Woodworking Projects

woodworking projects

Purchase Or Make Woodworking Projects Jigs

Woodworking jigs are an essential part of any woodworking projects. They are great for repetitive tasks in many projects and make the more difficult much easier and faster to complete. Jigs are not expensive, but making them from scrap wood is even cheaper.

There are a variety of jigs available, and the type you need depends on the woodworking projects you like to do.

Dovetail jigs help make dovetail joints accurately and can be purchased fairly inexpensively. Of course, you can make your own dovetail jig. Templates are available on the internet or in most stores selling woodworking projects supplies.

If you plan to make your own jigs, you will want to pick up a dovetail saw or a dovetail bit for your router. Many templates allow you to make up to twelve different sizes of jigs.

Templates also allow you to make a variety of spaced or fixed dovetails for a wide range of products, such as cabinets and drawers. Some kits come with bits and templates which can save you money as compared to purchasing them separately.

Dovetail saws are great tools for cutting dovetails and fine joints for other woodworking projects. Blades on dovetail saws are thicker than on others and provide greater accuracy when cutting joints.

It is important to purchase quality tools for cutting tight joints. Fourteen to seventeen points per inch is a good guideline to look for in quality saws.

Another type is the dowel jig which is used to make consistent, quality dowels. A self centering jig provides better accuracy for those times when you are using thick wood. Sizes of dowel jigs vary from one-quarter to one-half inch.

Especially if you are not sure what size you need, purchasing a complete kit with several hundred dowels in a variety of sizes might be a good choice.

Kreg jigs are a great jig for cabinet making. Accurately positioned slides are necessary for the drawer to move smoothly. A benefit of kreg jigs is that you do not need to measure and mark the spaces for the drawer slides.

Kreg jigs make it much easier to mount drawer slides, especially for its low cost and versatility.

Making your own jigs saves money, particularly in supplies.

You can just use scrap pieces of plywood. If you plan to re-use the jigs, you may want to use a stronger wood. Otherwise, since jigs are only used for one woodworking projects, there is little reason to spend a lot on materials.

Plywood should suffice. Instructions on making jigs can be found in magazines or books or on the internet. You can photocopy or print the instructions for future use.

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What To Look For When Buying Lumber

lumberWhether you are building a deck or you are simply creating something interesting for your home, one of the first things that you need to think about is your lumber.

Buying good lumber is essential for any project, and you will discover that there are a few things that you need to consider.

Take a moment to learn how to select lumber for a project that is going to last.

Avoiding Heartwood

Heartwood is the wood from the center of the tree, and overall, it is more dense than the layers outside it.

While this sounds like it is an ideal candidate for a project that requires very tough wood, you will find that there is one big disadvantage.

The problem is that heartwood does not take pressure treating as well as the wood on the outside. Without pressure treating or with uneven pressure treating, you may find yourself with wood that is much more prone towards splitting.

Knotholes

When you are looking at wood, you will see whorls in the wood known as knotholes. Some people hate them, others love them, but they are generally inescapable when you are looking at creating the right kind of look for your home.

The thing to remember about knotholes is that ones that are in the wood tight will be difficult to budge, and that is preferred.

However, if there is a dark ring around the knothole or if it is loose, there is a better than average chance it will fall out, leaving you with a hole in your lumber.

Shake

Shake refers to a quality where boards are missing chunks of wood between the growth rings. If at all possible, avoid this because it creates a problem with the board’s structural integrity.

Take a moment to examine the boards in front of you and to make sure that there is no shake present. Some boards with shake will be missing whole triangular segments, while others simply have a looseness to them that is undesirable.

Sight Along the Board

Some people don’t mind working with a bit of a bow, but the truth of the matter is that you always want your board to be as straight as possible.

Put your eye to the edge of the board and look for any dips and curves. If you see a wave in the board, you will find that you should pick another. Remember that the more severe the bow is, the more difficult the board will be to work with.

When you want to make sure that you are putting in your effort and producing something worthwhile, take a moment to consider how the wood you are working with will affect that.

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How to Personalise Your Walking Stick

walking stickFirstly and the most obvious is adding an engraved plaque on to a walking stick.

Some walking sticks have a silver or brass collar which can be engraved or a larger area such as the handle.

There is enough space on a collar to add a name, some initials or a date.

If the collar is too difficult to engrave, then a brass plaque can be engraved and then tacked on to the shaft.

 

A plaque allows a bit more space so you could add a name and a date or a message or a short saying. The plaques themselves can be silver plated or brass in an oval shape or indeed any shape that can be bent around the shaft. You can also use pennies.

Many people like to add badges to their walking stick. The badges again are bent around the shaft of the stick and then either glued or tacked on.

Badges available on the market today include British counties, country flags, clubs, football clubs, dogs, cats, horses, military badges and celtic or other symbols.

You can also find famous people, places and other animals. The pewter badges are very attractive and the other badges are usually very colourful and add considerable character to your cane.

Straps and ribbons and other things that can be tied around the shaft also offer some individuality to a walking stick, as do whistles. You can add a dog whistle for calling your pet or a duck call.

Whistles can be tied around the shaft or they are sometimes incorporated in to the handle. For example a thumb stick with a whistle carved into one of the tines of the V.

The other way to personalise a walking stick is to have the handle carved from wood or made out of resin to your particular design, such as your pet’s head.

You could have a black labrador head with your pet’s name painted onto the collar or something like that. Resin is a fantastic material that when poured into a mould and then painted can be made to look just like the real thing.

Pyrography is another lovely art that produces a great effect on a walking stick. Pyrography is when a design is burnt into the wood with a special pen that looks rather like a soldering iron.

You can achieve some detailed and beautiful results with this method.

I hope you feel inspired now to do something with your walking stick to personalise it and make it your own.

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What Is The Best Drill Press For Woodworking?

drill pressWhether you want to drill hinge cup recesses, cut batches of wood plugs, hog out a mortise or countersink pilot holes a drill press can do all the work for you.

A drill press is versatile and accurate and it’s a tool every woodworking workshop should have.

Before purchasing a press drill to use for any of your projects there are factors that you need to consider first.

After testing a couple of models I’ll argue that choosing the best Drill Press is based on the following factors:

Technical specifications

Technical aspects of any drill are rated based on motor power, drill speed, quill travel (drilling depth) and the swing (working column height).

Working with a compact drill press with a 8 inch swing, five speeds, a spindle travel of 2 inches, 1/3 horsepower 6 1/2 workable, 45 degrees tilting power can be great but there is something more than that which you might need for a professional workshop.

I personally prefer working with a drill pres that has a 13 to 15 inches swing, a table size of 13x 10 inches, a 3/4 horsepower, 16 speeds and a range (preferably 200 to 3600 rpm) because it allows me to get the precise selection I need when handling different wood materials and drill bit sizes.

Also working a drill with such high technical ability delivers an impressive work in the workshop hence more ideal for professional work

Build quality

When you discover your drill press is vibrating too much, then it is likely to create inaccuracies. The drill press could be dangerous as well.

Right from its top to the bottom, the build up quality should be proper for use in the workshop. Based on experience I would recommend a brand with a cast iron base, table and even drill heads.

A 150 pounds drill with extreme rigidity, plenty of power, little run-out of the chuck (with the help of high quality ball bearings on the spindle) can be great for any hobby wood worker to a professional workshop wood worker.

Features

Right from the precision laser slighting to the depth gauges, there are many features that differentiate a top drill presses from also-rans.

An ideal press drill should have a fairly standard angle gauge, micro-adjustable and independent depth stop and depth scale, twin laser system for more accuracy and a self-tensioning system for delivery of more power.

Price

With great difference in the technical specification and build up quality, the price of the different prices might vary largely.

If you are planning to buy a versatile high quality that will deliver an impressive work, you should go for highly priced drill presses. Top performing are rigid, more durable and have greater capacities.

Chuck quality

Chuck quality might vary from one machine to another but it is something that matters big time. Find a chuck that can operate smoothly over its (whole) range of adjustment.

Also, getting some additional information on runout -in the spindle & chuck assembly-can help you know how much a bit wobbles as it turns. The less the runout, the better.

Conclusion

When selecting the best brand of drill press in the market, find one with superb performance or functionality, one with the best value of money and a press drill that has outstanding features as well as technical specifications.

You can compare the available brands online or locally to find out the ones performance greatly and going at reasonably lower prices

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Fun And Easy Home Woodworking Projects

Woodworking Projects

Have a Saturday with nothing to do? Grab the kids and head out to the garage to make something great!

Before you get started, it is important to be safe. Make sure you all have on shoes for one thing, preferably with closed in toes, that way if something gets dropped, no one has a broken toe.

You also need some safety glasses, an apron to cover your clothes and maybe some gloves to protect against splinters.

Once you have all that covered, remember that power tools should only be used by adults and that saws of any kind should not be used without adult supervision. Safety first!

After you have assembled all you will need, it is time to decide which project to work on. What to build on this, cloudy Saturday morning? I have a few suggestions for you.

Birdhouse

Building a birdhouse is a great idea for a wood working project. There are many web sites that give you plans for what size to cut the wood, how much glue to use and so forth.

You can even specify which type of bird you build the house for, it could be for a blue bird or a purple martin, or just a general bird house that will attract sparrows and wrens.

Once the actual birdhouse is built, you can paint it in colorful colors, toll paint designs or it or just leave it in its natural state, I am sure the birds won’t mind no matter what you decide.

This project will make a great gift, you could crank out several, paint them in colorful colors and give them as Christmas gifts. Everyone loves a gift that you make yourself and the cost will be minimal.

Window Box

This is a home improvement project! Window boxes beautify the outside of your home, fill it full of beautiful flowers and hang it on the window out in front of your home and suddenly, you have made your home more beautiful.

You can paint the box to match your home or use a fantastic contrasting color to make it stand out. It can be toll painted or decoupage it for some interest.

This project would make a great gift, or you can make enough to place a window box at every single window in your house.

Storage Crate

This is a practical wood working project. Who doesn’t need something lovely to store stuff in? You can store books, record albums, use it in the kitchen for potatoes, use it in the bathroom for your towels.

There are too many uses for a storage crate to even mention. You can paint it, toll paint it, decoupage it, the possibilities are endless.

It is a four side and a bottom project and would be fun to surprise someone with one of these boxes as a gift, it could be customized for the person, and this would make a wonderful gift.

Simple table

This is a great project, we all could use an extra table. On the patio or deck, bedside or den, who couldn’t use a neat crossed or straight leg table.

This one can be painted (make sure to use some weather proof paint if you are using it outdoors), toll paint this one to make it beautiful and use it in the house. It will be a conversation piece!

Shelves

A little more complicated, still a great project. Shelves come in handy in virtually every single room of your home. Who couldn’t use some shelves?

If you are a more contemporary style, they could just be a straight shelf, but if you want to get extravagant, this one can really get fancy.

Use your miter saw and put some molding on the shelf and that will decorate it for more colonial tastes. Finish with stain and polyurethane, or paint in beautiful colors, either will be lovely or help to beautify your home.

All sorts of things can be displayed on shelves depending which room it is in. Bathrooms are great places for shelves. Books, special knick knacks, pictures and much more can be displayed.

Working with wood is a fun and interesting way to spend a Saturday or any day for that matter.

You can get your children involved or you can set up your shop to make gifts for Christmas or any other time when you need a gift.

Just think about needing to give someone a gift and merely walking out to your garage to choose one that you made yourself. That would be a nice situation.

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Amateur Desktop DIY CNC Machine for Home Use

Recently, among the craftsmen, it has become increasingly popular to use machines with CNC (computer numerical control) for use in household purposes. At the moment, almost everyone has a personal computer, desktop or laptop, which can help to control the execution of highly accurate and time-consuming routine work in the field of modeling, electronics, graphics, etc.

Why Do We Need a Desktop DIY CNC Machine?

Well, if an amateur hobbyist has a strong background in the theory and experience in the manufacture of precision mechanics and electronics, he is able to design and manufacture an amateur machine for his own purpose. But not everyone can shoulder this task. In order to produce an inexpensive amateur machine, you need a desktop DIY CNC machine. For “lazy”, a ready-mounted and well-established machine with stepper motors would be a good option.

Applications

When using the machine as a working tool, you can:

  • Drill holes (manufacture of printed circuit boards);
  • Mill on wood, plastics, particle board, MDF and similar materials;
  • Cut complex shapes from plywood parts (e.g. in modeling);
  • Engrave on all non-metal material.

When using the machine as a pen or other stylus, you can make drawings and inscriptions on various materials and objects, including paper, film, CD and DVD drives.

When using the machine as a tool head with a laser diode, you can possibly:

  • Burn printed wiring pictures in an amateur production of printed circuit boards;
  • Burn pictures, graphics and labels in a variety of materials (wood, plexiglass, plastics, leather, etc.)
  • Cut letters, inscriptions, and drawings on advertising self-adhesive film type on microporous materials of 1-6 mm thick;
  • Burn on wood, plywood photos, making burning family photos;
  • Laser engrave nameplates on plastics and metal;
  • Cut materials which are not thick into complex-shape pieces;

Recommendation

If you are in need of such a machine for Home use, I’d like to recommend the triaxial desktop DIY CNC machine. It is made of aluminum material, durable and solid. With the adjustable focal length, you can use it for wood carving and so on. The main purposes include wooden plaque engraving, laser engraving, PCB sculpture, acrylic sculpture, etc. What’s more, this machine is equipped with a constant-current driver board, which ensures stable output optical power. And there is no need of external driver board. Thus, as far as I’m concerned, this triaxial desktop DIY CNC machine would be a good option for home use.

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Get the Best Results When You’re Woodworking With Teak Wood

teak woodAre you planning to work on a heavy duty project? Then teak may just be the right kind of wood for you.

Teak is known to be a very dense hardwood which is known to be water resistant because of its high oil content, as well as tight and straight graining.

Teak is known to be very durable which is why people have been using this kind of wood for centuries in creating outdoor furniture, patios, and even boat decks.

If you’re planning to do some woodworking with teak, here are a couple of things which can help you out with your project.

Uses of Teak

Aside from boat decks and its accessories, teak can be used for any type of furniture as it can readily withstand various elements. Again, because teak resists moisture very well, you can create outdoor chairs and tables with this wood. If you’re aiming for a bigger project, you’d find that teak works well when it is used in spas or even saunas.

Varieties of Teak

When choosing teak, you should know the different varieties. Sometimes suppliers will sell “teak” varieties but the “real” one is a Southeast Asian native which can be known as tectona wood.

A lot of suppliers have teak wood that comes from Brazil under the cumaru species which has similar properties, but are entirely different.

These cumaru types are grown in plantations and can be used as flooring material. On the other hand, tectona is generally harvested from its native forests and grows as high as 120 feet and lives up to a hundred years.

Because of these differences, you might get a variety of colors for the raw wood so like all projects, try to buy your supplies from the same source to get the consistency of color that you’d like.

Woodworking with Teak

Teak has a notorious reputation when it comes to the blades and the bits. Because of this, you might want to use sharper carbide-cutting blades and bits.

In addition, you would want to keep all of your equipment free from pitch to help them cut as cleanly, and as long as possible. Another thing you can do is find blades which have a high TPI (teeth per inch) to have cleaner cuts with less waste.

Joining Teak Wood

While you can use nails, screws, and other mechanical fasteners when working on your teak projects, you can also use traditional ones like dovetails and tenon joints which can greatly enhance the wood’s beauty (and you get to show off your woodworking skills too!).

A Few Notes on Safety

Working with teak (for all varieties) will require you with extra safety measures which you don’t usually need when using common types of wood.

In addition to your typical safety gear (your hearing protection, safety goggles, and appropriate attire), you need a NIOSH – approved mask to protect yourself from dust.

Since the dust from teak can be toxic if you inhale it, you’d want a heavy-duty mask as well as proper ventilation when you do cutting and sanding on teak.

Teak Finishing

Because of its high content of naturally occurring resin and oils found in the teak’s pores, you don’t want to finish it the same way you would with other woods.

For starters, stains and the typical wood finish won’t easily adhere to the wood. When woodworking with teak, what you need is to follow a more traditional method.

You should first clean the surface and apply a generous coating of teak oil to all the surfaces which are exposed and allow it to soak as much as possible before you wipe off the excess.

Before you expose your piece to other elements, make sure you’ve allowed it to dry for a few days.

When you’re refinishing your oiled teak, first clean its surface with a spray cleaner and a non-abrasive pad.

You then clean off the residue and the resins using a denatured alcohol or an acetone before finally applying an additional teak oil coating.

As maintenance, you might need to clean and refinish your piece every now and then to make sure it’s always in pristine condition.

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