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Woodworking Techniques

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  • Oops! Biscuit Slots Refuse to Align

    by American Woodworker Editors     Tuesday, March 8, 2011
    Oops! Biscuit Slots Refuse to Align I was cutting slots for a long edge joint the other day, and everything was humming right along. But when I put the boards together, they didn’t line up worth a darn! Turns out I made a very simple mistake. All...
  • Oops! Router Bit Gouges Template

    by American Woodworker Editors     Tuesday, March 8, 2011
    Oops! Router Bit Gouges Template Here's an easy fix if you accidentally gouge your template with a router bit: Repair the damage with auto body filler. Generously apply filler to the damaged area. After it has hardened, rasp and sand the filler to...
  • Oops! Tongues Refuse to Fit Grooves

    by American Woodworker Editors     Wednesday, March 9, 2011
    Oops! Tongues Refuse to Fit Grooves I made this cool looking door panel by making cove cuts on my tablesaw. Cool looking, yes, but the tongue profiles swelled right at the end, so they wouldn't fit the grooves in the stiles and rails. Go figure. By...
  • Oops! Flying Sawdust

    by American Woodworker Editors     Tuesday, March 29, 2011
    Oops! Flying Sawdust Last summer, due to the heat, I covered my portable saw with a canvas tarp and retreated to the cooler air inside my basement shop. The saw sat under the canvas for two months, until I needed to cut some boards that were too long...
  • Oops! Runaway Router

    by American Woodworker Editors     Tuesday, March 29, 2011
    Oops! Runaway Router By Tom Hennek My first router, a 1968 Stanley, was a heavy, single speed machine. I remember it well because of what happened the very first time I used it. I chucked up a Roman ogee bit and made my first pass. As I marveled, spellbound...
  • Oops! Talkin' Trash

    by American Woodworker Editors     Tuesday, March 29, 2011
    Oops! Talkin' Trash One day while disposing trash at the landfill, I discovered a pristine miter saw. It looked perfect—well, almost. The blade was covered with nasty burn marks. I love fixing old tools, so I took the saw home, expecting to...
  • Oops! Sanding Au Naturel

    by American Woodworker Editors     Tuesday, March 29, 2011
    Oops! Sanding Au Naturel I’m so handy, I thought as I flipped over the board I had just sanded without stopping my belt sander. I simply lifted the sander out of the way with one hand and let it drop down to my side. Unfortunately, the rotating...
  • Oops! Homesteader

    by American Woodworker Editors     Tuesday, March 29, 2011
    Oops! Homesteader While I was visiting my brother in Florida, he showed me his latest toy, a Wood-Mizer portable sawmill. A huge hickory log was mounted on the cutting platform. Sawdust puffed as the blade effortlessly sliced a 3" thick section from...
  • Oops! Dust Storm Disaster

    by American Woodworker Editors     Tuesday, March 29, 2011
    Dust Storm Disaster After reading about the health hazards of microscopic dust particles, I decided to retrofit my old dust collector with a canister filter. This was its second upgrade: I’d already wired my collector to automatically start whenever...
  • Oops! Rusty Shop

    by American Woodworker Editors     Tuesday, March 29, 2011
    Rusty Shop Before leaving town for the weekend, I made room in my garage shop to stack the 500 bd. ft. of freshly cut red oak that I’d just acquired. I aimed a fan at the stack to help circulate the air, so the boards would dry evenly while I was...
  • Oops! Welded Router

    by American Woodworker Editors     Wednesday, March 30, 2011
    Welded Router OK, I admit it. I’m not the best at tool maintenance. The cord on my trusty old router was frayed down to the wires about 8" away from the motor housing, and occasionally it shorted out. But replacing the cord was too much trouble—if...
  • Oops! Back Leg Boo-Boo

    by American Woodworker Editors     Tuesday, April 26, 2011
    Back Leg Boo-Boo My wife asked me to repair a wobbly kitchen chair. All the joints below the seat had failed, so it didn’t take much to knock apart the legs and stretchers. The joints were a bit loose after I removed all the glue, so I planned to...
  • Oops! I Drilled Through

    by American Woodworker Editors     Wednesday, May 11, 2011
    I Drilled Through Drilling a pilot hole is no time for guessing, especially when there’s a risk of drilling too deep and going through the other side (above). To avoid this, mark the correct depth on the bit with a masking tape flag (right). When...
  • Oops! Super Glued

    by American Woodworker Editors     Monday, September 26, 2011
    Super Glued By Jim McMichael After making a small repair with super glue, I put the tube in my pocket and forgot about it. Later, when I saw the tube’s cap sitting on my workbench, I instinctively reached into my pocket— and discovered that...
  • Oops! Possessed Belt Sander

    by American Woodworker Editors     Monday, November 21, 2011
    Possessed Belt Sander By Frank Gresser My neighbor was sanding a newly created veneer and inlay tabletop when disaster struck.With the switch of his belt sander locked in the On position, he was giving the top the finishing touches. Just then his 2,500...