Workbench Weekly eTip
 

Archive for October, 2008

Pump Up the Volume to Locate Circuit Breakers

Friday, October 31st, 2008

If you need to shut off power to a specific outlet, an easy way to find the breaker in question is to plug a radio into the outlet, and then crank up the volume. Now flip breakers off one at a time until the radio goes off.

Once you find which breaker controls the outlet, mark the breaker number inside the outlet cover (Photo). Also mark the breaker box with the outlets or room each breaker controls.

Have a nice weekend,

Wyatt Myers

Editor, Workbench

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (15 votes, average: 4.67 out of 5)
Loading ... Loading ...


Short on Clamps? Try Tape

Friday, October 24th, 2008

If you have a lot of wood edging to glue to plywood panels (or any other small parts and pieces), but you don’t have a lot of clamps, don’t worry. Just use a couple of clamps to position each piece, and then use electrical tape to provide the holding power.

To do this, just affix one end of the tape to the edging, pull the other end tight, and then stick it to the face of the plywood. Electrical tape is fairly elastic, so you can stretch it tightly across the workpiece to “clamp” the edging in place.

Have a nice weekend,

Wyatt Myers
Editor, Workbench

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (18 votes, average: 3.67 out of 5)
Loading ... Loading ...


Score Plywood First to Eliminate Chipout

Friday, October 17th, 2008

To prevent chipout when cutting plywood on a table saw, the best practice is to cut it with the “good” side facing up. But if you ever have a plywood project where both sides of the plywood are visible, then it’s worth taking the extra step to protect both faces of the plywood from chipping out and splintering.

A Scoring Pass — That extra step is making a shallow “scoring” pass with the blade raised just enough to cut through the veneer layer (Illustration, below).


Full Cut — After that pass, raise the blade to make a full-thickness cut, and then make another pass. This two-pass method will ensure a finished plywood part with two chipout-free faces.

Have a nice weekend,

Wyatt Myers
Editor, Workbench

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (14 votes, average: 4.64 out of 5)
Loading ... Loading ...


Quick & Easy Crosscut Sled

Friday, October 10th, 2008

A sled is an invaluable accessory for crosscutting wide panels safely and accurately on the table saw. Here’s one that’s effective and easy to build.

Sled Anatomy — The sled consists of a large base to hold the panel, a fence that supports the back edge, and a runner that guides the sled in the miter-gauge slot (below).

Sled Construction — To build the sled, cut the base to size from 3?4″ plywood. Then cut the fence to size, and cut a rabbet in the lower front edge for dust relief. Now align the fence with the back edge of the base, and glue and clamp it in place.

To make the runner, simply plane hardwood stock to thickness, rip it to rough width, and sand it so it slides smoothly in the miter-gauge slot. Then screw it to the base, square with the end.

You now have a sled capable of cutting wide panels to length. If the panel is also long, you’ll want to add side support (Photo, top).

Have a nice weekend,

Wyatt Myers
Editor, Workbench

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (18 votes, average: 3.61 out of 5)
Loading ... Loading ...


Measuring Tips & Tricks

Friday, October 3rd, 2008

The most common way to measure the inside dimensions of a cabinet or box is to butt the tape’s hook against one side, then bend the tape at the opposite side (Photo, below). But the stiff tape never reaches fully into the corner, meaning you have to estimate the exact length.

To get the length exactly right, stop short of the bend in the tape, and make a mark aligned with a whole inch. Then, measure back from the opposite side to that mark, and add the two together (Inset Photo).

Use a Story Stick — You can also take the tape measure out of the equation completely by using a “story stick.” It’s made up of two 1″-wide strips of 1?4″ hardboard. They can be made any length. A 45° bevel on the outside end of each strip creates a fine point that yields better accuracy.

To use the story stick, lay the strips in the opening you need to measure. Butt the ends against the sides, and then clip the strips together (Photo, bottom). Then you can just measure the overall length of the story stick to determine the inside measurement exactly.

Have a nice weekend,

Wyatt Myers
Editor, Workbench

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (18 votes, average: 4.39 out of 5)
Loading ... Loading ...




Subscribe to Workbench eTips

Archives

© 2014 August Home Publishing Company
Magazine Customer Service - Privacy Policy - Terms of Use - Contact Us
Entries (RSS)