If you plan on staining your project, try using pre-stain conditioner on your wooden surfaces. A good pre-stain condition helps to even out any imperfections in your project that a stain can accentuate. Such conditioning agents smooth the wood surface and let stains sink in evenly.

TIP! Make your own sanding blocks. Cut six 3/4″ pieces of plywood for each sandpaper grit.

Do you like to see fine pieces of handcrafted woodworking projects? Have you wanted to do this yourself but didn’t know where to start. It is hard when you do not know what you are doing, but practice and creativity comes a long way. There are a lot of ways to get into woodworking, so keep reading if you’d like to know more.

Did you know that the height of your workbench is vital to the quality of work you produce? To determine the right height, measure between the floor and the middle of your own waist. This will be the optimum height for your ideal workbench.

TIP! Add a stair gauge to the shop that you create. This is used for laying out stair jacks and can also be used to clamp a carpenter’s square.

Select the appropriate kind of wood for your projects. In woodworking, not every wood can sustain every type of stress. If you haven’t been working with wood for long, take the time to educate yourself on the wood.

Know your wood’s properties before you use it. For instance, if a wood is paint grade, it’s probably not quality wood. Stain grade means the wood’s grain pattern makes it great for staining. If using veneer or particleboard, understand that particleboard absorbs a lot of stain while veneer will not absorb as much. Choosing the right wood makes sure your project becomes all that you planned.

TIP! Get a good handle on the types of woods you are using and their characteristics. Woods can differ substantially.

Dry fit your wood before using glue. It won’t be easy to adjust things as necessary if you’ve already applied the glue. Doing a dry-fit gives you a chance to see how everything will go together when you apply glue.

Whenever you work with a saw, make sure that the blade is in tip top shape before you start. Dull blades can make it hard to do as much sawing as you want. This can cause costly mistakes in your project. Checking your saw blades before hand is a lot easier than losing money and time.

TIP! Ensure that you are wearing the right protection for your ears. The machinery used in woodworking is noisy.

Before sawing, ensure that the blade is in top condition. If you allow a saw blade to become dull, you will have a tough time sawing with it. It will also make you make more mistakes that could end up costing you money depending on the wood you’re working with.

Always make sure your work area has amply lighting. Woodworking requires a degree of accuracy. Also, you’re going to be using tools that are sharp and are used to get your wood cut properly. Working with wood requires good lighting so you do the job right and stay safe.

TIP! If you’re getting into woodworking, find others who are interested in your same hobby. Woodworking shops tend not to have Internet access.

Choose the correct nails when starting a project. If the nail is too large, you could end up with split wood. Small nails won’t give a good bond. Always try to pick the right size nail for your job.

When you are sanding, do not apply a lot of pressure. Pressure can make the surface uneven. If you use sand paper of the correct grit, you should not need to apply a lot of force. Just gently sand in a circular motion.

TIP! Make sure that your wood shop has adequate lighting. Whenever you are working with wood, you need bright light.

Do you sometimes find a screw that needs tightening, but is in an awkward place where you can’t reach with the screwdriver and your hand? Head to your toolbox. Just grab a 12-point socket set. Use the socket to place on a screwdriver, and then attach it to a ratchet.

A drafting square gives much needed accuracy to smaller cuts. It can be hard to accurately measure wood from two to three feet. Carpenter squares need to be affixed to an edge, and the squares used for drywall are notoriously inaccurate. Try instead picking up a drafting square from an arts and crafts store. They are easier to work with and more accurate.

TIP! Always check your measurements a couple of times. Measure three times if your materials are costly! Poor measuring is typically where the most expensive errors happen.

Wear sturdy footwear anytime you are working with wood. There are a number of hazards in your working space that you could inadvertently stand on, such as tools or nails. You want to protect your feet from getting injured if you accidentally step on a nail or kick something heavy. Your footwear should make it safe for you to walk around.

Prior to staining, make sure to get the wood ready. A good way to accomplish this is to use wood conditioners. They soak the grain and allow it to stain evenly. After you add the stain, use a rag to get rid of any excess that is on the wood.

TIP! Think about potential changes when you plan substantial projects. For instance, if a shed building project is being considered, is electricity something you may want in the future? If that is the case, make sure that you have enough room for switches and wires, in addition to room for good lighting.

Do not become too much of a perfectionist with your tape measures. Use story sticks and slowly move to cuts. Cutting on your scrap wood first will be a great idea so you can test a fitting out. Planning out a variety of cuts for your project will help prevent mental boredom.

Be sure you purchase the best tools you can. Cheap tools will easily break, causing you a lot of frustration. The cost of a good tool is worth it, thanks to lower costs due to replacing damaged wood or having to take time off for injuries. As a result, you will actually save money because you will not have to constantly replace your tools.

TIP! When you use a fly cutter for a project, know that it is dangerous. Paint the tips of the arm and the bit with fluorescent paint so that you can see them easier.

Use recycled wood when available. Some woodworking shops discard useful scraps. Home improvement centers and flooring stores often discard unused wood. Use this to your advantage when looking for wood for projects. You will save on materials as well.

When chiseling, your movements should be away from the body. You never know when the chisel can slip and stab you in the hand which is holding the wood. This rule applies to any tool that you may be using, as almost everyone of them can hurt you in one way or another.

TIP! Place power cords very high over your head in your workshop. Hanging sockets and those mounted on poles are the best places to plug tools in.

Having a couple of beers when you are working on a project may seem like a good idea sometimes. This is not a good idea and can impair your judgement. Avoid drinking alcohol while working around power tools. Illegal and prescription drugs should also be avoided when working with woods.

Buy a Shop Vac to easily clean up after a project. This will take care of all dust and small wood waste. Brush your power tools off by using heavy duty dust brushes. Use the Shop Vac to pick up residual dust.

TIP! When clamping components together, utilize small, 1/4 inch wood scraps in between the project piece and the clamp itself. The last thing you want to mar your project is teethmarks from clamping.

Put your skills in woodworking to work in your yard. You can build a great deck or a bird feeder. The birds that this attracts will help you to keep insects out of your yard so you can be more relaxed outside. If you are a woodworking professional, try displaying your work to clients by meeting them on your deck.

Create a pilot hole before putting a screw into the wood. If you attempt to put the screw in first, it is likely to spin out and thereby damage the wood. If a drill is not available, you can carefully use a hammer and the screw to make a small hole.

TIP! Getting into woodworking doesn’t mean you need to spend a ton on tools. Often you can rent the most popular ones from a home improvement store.

There are several important hand tools you need before starting a woodworking project for the first time. The first tool you get needs to be a hammer. Choose a claw hammer for the best results. When choosing a hammer, opt for a hammer that feels comfortable in your hand. It should not be excessively heavy.

If you are creating a large piece and need to clamp the wood together so the glue sets, you’ll need a large clamp. If you don’t have any in hand, consider buying a pipe clamp. Ask the hardware staff to cut your pipe and to thread it, then you’ll be golden.


Woodworking is a unique and fascinating form of art. Hopefully, you have learned something here that you can use in your shop. From building a table to whittling a toy, today is the day to start your next project. You won’t know what you can do until you try!

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