Never use your fingers like a guide. Use a piece of thin wood instead to help push along the piece. This helps you keep every finger, which are required for doing future woodworking.

TIP! Understand your wood. No two pieces of wood are alike.

Woodworking is a skill that has always been prized and in demand. No matter how good you are at this craft, there is something everyone can learn to help improve their skills. The following paragraphs are full of ideas you can use to be a better woodworker.

Always use the recommended size nail for your job. Nails that are too wide tend to split the wood, weakening the hold. Small nails won’t give a good bond. Always try to pick the right size nail for your job.

TIP! Add spring to the grip. You may only have one hand available when you need to use spring clamps.

Always apply a pre-stain conditioner to the wood you want to stain. A good pre-stain condition helps to even out any imperfections in your project that a stain can accentuate. It will also help to improve the appearance of the wood itself, as wood has a natural grain and the conditioner fills it in to some degree.

Having a couple of beers when you are working on a project may seem like a good idea sometimes. But it is never wise to drink while using saws. Avoid alcohol when working with woodworking tools. Also, never take any major drugs prior, whether they are prescription or illegal.

TIP! You should make sure you use the right species of wood for the project you are working on. Soft woods can scratch easily and shouldn’t be used for a table.

Use stair gauges as a crosscut guide. Match them to the rise and run of your stair jack, then attach them to the carpenter’s square. Mark the notches in them. Put them on your carpenter’s square guide for a great cut.

Always remember to stay in contact with people. Woodworking shops tend not to have Internet access. Still, you are going to get stumped or stuck on particular projects. Talk to woodworkers to get advice in these situations. Someone, somewhere else in the world has certainly experienced your issue in the past.

TIP! Use your woodworking talents to create a great yard area. You can build something simple like a bird feeder, or something harder like a deck.

It is important that you have a realistic idea of your budget and what you can make with it. Your eyes can get bigger than the amount of money you want to spend very quickly when it comes to woodworking projects. It’s easy to get so excited to make something and then not have the money to complete the project. Be sure to budget in advance to be prepared for any eventuality.

Listen up for anyone you know personally that is wanting to sell a home. Skills in woodworking may come in handy to earn some extra money by increasing the value of a home. You can make a post for the mailbox or take on an entire kitchen rehab.

TIP! When you first start out with your woodworking, try using some kits that are available. All the wood has been pre-cut for you in these kits and it is your task to simply put them together.

Make sure you choose the right wood for each project that you work on. Different types of wood can handle different levels of stresses. Some are stronger than others. If you aren’t sure how a wood type will respond to your project plans, then you should research the wood before you begin.

Make your own reusable sanding blocks. A sanding block is useful for using sandpaper, as it gives you greater control while being less stressful on your hands, however it is not necessary to purchase an expensive holder. You can use a piece of plywood for your sanding block. Cut out scraps of wood for the sandpaper, then spray it with the adhesive and apply the sandpaper.

Gel Stains

Use only one extension cord when woodworking. Just unplug a tool when you are finished with it and plug the new one in that you want to use. This safety precaution will keep you from tripping and guard against electrocution.

TIP! Research plans online to get new ideas. Though you might divert from theirs somewhat, they can serve as a great place to begin.

Gel stains make staining furniture items easier. Liquid stains are prone to running, while gel stains tend to stick. Gel stains also allow for consistent color on pieces since it is thicker.

Save any scrap wood, as it often comes in handy for later projects. You might need it to fill a gap or to soften clamps. Small pieces of wood can also give you a chance to make practice cuts when using a new tool.

TIP! When working on a big project, keep in mind that there might be changes in the future. For instance, if you’re thinking of building a shed out back, would electricity be something you’d need to add? If that is the case, make certain you leave room for switches and wiring to be put in, in addition to space for your light fixture in the ceiling.

When you’re using any kind of laminate while working with wood a good way to trim your laminate is to use tin snips. Tin snips make cutting the laminate to size easier and quicker. If you can, get yourself some tin snips and then reserve them for laminate only for the best results.

Practice with any new tools or techniques before you start a project. Look through your scrap wood and find a similar size and type to the proposed project. If you aren’t getting success with it, then take out a different piece and keep repeating until you get better at it.

Power Tools

If you have to double check measurements each time you do circular saw cuts on a straight edge, try writing down your measurements from the blade to the shoe edge onto the shoe. Do this for each side of your blade. If you find it hard to read, try using a address label or other blank sticker, and write on that.

TIP! When first starting out in woodworking, you should not have to purchase all your tools at once. You should check sites like Freecycle or your family may have extra tools you can use.

Drinking some beer while woodworking may seem like fun. However, it is never wise to mix alcohol with the use of power tools. Avoid drinking alcohol while working around power tools. Illegal and prescription drugs should also be avoided when working with woods.

Make sure you use drawers to your advantage. An efficient use of drawers is especially important in a smaller woodshop. It is also a good idea to keep similar tools together. Any extra space is worthless if you’re unable to find your tools. Just use a logical system of storing your tools and stick to it, putting tools back when finished.

TIP! Always follow the directions for the project you are working on. Although this may seem a waste of time, it will actually save you time and money in the long run.

Pay attention to anyone that might be looking to unload their home. Even if you don’t sell items, you can still make money from woodworking. It can increase your home’s value. Maybe you can build a new mailbox for them, or even refurnish a kitchen.

While many people feel they can handle many things while they’ve been drinking alcohol or taken a drug, don’t do that with woodworking. It may seem refreshing to have a cool beer when it is hot, but it can increase the chance of injuries. Many prescription medications and ones found at the drugstore can have a negative effect, as well. Stay away from medications that can impair your abilities when woodworking.

TIP! PBS offers a variety of woodworking shows you can enjoy. These shows help teach a variety of woodworking skills.

Don’t push too hard when you sand. Using pressure while sanding can make the surface uneven. You don’t have to use force if you are using the right grit. Sand lightly, using circular movements.

Painter’s tape is often used in the wood shop. Cutting along this tape will reduce splintering and also give you a straight line guide. Painter’s tape also prevents glue from settling into wood.


Make your own reusable sanding block. Sanding blocks make sanding easier, gives you more control and you can make your own. You can use a chunk of scrap wood instead. You can use these to create sandpaper as well.


Before you sand something, you should get the surface a little wet. This will help to raise the grain. This helps get rid of unwanted fine scratches. This will allow you to have a professional looking woodworking project when you’re finished. It might also save you work in the future.


It is not surprising that woodworking hobbies and skills have withstood the tests of time. A good woodworker is always appreciated. Regardless of your level of involvement in woodworking, the tips included here should help you.

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