MW Header

From an Edge Finder to a Center Finder

By D. J. Wiederhold


Years ago, a friend of mine broke the .200” diameter section off of his edge finder and was going to throw it away. I told him I would take it if he didn’t mind. I finally came up with a use for it after it sat in my toolbox for many, many years.

I recently had a plate with a bunch of holes in it that I needed to do some work on and wanted to pick up the location of the existing holes. I decided to make a cone shaped end to put on that old edge finder.


I made the hole depth in the cone .03” less than the remaining, movable section of the edge finder. This allowed me to see when the fixed and movable sections coincided. The tool worked great and I quickly had an accurate layout of the hole locations.

I think this is a handy tool for any shop and you don’t need to break an edge finder to make one for yourself, as it could just as easily be made to fit over the end of a working edge finder.

I know you can buy an edge finder with a cone shape already on one end, but the only ones I’ve ever seen are for small diameter holes. I made this one with a 5/8” OD.


It’s usually the case that you throw something away and then find a situation where you could have used it. I’m glad I held onto this one!

Thanks Bob, your subscription has been extended by an issue!

Please do us a tremendous favor and forward this e-mail on to your machining friends!

subscribe image

*Your customer number {Customer_ID} will come in handy during registration.
Village Press Publications, 2779 Aero Park Dr., Traverse City, MI 49686, 800-447-7367