1 – Make your sanding easier by using a block
Sanding your woodwork by hand is always a bit of a chore, but with the right quality sandpaper, you’ll get results that often outshine a power sander. Try using a sanding block for faster, more efficient results. All you need is a small block of wood, which you wrap your sand paper around. It distributes sanding pressure more evenly and maintains a flatter surface than merely folding a piece of sandpaper. It is less stress on your hands, as you have a more stable item to hold, rather than a flat sheet of sandpaper. You will also find the paper does not rip as easily, and you get more use out of a single sheet, as you just rotate it around the block as you go. Sand with the grain of the wood, especially for the final grits. To remove deep scratches and stains, try angling across the grain up to about 45º for the first sanding. Before moving to the next finer grit, sand with the grain to remove all cross-grain scratches. One thing to note, however, is that if you use a Pull Saw, such as The Roamwild Multi-Pull Saw Pro, the need for sanding the edges of your wood are vastly reduced, due to its superior fine blades which leaves the wood ends with no splinters or rough edges.
2 – Know your wood’s moisture content
When working with wood, knowing the correct moisture content of each piece of wood is invaluable. If the wood is too dry, the finished product may swell or crack with the pressure of moisture creeping into it. On the other hand, if it is too moist, then the end item may shrink or warp as it dries out. Therefore, it is crucial to know the moisture content of each piece of wood before you use it. For instance, if you are planning an inlay job using two different varieties of wood, you will need to know the moisture content of each type so that your inlay glue joints stay intact. A great way to avoid a ruined project is to use a moisture meter. Another option is to use a wood moisture app. There are various ones, some even free, which are available online for you to use.
3 – Prevent excess glue stains
To stop stains caused by oozing glue along joints, try clamping the pieces together first without any glue. Use masking tape and place it over the joint, then cut it with a sharp utility knife along the edges. You can then separate the pieces, apply the glue you wish to use, and clamp the pieces back together again. Any of the glue that oozes out, will go directly onto the masking tape, not the wood. Remember, though, to remove the tape BEFORE the glue dries.
4 – Keep a clean, orderly workspace
It may seem obvious, but having a clean and tidy workspace can be as simple as clearing clutter from your work area. A disorderly room can hinder your productivity. Try to only keep out items that you use every time you do any woodwork, and keep everything else in designated areas, so that you know where they are and they are quick and easy to find when you need them.
5 – Keep your blades sharp
Another thing that is probably obvious, yet is something that people often forget, is that dull tools such as chisels, blades, planes, scrapers and gouges don not cut cleanly, and can be a danger in your workspace. They can tear the wood fibers resulting in an uneven, unprofessional look. Tools that have been chipped or nicked will also require sharpening. Tools with sharper blades make woodworking easier, more efficient, and safer. One of the sharpest and most reliable blades you can find, is on The Roamwild Multi-Pull Saw Pro, which has specialized hardened Japanese steel blades, which hardly ever need sharpening. But when you do find it time and you need a new blade, the replacement blades are easily available from Homgar.com, and are so easy to change over, using the special quick release button built into the handle. This means less waste for the environment, and a saw that will last you for years!