Saturday, October 24, 2015

What’s in Your Pocket? A Mini Kreg Pocket Screw Jig

Kreg MKJKIT Mini Jig Kit

There are many ways to create strong, secure joint in wood; but only the more difficult methods leave a finished surface unscathed. A glued joints doesn’t hold up with constant stress, doweled or biscuit joints take time and patience, and so do countersunk screws with wood plugs. Is there another solution?

Yep, there’s the pocket screw. To use pocket screws, you come in from the back side of the finished board at a shallow angle (about 15°) so that the screw exits near the center of the edge. Screws naturally draw two pieces together without additional clamping, and they hold better than nails or glue. You'll find pocket screws used to build high-end furniture as well as DIY projects.

The hardest part of using pocket screws, however, is getting the holes located at the right entry point and set at the correct angle. Good carpenters use jigs when they’re repeating a task; and if that is drilling pocket screw holes, they probably use pocket screw jigs. Mine’s a Mini Kreg Jig Kit MKJKIT, a simple tool that, when used correctly, lets me todrill holes for pocket screws in ½”, ¾”, or 1½” stock. The jig kit includes 3 pieces:

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

This Stud Finder from Stanley Conforms to the KISS Principle

Stanley 47-400 Magnetic Stud Finder

Included in the wisdom my Dad taught me decades ago is what’s known as the “KISS principle.” That’s the acronym for “Keep It Simple, Stupid,” advice I came to remember the last time I shelled out double-digit dollars for some bright-colored, battery-driven stud finder, which – of course – was a waste of hard-earned cash.