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Reply by MrFid

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Posted on Transitioning from "rough builder" to "woodworker"?

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MrFid

837 posts in 1654 days


#1 posted 02-08-2016 06:58 PM



Honestly, the biggest thing that makes a huge difference? Get rid of measurements. Use a tape measure for rough lengths in the beginning, and then get rid of it once you start cutting. Measure everything off of other pieces. Make sure all your cuts are the same by setting up fences for batch cuts rather than making marks off of a tape measure. Cut joinery by referencing off of the pieces that will be connected. Measurements are only a way to mess it up.

- jmartel

Really good advice here. Use a measuring tape for the first cut, then work off that for all the others. Other tips:

1. Make a crosscut sled and use the five cut method to square it up. See the wood whisperer for a good video on crosscut sleds and that method.

2. Use stops on your sled (and other tools; miter saw…) to cut every piece to precisely the same length, rather than measuring and marking.

3. Get some handplanes, and learn to sharpen and use them. I use a block plane, #4, and #5 the most for my work. Depends on what you’re doing.

4. Do not trust that the wood you buy from Home Depot or anyplace is flat, straight, and square. This is a big one, especially if you’re working in pine. The pine from big box stores is never dependable, especially the longer lengths. The errors are more compounded over long lengths.

5. Watch some TV shows (Rough Cut, Woodsmith Shop, etc.) Although they make it look very easy to complete a project in a half hour, they do show some good techniques.

-- Bailey F - Eastern Mass.


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