or below the table.

The tool has a couple of unique features for under-the-table use. First, the plunge spring pops out with the twist of a screwdriver. Second, when you raise it up to its highest point, two things happen. You will quickly see that the entire collet head sits well above the table surface and, second, the motor shaft locks so a onehanded bit change becomes possible. When the router is under the table, all controls are at your fingertips and facing front. An illuminated power switch is very visible and the simple turning of the handle raises or lowers the tool. In addition there is a microwinder for precision adjustments. In the upright position the Triton Router performs equally as well. In the plunge mode you can do either a direct plunge or use the winder handle to feed it slowly. The lock-down is simple and convenient, with no fumbling; it’s right where it should be.

The Triton is a big machine. When you first lay eyes on it, you can see it is quality built and Triton backs this with a three year warranty! The tool has a “soft-start” feature and a speed control that regulates it from 8,000 to 20,000 RPMs. As if that isn’t enough, they have a front and rear safety shield that is crystal clear. Want more? You’ve got it. The Triton comes equipped with a base plate that includes a multifunction fence with a circle-cutting feature. Still more features include a 1/2” router bit, a 1/4” collet, and a Triton 1/2” straight router bit.

How did I rate the Triton Router? The maximum is a ***** star and the Triton Router Plunger gets all of them easily. Busy Bee Tools are Triton dealers.

Akeda Dovetail Jig


Akeda is a Vancouver company that makes a tool that blew me away with its ease of use, simplicity of design, and innovation. Akeda makes the model DC-16 Dovetail Jig that has so many neat features that you just have to see for yourself.

Half-blind, through dovetails, box joints, rabbeted drawer fronts, variably spaced, the Akeda does it all. The jig will handle stock up to 16” wide – wide enough for the majority of work.

The Akeda is different from other dovetail jigs. It is a heavy and stable tool and its top surface prevents any chance of the router tipping and destroying the guide pins. In addition, your work is clearly visible even with the dust port in position.

The dust port, by the way, takes better than 90% of the dust right into your shop vacuum. Akeda supplies two carbide-tipped dovetail bits and, if you get the optional accessory kit, eight more bits are included along with the dust port.

If you want more innovation, Akeda has it. A single knob clamps the boards accurately and securely. Just turn on the router. Another ***** star rating, this time for Akeda.

Ryobi 13” Thickness Planer

Ryobi has hit the front pages again as they continue to prove that they are in the professional tool business. Home Depot just received the new Ryobi 13” Thickness Planer and it has features that are very impressive. The model AP1300 has 11 1/2” chromed infeed/outfeed tables, and a Rapid-Set knife-changing system that makes knife changing a breeze. The knives are doubleedged and they can be moved laterally to extend their life. Moving one knife slightly left or right will nicely compensate for a knick.

The AP1300 has an eight-stop re-plane set gauge for positive thickness control.

For example, if you set the gauge at 3/4”, you can be assured that the boards coming out are precisely that.

The head raising/lowering handle controls all four posts and a slick lever to lock the cutter head to help prevent “snipe”. The planning depth gauge tells you the exact depth setting for that board so that you will not run the board through and take off too much or too little. The 15-amp motor is a hungry beast that handles oak and maple like it was pine.

Ryobi includes a dust hood that will accept both 4” and 2 1/4” dust collection hoses, a neat hinged compartment on top of the machine for tools and accessories and a cloth pocket under the out-feed table to keep the owners manual and the power cord.

Speaking of power cords, Ryobi supplies their corded tools with a 10’ cord and have been for sometime now. The other manufacturers still use the old 8’ measure. Ryobi gets another ***** star home run with this under $450 winner.


GRAHAM McCULLOCH is a woodworker and writer living in Halifax, NS
Graham McCulloch

(902) 479-0221