Working with wood is one of the most creative tasks you can perform.
Making a finished piece, whether it be a bookshelf, couch, table or any other piece from raw materials is an art.
It also requires huge amounts of skill, patience and lots of practice to get the skills down so the only limitation is how creative you can be.
But, it’s not always that easy…
The process of making a good looking piece from wood can be tiring and frustrating – it requires a combination of patience and prowess. The good news is, the skills can be learnt and mastered by anyone.
To work with wood, start by mastering the fundamentals then later learn how to make amazing custom pieces.
Here are five top tips that will help you work with wood
#1 Safety First
If you are going to work with wood, ensure you have safety measures put in place first. This includes wearing glasses to prevent your eyes from sawdust, wood chips or any other debris emanating from the wood.
To protect your hands from rough edges and splinters, it is important to wear good fitting work gloves. This will protect your hands also from nails, staples or any other hazardous material that may be attached, especially if you are working with reclaimed wood such as teak.
Often you will find that you’re working with pieces of material that have been used for other purposes and have all kind of metal sticking out of them.
In cases where you will need to work with power tools, ensure your ears are well protected from the noise with ear plugs.
#2 Know your Tools
It is very important for every crafts man to understand how each tool they require is used. The old adage that says “a craftsman is as good as his tools” is very true, even with wood workers.
If you are hesitant about using some tools, you may not produce the best pieces. Play around with different tools to get familiar with them. You should also know the different types of wood you can work with.
This comes with practice and experience, so if you’re able to work alongside someone who has many years experience on the job this will save you a lot of time and help you develop very quickly.
#3 Get the Right Tools
For you to make wood pieces that you are proud of, it is important to ensure you get the right tools. This will make it easier for you to grasp the art of wood work.
It will also be cost effective to get the right tools since you won’t need to replace them later. If you search carefully, you can find quality tools at an affordable prices. Buy cheap, buy twice as they say…
One of the best tools for enhanced cutting performance in both small profiles and large construction timbers is the wood working DWS780.
This tool has an XPS shadow line cut indicator that provides a fast, accurate alignment of the blade while illuminating the work piece for increased productivity with no adjustment required.
I’d definitely recommend checking that out if you are on the lookout for new wood working tools.
#4 Use Wood Putty
Wood putty is also called plastic wood. You will definitely need wood putty to fill nail holes or knots and give your wood a perfectly smooth finish.
It is important to note that the wood putty settles in as it dries so you will need to over fill the small holes. Finally, use a sandpaper to smooth the puffy out once it is fully dried to make the surface even.
#5 Perfect finish
When you are through making your wood items, it is important to ensure the wood is well finished. This will make your work look more professional and attractive.
Smooth out all the rough edges using sand paper or a power sander. Use products such as wood conditioner, primer or paint to make your work more appealing.
Hopefully you got some ideas about where to start and how to improve you work working skills and abilities.
Here is a great UK based forum which I’m sure will answer any questions you might have, especially when starting out.