Kreg K4 vs. Kreg K5: Which is Better for You?
Kreg has been making woodworking jigs for close to three decades now, and it is one of the most well-known and trusted brands in this industry. What woodworkers seem to love most about Kreg jigs is that every new one that comes out is always an improvement over its predecessor and it tries to address most of the previous shortcomings. The Kreg K4 and K5 are their two most popular jigs.
Whether you are an experienced woodworker that knows everything about pocket-hole joinery or not, these Kreg jigs will always make things easier for you. With their Kreg Jig K4 or Kreg Jig K5, you will get the confidence you need to start your garage storage shelves or media center project and finish it fast.
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Kreg K4 vs. Kreg K5
What Can Kreg K4 Do?
The Kreg K4 is a perfect tool for your DIY projects, and it will help make pocket joinery fast and almost effortless. Whether you are a professional or you are just starting your first woodworking projects, the Kreg K4 will be a handy kit for you and here is why.
#1. 3-Hole Drill Guide
The 3-hole drill guide is one of the most outstanding features of this jig because it makes it possible to drill perfect pocket holes on materials with varying widths and thicknesses. With this guide, you can make the holes from 1/2 an inch all the way to 1-1/2 inches with increments of 1/8 inch. Apart from the drill guide, the unit has a hardened steel core that that supports the workpiece and the company backs it with a lifetime guarantee.
#2. Sturdy Toggle Clamp
The sturdy toggle clamp is one of the few features that you can get from most jigs by Kreg that come before the K4. This rear-mounted clamp design offers exceptional rigidity while also holding the workpiece with uncompromising strength. Also, making adjustments is easy as it is all about releasing the locknut and then rotating it to the setting that you want.
#3. Large Clamping Recess
Kreg K4 comes with a large clamping recess that makes it possible to clamp it on your workbench so that it can remain in place when drilling. You can clamp the jig with any C-clamp, standard bar clamp or Kreg’s multipurpose face clamps.
#4. Superior Angle
Most jigs out there have an angle of approach that is quite shallow which compromises the quality of the pocket hole. Kreg K4 takes care of this common shortcoming with its optimized drilling angle that increases driving efficiency while also minimizing the size of the pocket hole that you create to ensure that it is always less than 1-1/2 inches.
#5. Wood-Chip Relief
Kreg K4 comes with one wood-chip relief for each drill hole whose primary purpose is to ensure that excess wood chips do not accumulate in the drill. The wood-chip relief helps to minimize drill torque and in turn, increase the lifespan of your drill bits. Without the excess wood chips in the drill, you will also be able to create a perfect pocket hole with one plunge.
What Kreg K5 Can Do Over Kreg K4
The Kreg K5 builds on the good features of the K4, and the company also addresses the shortcoming of the latter to ensure that it performs even better. Although the two still have many similarities, there are a few things that set the K5 apart from the K4.
#1. Easy Thickness Adjustment
The workpiece clamping system on this jig is one of the easiest you will get anywhere. Unlike the K4 it has a ratcheting clamp that slides into place against your material very easily. Once it slides into place, you only need to lift the handle till it makes two clicks and it will be ready.
#2 .Support Wings with Built-in Storage
Lack of support for a large piece is one of the main shortcomings of previous Kreg jigs. The K5 fixes this problem with some large support wings that you can attach on both sides fast and effortlessly. With these wings, long pieces will get the support they need to ensure they do not tip and each of the wings has a storage compartment for screws, drill bits, and other small accessories.
#3. Swiveling Dust Collector Port
The K4 and most other Kreg jigs that come before the K5 have a rigid dust collection port. However, K5 has a removable one that swivels from one side to the other to make it possible to position it just where you want it so that you can attach a standard vacuum hose.
#4. Front Mounted Handle
The front-mounted handle on this jig makes clamping very easy. Although the handle on the K4 is still very convenient, it is at the back. With the handle at the front, the setup of the K5 is fast and very straightforward.
Expert woodworkers have a lot of positive things to say about both the Kreg K4 and K5 because they are way much better than most other jigs on the market.
#1. Kreg Jig K4
With the K4 most woodworkers love the numerous improvements from the Kreg K3 that came out before it and the hard plastic body that makes it very durable. Also, the ease of use seems to impress most, but there are also a few complaints such as the lack of support for long pieces and the markings not being clear enough.
#2. Kreg Jig K5
Most expert reviews on the Kreg K5 seem to focus on the fact that it addresses all the shortcoming of the K4. Unlike its predecessor, it has support wings, a front mounted handle, and the markings are in a white color that makes them easier to see. With this jig, there is almost no negative element or shortcomings even for the experts.
Which Should I Buy
Both the Kreg K5 and K4 are some excellent tools, and they will always guarantee that you get some perfect pocket holes for your woodworking projects. But if you are to choose one from the two the best idea is to go for the Kreg K5 as it has more and better accessories such as the extension wings, ratcheting front-side clamp, swiveling dust collector port and a few more.
As you make your choice between the two, it is important to remember that the K5 is an advancement of the K4 and it builds on the successes and shortcomings of the latter. Also, the K5 has almost everything that the K4 has, but the vice-versa is not true.