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First Tip, do not hit your Thumb with a hammer, hurts ( :
- If you do not want to split a board you are nailing, dull the point of the nail or drill a pilot hole first.
- For Finish work you should use a 16 oz hammer, smooth head.
- For Rough Framing use a 22 to 32 oz hammer, with a waffle head.
- Make sure you put the crowns of the lumber the same, up or out depending on if they are for a wall or floor,
the crown is, if you look down the edge of a board it will curve ( , that's the crown.
- Save your straightest wall studs, for where your Cabinets and Counter Tops will be and make double sure those
inside and outside corners are square.
- Put a backing board in the wall where your door handles will hit, saves patching a hole when the door stops no longer work.
- Put backing boards on each side of your Windows for screwing on those Curtain Rods.
- Put backing boards in the closet walls for future shelves.
- When you nail on Vinyl Siding, nail it loose, it expands and contracts a lot, you should be able to slide it
back and forth. Also do not cut it tight to fit, leave at least a 1/4" on each end of one single piece.
- If you use Chip Board ( Blandex ) for Roof or Wall sheathing, use the clips on the Roof and on Walls an 1/8"
space or the width of a 16 penny nail, you have to leave that 1/8" spacing for it to expand and contract. Blandex for Sheathing
is more economical then Plywood, you can use it in any direction, plywood only one direction.
- Use 8 penny nails for sheathing and 16 penny nails for Framing. For sub floors and stair treads I used Galvanized
nails, once nailed in place it is very hard to pull them out, no squeaky floors or steps.
- If you are going to do a lot of framing, buy a 25 ft measuring tape, helps when you Layout the studs and walls.
- When I laid out the studs, I used a single line to mark where the center of the stud would go ( 16" on
center ) and a line with an X, where the stud and jack stud would be placed for the Window and Door openings.
When you step on the stud it will lay square with the floor, tap it with your hammer until the line
is centered on the stud, nail it, the center line mark makes laying out faster then the line X line way, you just put
a line at every 16 inches, center marks= 16-32-48-etc. For Truss or Rafter lay out I used the |X| method, which means
the X is the center and each line is the outside of the stud, total 1 1/2" in between the lines, or use the narrow side
of a framing square, which is 1 1/2" wide.
- New: Those Stairs looking old, I made mine look like Oak Stairs, I took some 1/4" Oak plywood, cut it to fit the tread, nailed it down to the
tread with small galvinized finish nails (they hold better), making sure the plywood was flush to the edge of the riser, then I took some
2" x 3/4" solid Oak and cut it to fit across the front of the riser (the Nosing) and flush with the top of the 1/4" Oak plywood,
drilled holes and nailed them in place using 16p galvanized finish nails, I sanded the top outside edge of the Nosing, just to round it off. Next I took some
more 1/4" Oak plywood and riped it down to fit inbetween the 2" Oak nosing and the tread below it, nailed that in place with small
galanized finish nails, set all the nails and puttied them. On the sides of the stairs that were facing our living room, I trimmed them out
with 1" x 3/4" stripes of Oak, nailed in place with galvanized finish nails. Then I put a gloss polyurethane made for floors on all the
Wood Working Tips
- After clamping boards together, do not wipe the glue off, let it dry first, then use a scraper to remove it.
If you wipe it off with a rag it will soak into the pours of the wood and your stain will not penetrate.
- If you do wipe it off, use a damp cloth and clean it good.
- When staining soft woods, use a prestainer product so your stain goes on even, I have wiped it down with mineral
spirits and have gotten the same results, costs less then the prestainer too!
- Nailing into a Hard Wood, use one of the finish nails to drill the pilot hole.
- Squeak in the floor, if you have Carpet, use a 16p galvanized finish nail, find the floor joist ( I use a Stud
Finder laid on top of card board ) and nail through the carpet, use a nail set or another nail to set it , no more squeak.
- When filling in nail holes with colored putty, do it after the varnish has been applied and use a damp rag
to wipe off the excess.
- Door Sagging on the hinge side, take out the middle screw in the hinge where you need to pull it in and screw
in a 3 1/2" drywall screw, careful this will really pull it in if there are no shims between the Jamb and Jack stud.
- Need to hang a Picture but no stud, angle a small pan headed nail down into the Drywall, if you pull it out
later use some Vinyl Spackling to patch it.
- After you paint a room take off a light cover and put a piece of masking tape on it, then write down what paint
you used, and a dab of paint, you can have the paint store use their computer matcher to match the paint later.
- After you paint a room, fill a baby Jar with paint and save it, air in a can is what ruins the paint. Then
you will have it to touch up that nail hole.
- Piece of furniture cracked or broken, no clamps, put some wood glue on it and squeeze it tight and wrap Tape
around it, you just need the glue to squeeze out a little, if you clamp it to tight, you actually squeeze all the
glue out and get a poor bond.
- If you use Pine to build a Cabinet, size the Doors to fit snug in the width of the Door, the pine will shrink
in the width but not the length.
- To fill the nail holes, mix up some fine saw dust from the wood you are cutting with some glue and fill the
holes with that, then sand it down when it is dry, don't use to much glue or it will not stain properly or you can
put a little glue in the hole and put the saw dust on top of it, then push it down into the hole.
- An Orbital Sander does the best job for sanding wood, use the Belt Sander sparingly.
- You can make fancy moldings by buying different kinds of Trim, Base and layer them.
- Do not sand hardwood really smooth before you stain them, I sanded some Birch once and got it glassy smooth,
but then when I went to apply the stain the wood would not take the stain, couldn't figure out why, called a friend
that owned a large Cabinet Shop and asked him, first thing he said was, Mike, you sanded it really smooth didn't
ya, I said Ya! He then told me to go back over it and rough up the surface, the stain took, you close the pores
of the wood if you finish sand it before you stain. Sand it so it is relatively smooth, then stain and then apply
your Sanding Sealer, then start the really fine sanding.
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