Posts tagged wood

How to make a Workbench with the Kreg Jig!


Kreg Jig Pocket Hole Jig

IF you want a nice workbench, you can make one yourself with just a few boards and some basic tools, inlcuding the Kreg Pocket Hole Jig System. Kreg has put together a great video series and here is episode one of how to make a workbench with the kreg jig. It’s a simple plan you can do in an afternoon or adapt to your own project. The video will give you ideas on how to use your kreg jig to build other tables and furniture.

DIY Book Review: American Boys Handy Book


Do you own a copy of The American Boy’s Handy Book? If not, I’d recommend putting it on your wish list.

Here’s a classic DIY guide geared towards projects children (with adult supervision) to teens and adults can all enjoy. If you’ve never heard of the American Boy’s Handy Book, you should definately check it out. The book includes a wide range of DIY projects, most of which are far more sophisticated DIY projects than you’d find in a Cub Scout guidebook. The projects in the book range from the fantasy (Mark Twain raft) to the questionable (DIY fireworks, various projectile devices, etc.) to the totally awesome (DIY boat building, wind skates, and so much more!).

A must for the ‘do it yourself’ person in your life.

Rating: 4.8/5.0

DIY Tool Review: Kreg Jig Jr. Pocket Hole Jig


Today we’re looking at another tool I’ve recently purcahsed for DIY projects around the house, the Kreg Jig Jr. — the slightly smaller and less expensive cousin to the full Kreg Jig Master System. I saw the ads on TV and had to try it for myself.

Both systems are made by Kreg and offer the ability to drill precision pocket holes to join boards. Pocket hole joints make rigid connections between perpendicular boards, well suited to tables, drawers and other framing applications. The Master System more easily mounts for repeated use and can be adjusted to accommodate larger board thicknesses.

The Pros: Works just like they say! Simple to use. All measurements are done for you! And everything you need (except a power drill) is included, so you can quickly adjust the jig and make your drills. Works very well with only minimal time looking through the users guide.

The Cons: The Kreg Jig Jr. is small and can sometimes be difficult to clamp in place or annoying to unclaim and reclamp between uses — where the master system version would clearly have the advantage.

The Review: 4.8/5.0 Works exactly as they say in the ads. It makes it simple to get professional looking joints that hold together tightly. I was able to quickly repair an Ikea dresser drawer that had started to come apart with just a couple simple holes and screws, set precisely to the right angle and depths by the Kreg Jig. Get the professionally finished appearance most do-it-yourself folk strive to achieve–without much real work!

Can’t wait to use this for another project! Any suggestions? Have you used the Kreg Jig? What did you think?

Basic Tools for Woodworking DIY Projects


Let’s take a moment to talk about tools you’ll want when you are working on building or woodworking do-it-yourself projects.

You probably already have some things:

  • hammer
  • screw drivers, phillips and flat head
  • basic saw
  • pliers, a must for so many projects
  • clamps – I recommend the kind you can squeeze to tighten such as Irwin Quick-Grip Bar Clamps
  • Tape measure or yard stick
  • pipe wrench and/or crescent wrench
  • T-square
  • level
  • sandpaper

But you’ll quickly discover you need other tools and particularly with wood construction some power tools will serve you well. One set that’s comprehensive and has done well for me personally is the: Factory-Reconditioned Ryobi ZRP841 18-Volt Super Combo Kit
At only $129 and free shipping on Amazon, it’s a deal thats tough to beat. With 18V interchangeable batteries, you’ll have all the power you’ll need to cut and drill and drive virtually any project you need, with driver/drill, circ saw, sawz-all style reciprocating saw, and flashlight.

Other items to think about:

  • Random orbit sander
  • Dremel or similar rotary tool
  • Staple gun
  • Jig saw

When selecting tools it’s important to take quality into account. While the cheapest tool may be perfectly fine for one or two projects, a higher quality tool may provide years of service. Be sure to factor how often you plan to use a tool and your expectations of tool longevity into your value calculations on a new tool purpose. For larger or single-project-use tools, consider borrowing from a friend or renting from a local home warehouse.

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