Woodworking Competition Next Week! Any advise?

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Forum topic by KylesWoodworking posted 01-13-2011 05:38 AM 1193 views 0 times favorited 20 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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280 posts in 2114 days

01-13-2011 05:38 AM

Topic tags/keywords: question laminating drawer advise

I am 16 years old and I was the first person chosen by my woodshop teacher to be in a woodworking competition called Skills USA in Wilkes-Barre, PA next week. For the competition, I have to build a drawer (not sure the details of the drawer, but I’ve done from dados to dovetails) and I also have to laminate a countertop and install a sink. I am more worried about the countertop and sink because I’ve used formica before to laminate a counter but I’m not an expert at it. I also don’t have much experience installing a sink, I don’t have to do any plumbing, I just have to cut out the countertop for a sink and install into the counter. But I would like to know if any of you have advice for me.


20 replies so far

View Delta356's profile


463 posts in 2276 days

#1 posted 01-13-2011 05:53 AM

Mt advise to you is not say you can’t do it, but say you can. To me what there asking for the competition is pretty simple. Just take your time and enjoy yourself.
Watching This OLD House for ever I have learned installing a sink is easy. Just use the company’s template and trace it and take a jig saw and cut on the line.

Good Luck, and most important have fun.

Thanks, Michael Frey
Portland, OR


View TJ65's profile


1358 posts in 2471 days

#2 posted 01-13-2011 06:38 AM

I agree with Michael, Dont think you cant do it, as you can. Just put all you have into it. Head down rear end up and just go for it. You will surprise yourself at just what you are capable of. Your teacher would not have chosen you if they thought that you couldn’t do it.
Good luck

-- Theresa,

View mattjkafka's profile


5 posts in 2113 days

#3 posted 01-13-2011 07:06 PM

for the sink if its new out of the box they usually come with a template. So when i just did mine i used my router and a sharp flush trim bit to cut out for the sink

View canadianchips's profile


2310 posts in 2419 days

#4 posted 01-13-2011 07:18 PM

Just take your time, do the job you know you can do. Don’t be flustered watching others, focus on your own. The greatest mistake I see at these skils competition is participants get excited and make silly mistakes.
If you were chosen your instructor knows you can do it. I prefer using jig saw to cut the template hole, I put masking tape on top side so saw doesn’t mark formica, stay inside the line and the sink will fit.
GOOD LUCK in the competition.

-- "My mission in life - make everyone smile !"

View Dennis Fletcher's profile

Dennis Fletcher

467 posts in 2476 days

#5 posted 01-13-2011 07:25 PM

I have to say, I am partial to using a trim router with a sharp bit to cut out the sink, but, if that isn’t an option, the jigsaw works great.

I often use my skillsaw to cut the longer, straight lines, then use the jigsaw to connect the cuts. It seems to work pretty well.

Also, make sure to follow the competitions directions to the tee. Double check yourself, don’t cut until you know that is where you need to cut.

Ask your shop teacher to let you do a countertop and sink install this week. Tomorrow, if possible.

--, Making design and application one. †

View Nomad62's profile


726 posts in 2380 days

#6 posted 01-13-2011 11:41 PM

Go to a “how to” website and learn how the task is done by experienced people. Just type in the search line of your puter “how to put in a sink”. It is nothing too difficult, you just need to learn the steps just like anything else. When I was 17 I was chosen by my auto shop teacher to go to the local GM training center for a competition between local high schools on their new diesel engine and the supporting systems (yeah, ok, I’m old lol). I read the books like mad, learned everything I could…still ended up 2nd, but man what an experience. Look at it this way… if you have the basics down you will be more able to learn the smaller yet just as important info that a less informed person may not, allowing you to excel instead of just “passing”. Best of luck… and when you’re done come on by my place and put me in a nice sink!

-- Power tools put us ahead of the monkeys

View Bertha's profile


12989 posts in 2115 days

#7 posted 01-14-2011 12:04 AM

If you’ve dovetailed a drawer, you can install a sink in your sleep. Just watch out for those sharp mounting clips, they beat me up on my last sink install. Take thiis as an opportunity to showcase your hard-earned skills & have a lot of fun. I’m jealous of your opportunity and I’ll be rooting for you!

-- My dad and I built a 65 chev pick up.I killed trannys in that thing for some reason-Hog

View sikrap's profile


1121 posts in 2781 days

#8 posted 01-14-2011 12:15 AM

As posted above, installing a sink is VERY easy. I would cut the opening n the counter top (with a jigsaw) before I apply the laminate and then, after the laminate is applied, cut the hole in that with a trim router and flushcut bit. I say this is easy because I’ve done it and I’m by NO means an accomplished woodworker. One piece of advice I can offer is to bring a rolling pin just in case they don’t provide a laminate roller. Good Luck!!

-- Dave, Colonie, NY

View KylesWoodworking's profile


280 posts in 2114 days

#9 posted 01-14-2011 12:36 AM

Thank you everyone for all the advise so far, I will keep you posted and tell you how I did next Wed, 1-19-11.


View john's profile


2362 posts in 3803 days

#10 posted 01-14-2011 02:09 AM

Kyle add http:// . in your links below and then they will work when you click on them . For example

-- John in Belgrave (Website) ,

View KylesWoodworking's profile


280 posts in 2114 days

#11 posted 01-14-2011 02:48 AM

Thanks for the tip John, I’m going to change it know.


View KylesWoodworking's profile


280 posts in 2114 days

#12 posted 01-19-2011 11:14 PM

Sorry guys, the competition was postponed due to snow and ice (again)... Will tell you how I did whenever the competition is….


View MsDebbieP's profile


18615 posts in 3582 days

#13 posted 01-19-2011 11:41 PM

ooooooooh and I was all excited to find out how it went.

more time to practice that sink install??? :)

Congratulations on the honour!

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (

View KylesWoodworking's profile


280 posts in 2114 days

#14 posted 01-19-2011 11:49 PM

I guess you will have to hold that excitement in for another week or so. I was practicing today as a matter of fact.
Thanks for the comment,


View MsDebbieP's profile


18615 posts in 3582 days

#15 posted 01-20-2011 01:36 AM

this is like waiting for Christmas morning to arrive!!

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (

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