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PostPosted: March 1, 2012, 7:17 pm 
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Joined: July 17, 2008, 9:11 am
Posts: 5501
Location: West Chicago,IL
I have had my HF Digital angle finder for a few years now. It has been great for setting the blade perpendicular on my table saw, setting the camber on my Locost and reading various angles. But I went to use it a week ago and found it to be Kaput! I have always had problems with it locking up when cold and had to warm it up before I used it, even when new. This time, my warm up tricks did not work, nor did adding fresh batteries. I opened it up for a look-see and didn’t see any broken traces, corroded connections or any other obvious issues. Rather than buy another HF unit and get a similar result, I thought I’d take my chances and try a different supplier. I purchased an iGAGING Angle Cube on eBay for ~29 bucks. This is basically the same tool for the same price (not including the HF 20% off coupon. So why am I writing this? Well I’ve had it a few minutes and already I like it better. Besides the obvious fact the the HF unit is broke and the iGAGING unitactually works, here are the differences:

I brought the iGAGING Angle Cube in from the cold mailbox. I immediately added the 9V battery and even while cold, it worked. The HF would have normally had to be warmed up first.

The iGAGING appears to have much flatter sides. It seems to sit more stable on flat surfaces. They claim it is CNC milled. I can’t say for sure as it is painted but it certainly appears more visually “square” than the HF unit.

The iGAGING has a much quicker response both when 1st turning it on and also when moving into position. To say it differently, it has a quicker settling time than the HF.

The iGAGING takes a standard 9V battery. The HF uses 3 lithium coin cells. (No real difference IMO)

The iGAGING has strong magnets on 3 sides. The HF has magnets on the bottom only. Both units read angles up to 90 degrees then decrement down to 0 deg so the extra magnets really don’t make much difference.

The iGAGING has been zero calibrated at the factory. Turn it on and read absolute angle from the get-go. The HF unit tells you to zero it on a horizontal surface at turn on, so I guess it only reads relative angles. Both units can be zeroed to some other angle than horizontal to read relative angles.

The iGAGING stated accuracy is +/_0.2 deg. The HF unit is +/_0.3 deg.

The iGAGING comes with a vinyl belt pouch with a Velcro flap.

Both units have auto off after a few minutes to save batteries.


The HF unit will read % angle change from a 1st reading. I’m not really sure how that works if your original angle is zero. I never used that function. The iGAGING unit has no such function.

the HF unit has a gasket to seal the back cover. The iGaging Angle Cube has not got a seal.

Gripes: This comment is for both of the units. I wish somebody would make one of these economical units with a backlight. It seems that I always am placing it in an area where lighting is not that great. Backlighting wouldn’t add more than a buck to the unit and would be well worth the cost to add such a feature.

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Chuck.

“Any suspension will work if you don’t let it.” - Colin Chapman

Visit my ongoing MGB Rustoration log: over HERE

Or my Wankel powered Locost log : over HERE


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PostPosted: March 1, 2012, 8:27 pm 
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Joined: November 13, 2009, 9:31 pm
Posts: 114
Location: Connecticut
Thanks for the review, I'd been thinking about getting the HF one one of these days, maybe now I won't. One question on the HF unit, you said you had it a few years, are you aware if they changed it at all since the one you have (had)?

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PostPosted: March 1, 2012, 9:21 pm 
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Joined: July 17, 2008, 9:11 am
Posts: 5501
Location: West Chicago,IL
I have no idea if my HF unit is the same as what they sell today. It certainly looks identical to the one they show on their website. I've only had the new unit for a few hours. The HF unit, an amazing instrument, I was never confident it was going to work when I went to use it or if I had to warm it or change batteries. Time will tell on the iGAGING unit.

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Chuck.

“Any suspension will work if you don’t let it.” - Colin Chapman

Visit my ongoing MGB Rustoration log: over HERE

Or my Wankel powered Locost log : over HERE


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PostPosted: March 2, 2012, 1:11 pm 
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Joined: January 14, 2009, 2:24 am
Posts: 505
Location: Edmonton, Alberta
RE - Bad lighting, you can use the hold button to lock a measurement, then pull it out of the badly lit area, and read. Works for areas where you can't get a good look at the display too.


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