Whether you are a professional woodworker, or just do it as a hobby, there is always good reason to take time to learn more about the skill. There are always new tricks that are discovered, as well as new tools to hit the market to make your work easier. If you want to learn more you need to read the article that follows.
Use stop blocks to your advantage for more accurate work. When cutting a lot of pieces the same size, no matter how carefully you measure, you often find small variations. Use a pre-cut stop block to make those measurements pinpoint accurate. Then the table saw will stop at just the right length length.
If you will be re-coating an existing finish, be sure that the surface is clean and free of any wax or oils. Then, let it dry completely, and lightly scuff the surface with a 220-grit sandpaper so that the finish you are applying will have something to hold onto.
Unless you are charging it, never leave your tools plugged in and unattended. You never know who might approach your tool, accidentally setting it off. Not only can this damage the items around it, but the person could be hurt and you could be left liable for the end result.
If you are trying new skills, make sure that you practice on some wood that has no value, like some scraps. You don’t want to waste an expensive piece of wood before you know exactly what you are doing. Once you have mastered your new skills, you can move to a better piece of wood.
Avoid being a perfectionist about tape measures. Use story sticks and slowly move to cuts. It’s recommended that you cut on scrap wood before cutting on the wood you plan on using so that you can test it out to see if it will fit. Planning your cuts in different ways helps you avoid getting bored.
Never cut any pieces of wood without checking for nails, screws and other metal. While donning a pair of goggles keeps your eyes protected, you are still at risk for other injuries. Inspect every piece of wood whether you are re-purposing it or using new lumber. You are better safe than sorry with this safety tip, and checking the boards only takes a few minutes of your time.
Keep your work area as clean as possible. Woodworking creates a lot of mess, especially dust. This dust can get into your home and eventually into your lungs. This can cause real health problems down the road for you and your family. So take a few minutes after a job, and sweep up your space.
Use woodworking kits when you’re just getting started. Such kits include already-cut wood pieces that fit to make a project. They offer a great way to begin developing your woodworking skills. The practice will save you money on wood and supplies in the future because you make less mistakes.
When caulking using silicone caulk, mist the caulk with a small amount of rubbing alcohol. The alcohol acts as a lubricant allowing your to smoothly run your finger through the caulk for a perfect line of caulk every time. Spraying the surrounding area with alcohol also keeps the caulk from adhering to the surrounding surfaces.
Always disconnect the power of your power tools before you change blades or do any maintenance work on it. It is very dangerous to leave the electrical tool plugged in when you change blades. If the tool turned on, it would be a catastrophe. Always remember this tip to stay safe while woodworking.
You can make a customized color of stain, but make sure the stains you are using are from the same manufacturer. Be sure that you use either all water-based stain, or all oil-based. Never mix the two. Finally, be certain to write down the exact amounts you used of each, so that the color can be duplicated if desired.
Choose your woodworking tools and equipment carefully if you live in a small space such as an apartment. You can still enjoy completing woodworking projects, but might have to forgo the 14-inch band saw. Pick tools that will do what you need but don’t take up too much space.
It is possible to put a water-based finish on top of an oil-based stain. However, you must wait a full twenty-four hours for the mineral spirits to fully evaporate from the oil-based stain. If the weather is wet or cold, it is better to wait another twenty-four hours before applying the finish.
Just one extension cord is always safer that a tangle of cords linked together. Unplug whatever tool you aren’t using, and plug in one that you will be using. Reduce the risk of tripping over cords or the possibility of a nasty shock with this basic safety procedure.
Ask for feedback along the way when you’re making something for other people. If you are creating a jewelry box, for example, make sure that you get a feel for how people are reacting to it before you’re done. That way, the other person is happy and you can be proud of your work.
Save the wood that you have for scrap because you may need it later on. You never know when you will need a small piece of wood to fill in a small gap or to help clamp together newly glued pieces of wood. They are also great to practice your cutting skills on.
When in a pinch, there are many tricks which can help you out. For example, if you can’t find a compass but you need to sketch a circle, use a hacksaw blade instead. Just put a nail into the blade’s hole to keep it on its axis, and stick your pencil into the teeth of the blade.
As you read at the beginning of this article, there is always something new to learn about the field of woodworking, no matter how long you have been doing it. Now that you have read the article, you know that is true because you have surely learned something yourself. Now all you need to do is apply the tips so that they become part of your routine.