Introducing “Bridge City Essentials”, Celebrating 25 Years of Toolmaking

The later half of the ’70′s and the first couple of years of the 80′s I was a studio furniture designer/maker–and there is no doubt that I would still be making furniture had I not become hyper allergic to wood dust.  For me, being a craftsman is simply an honorable profession for those who love working with their hands.

Bridge City is the direct result of my forced wood aversion and ironically Bridge City has made it possible for me to begin making things again–thanks to the low dust output and accuracy of the Jointmaker Pro. This is an exciting time for me creatively and the concept of “Silent Woodworking”  really resonates with how I want to pursue woodworking. I know it is not for everybody but I also know it is growing in appeal. In a way, we are creating the shop of my future with this 25th anniversary celebration.

I am pleased to share that over the next seven months we will be introducing the Bridge City Essentials. This is a series of tools, all made to order, that embody a harmonious union of form and function.  Each tool will represent a solution for an essential function found in all woodshops, large or small, silent or noisy. Each will be designed and crafted in such a way that reflects all we have learned over our 25 years of tool making. Each tool will also celebrate something unique and innovative that Bridge City has introduced into the woodworking marketplace–and all will be made from stainless steel as I have this unyielding fetish…

Please meet the first Bridge City Essential, the DSS-6 Double Square.


This little square, once in hand, is impossible to ignore. The heft, the feel and the function represents our very best effort. In addition to a fully functional 6″ double square, the DSS-6 also features a 2″ saddle square–an innovation we introduced about 10 years ago. The combination is an obvious improvement over traditional designs and the tool packs a wallop functionally in such a small footprint. And yes, it is square.

The design borrows from our HP-7 Shoulder Plane in that the radial knurled locking knob resides in a spherical pocket–it is our way of keeping circles and squares in tune.


Small enough to fit into your apron pocket and yet accurate enough for large projects, the DSS-6 will be my square of choice for 99% of what I make moving forward. It is meticulously machined from a stainless steel billet and comes with three satin chrome blades options.

The DSS-6 is available for immediate delivery. We will only make them again if there is sufficient demand.

Thanks for taking the time to read about the ‘Bridge City Essentials’. The next member will be introduced in late June.


6 comments on this post:

  1. John,
    Congratulations on the silver anniversary of your endeavor. I loved the story about the “lawyer” returning the tools. Takes all kinds!
    Wayne Stump

  2. I’ve already ordered my DSS-6, and can hardly wait for it to arrive. Natasha intimated that there was a series of interesting tools coming out this year. I can hardly wait to see what they are. My credit card is whimpering in fear!

  3. Beautiful square John. Excited to see what else is coming.

    I see the DSS-6 are already sold out. What is timing on them being back in stock?


  4. I could be wrong, but I don’t think this is sold out–we have had some software glitches with the warehouse inventory system. Call the office on Monday to double check.

  5. I was finally able to get back to woodworking, and the DSS-6 is my new favorite tool! I’ve been using it all weekend – it just fits the hand so well, and looks so classy sitting on the workbench. Thank you for such a beautifully designed and functional tool, John! Don’t know how I’ve lived without it all this time…

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