The following is a review from Jim Dillon of The Thousand Dollar Shop, shared here with his permission. Jim won the set of bench dogs in the Flair Woodworks Shop Stool Build-Off, but was neither asked nor compensated for his review.
About a week ago, I got an envelope in the mail from Canada [which] contained a set of wooden bench dogs from Time Warp Tool Works, a company known mainly for wooden molding planes. My bench already has 3/4″ holes for round metal bench dogs, so I was able to compare them side by side right away.
They are, hands down, much better looking than my aluminum dogs:
They’re interesting in their differences from both these aluminum dogs I have, and the brass dogs made by another Canadian concern.
The main difference, of course, is that they’re wood. They’re made of ash, which is one of my very favorite hardwoods. All four of my dogs have the grain running perpendicular to the square face, which reminded me of how we were taught to hold baseball bats when we were kids. Freshly machined, unfinished ash (like these are) has a bright, clean surface that almost gleams, a sort of brightness that oak never seems to have. So my first impression of these guys was very strongly positive.
The next difference is that these lack a longitudinal spring, like almost all bench dogs, round or square, metal or wood, I’ve ever used have had. Instead, the dogs are held at the height you want by bullet catches. I have no idea how this will play out long term, but really, why wouldn’t that work? Unless you hear back from me later, assume it works fine. For now, I can tell that they’re slightly easier to adjust than the metal ones.
At first, I thought they must be a smaller diameter than the metal ones, because they’re so light, and because they fall down into their hole until they reach the bullet catch. But I got out the digital caliper and saw that, nope, they’re the same diameter as the aluminum: a couple of hundredths of an inch under 3/4″.
These are my new favorite bench dogs!