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  • Woodworking Q&A

    No matter how diverse our backgrounds, we all have at least one thing in common: We’re all interested in improving our woodworking skills. Whether your a beginner looking for help with your first project or an experienced pro looking to pass along some time-tested techniques, StartWoodworking.com’s Q&A forum is a great place to begin.

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    Most Recent Questions

    I have been told that most staines wont work well with the yellow cedar because of the natural oils in the wood.Also finding glues to use is also a challenge because yellow cedar is very oily.Ju

    by thesawdawg | June 14, 2012
    0 answers



    by Saybre | May 3, 2012
    3 answers

    I built a cherry table to accompany an old Welsh Cupboard top. The top is cherry and is quite a dark color.  I am working with aniline dye for the first time.  After muc

    by halfabubbleoff | April 27, 2012
    2 answers

    I need to sharpen plane irons, chisels, and my turning tools.  I have been using sandpaper and scary sharp method for irons and chisels and my 12" disc sander for the gouges, etc.&nbsp

    by Seajay | April 19, 2012
    1 answer

    Hi folks,

    How many of you all use SketchUp?

    If you use it, how did you get started?

    If you don't, why not?

    Just curious... Thanks, Gina

    by curryleaf | April 9, 2012
    9 answers

    Say a 2 inch deep hole that varied from 1/4 ot 3/4 inch in diameter with smooth sides.

    No special project in mind, just curious.

    by Rxalph | March 4, 2012
    1 answer


    by wael elsafty | February 26, 2012
    2 answers

    Although many years ago I took wood working shop in school for two years. That was 30 years ago I wish to get into it now as a hobby. I feel I need to begine with the basics.

    by user-972143 | February 21, 2012
    2 answers
    by gladstone1 | February 20, 2012
    3 answers

    I hope someone can help me with this...

    by NikonD80 | February 6, 2012
    3 answers

    I have a couple end tables in good condition but the finish is bubbled up.

    What is the best way to strip and refinish these tables?

    by dmcfish | December 29, 2011
    1 answer

    Saw a video on truck bed slides and can't find it again.  Can you help?

    by larr | December 28, 2011
    1 answer

    I am trying to make a box out of 1/2 inch plywood using box joint/finger joint joinery.  I have a box joint jig made from same plan as this one:

    by aa040371 | December 14, 2011
    0 answers

    I am making 2 spice cabinets.  I want to make sure they are square before I attatch the back and faceframe.  I measure diagonally and am off by about 1/4 inch.  How do I correct t

    by CraigLow | December 5, 2011
    5 answers

    I am joining 7 lengths of 6" wide walnut for a table top.  I am using dowels to keep the boards in line - just like the side table in season 3.

    by thaiboy | November 3, 2011
    3 answers

    I'm somewhat of a beginner with both a table saw and a compound miter saw.

    by scben | October 30, 2011
    4 answers

    Our kitchen cupboards are OLD & shellac coated.  They are desperate.

    by vtlady | October 29, 2011
    1 answer

    My 3/8 blade needs cleaning.  I've been doing some small projects using cherry, and the blade is in need of cleaning.  

    by joeTomeo | October 21, 2011
    6 answers

    I'm finishing a myrtlewood clock in semi-gloss polyurethane and have finished application of 5 coats with light sanding (220, 00 steel wood, 0000 steel wool) between coats and 0000 steel woo

    by shopkingdom | September 8, 2011
    21 answers

    I need to know how the dividers and shelves are attached to one another. I was going to use dowels, but is there another way. I will be using 3/4" pine. Thanks

    by Zahn | September 8, 2011
    21 answers

    I'm currently doing woodworking as a hobby but would like to start selling my projects full time. I'm self taught through DVDs, magazines, books, etc.

    by gene1775 | September 2, 2011
    2 answers

    Quite often I see steel wool used in the finishing process. Over many years I have used steel wool but i have seen some rust form on some of the projects; usually in the corners.

    by desoto | August 25, 2011
    2 answers

    Can I substute 1/2" or 3/4" for the shelf. The plans call for 5/8" I do not have a planer and can not locate 5/8 at the lumber yard or home center

    by pk3y6ndp | August 14, 2011
    2 answers

    Adobe had a pop up that I needed to upgrade.  When I upgraded Flash no longer works for Fin Woodworking or Start Woodworking.

    by AlanSweet | July 27, 2011
    3 answers

    What is the best way to store "all kinds if tape".  Right now I keep several kinds on a pegboard, masking, duct, cellophane and also in a plastic storage bins.  I recently ha

    by getbettermpg | July 22, 2011
    4 answers

    My Dad died just over 10 years ago.  Due to the nature of where the grave is located, we are not allowed to put up a permenant grave marker in stone but we have been given permission to put

    by NikonD80 | July 13, 2011
    1 answer

    In the Mar/Apr issue (#218) of Fine Woodworking, Mike Pekovich has an article on the virtues of Wipe-on Poly.

    by smettler48 | July 1, 2011
    1 answer

    I love to salvage and recently had the opportunity to salvage some old and and very well made French doors. The problem is that they were in a building and I think rats chewed on the wood.

    by gaildziuba | June 26, 2011
    1 answer

    Hi, folks. I need a bit of advice and sanity-check here. I'm in the process of setting up a workshop in my basement.

    by Loxmyth | June 23, 2011
    6 answers

    I'm building a blanket chest in cherry. I'll line it with cedar. Should I put a finish on the inside of the cherry before I put the cedar lining in?

    by ce000 | June 16, 2011
    1 answer

    I am makeing the night stands but have to adjust the high from 29 1/4 to 26" how do I adjust the shelf placement and start of the taper

    by pk3y6ndp | June 15, 2011
    1 answer

    My son and I both purchased one, and both of them have terrible run out in the blade.  The blade measures roughly .157 in width, but the slot cut is greater than .180.  You can see the

    by 40splinters | June 14, 2011
    3 answers
    Hi All:   A few years ago, my brother-in-law gave me a used DeWalt 7-1/4" circular saw - a rugged, hefty mo
    by Ron_C | June 7, 2011
    3 answers


    What widely-available nominal-dimensioned lumber species would be my best bet for building a workbench?

    by Ron_C | May 12, 2011
    8 answers

    Hello everyone,

    by egabriel | May 11, 2011
    3 answers
    by RonBurd | April 23, 2011
    4 answers

    I purchased a 14" Jet Bandsaw in November of 2010. I really like the way it cuts but one thing I found out quickly was there was no dust collection chute installed on it.

    by cajunbeat | April 21, 2011
    3 answers

    I have some older stones from my Dad and from yard sale purchases. How can I tell which to use oil on, and which to use water on?

    by Earl_Westman | April 16, 2011
    3 answers

    My name is James Reeves, l live in Trenton, Ontario, Canada l needd fellow woodworkers help in building a complete bedroom suite.  My son wants me to build him a king size bed, 2 ni

    by JIMSSOLIDWOODPROD | April 14, 2011
    1 answer

    I have recently finished building a red oak table for a client.   I sent him some samples of stain colors for him to choose from.  He thought all of them were too dark, including

    by SSCobra | April 12, 2011
    2 answers

    When I push the button to start seeing the series of second season I'am asking to enter with user name and pass. I put these I have for entering www.startwoodworking.com but ask me again.

    by rokich | April 12, 2011
    3 answers

    I purchased edge banding bits from Eagle America and while these look great in the pictures, I can't seem to make the cuts without drift at the end of the cut.

    by cajunbeat | April 9, 2011
    2 answers

    One of our staff members just alerted me to a problem with our Q&A posting forms.

    by GEide | March 22, 2011
    1 answer

    I recently had a question from a reader about what we meant by 8/4 stock in a recent Fine Woodworking magazine article.

    by BetsyE | March 22, 2011
    1 answer

    I have been reading Fine Woodworking off-and-on for a number of years, and this year subscribed. I recently bought a house with garage and was able to purchase a number of us

    by Earl_Westman | March 17, 2011
    17 answers

    Hi all, I just ran into a situation where someone's image didn't appear in their gallery post. See screenshot below.

    by GEide | March 17, 2011
    1 answer

    I'm about to purchase a band saw to add to my basement woodshop. Does anyone have a recommendation for a band saw under $1000. I'm considering the Rikon 10-325 or the Grizzly G0555 x14.

    by lgsmith15 | February 15, 2011
    3 answers

    I am completing my first chest of drawers and need some opinions on how to finish the drawer boxes. The drawer fronts are red oak and the back and sides are poplar with birch ply bottoms.

    by airshow | February 14, 2011
    4 answers
    I have a dozen collectable pocket watches and would like to build a storage/display box for the watches. Suggestions would be most welcome. Thank you.
    by tiredncranky | February 13, 2011
    3 answers
    I have been using old shellac and have not seen anything wrong.
    by Elmer Kreisel | February 13, 2011
    2 answers

    For the life of me, I can not apply shellac.  I have mixed one pound, two pound and three pound cuts and the results are always the same.

    by blackemmons | February 13, 2011
    13 answers

    I filled out all my information as requested so I do not see what the problem is. Please advise or correct this issue for me. I am looking forward to learning from everyone.

    by lbmm4139 | February 13, 2011
    3 answers

    I'm setting up a shop on limited resources. I've got a small tablesaw and router so far.  What do you recommend I get next, a planer or jointer

    by JoMomma | December 10, 2010
    12 answers

    I’ve just started making furniture and am about to buy my first chisels. What types and sizes should I start with?

    by Chuck_Morgan | November 4, 2010
    4 answers

    What is the best product to use as a first coat if I want to paint a piece of furniture with latex; waterbased paint or a primer? Is there a difference between them?

    by GEide | November 4, 2010
    2 answers

    I recently purchased a Stanley #90 rabbet plane.

    by jfsksa | November 4, 2010
    2 answers

    New to woodworking here...Can anybody tell me if there is a standard width for rails and stiles?  I'm guessing it depends on the size of the workpiece?

    by jbogusch | November 1, 2010
    5 answers

    I've decided to build myself a proper workbench rather keep making do.  I've got a basic idea for the design; sort of a cross between the Essential and Matt's Monster workbenche

    by NikonD80 | November 1, 2010
    5 answers

    I'm thinking about using metal shelf pins to hold up bookcase shelves, since I want to be able to adjust the shelves.

    by losttexan | November 1, 2010
    3 answers

    hello everybody, could someone please tell me what the best bench chissels are.

    I can,t  choose between lie nielsen and blue spruce.

    by juryaan | November 1, 2010
    3 answers

    Question: I am trying to ebonize an oak table. I applied a solution of vinegar and steel wool to a sample board, but that turned the oak bright purple.

    by Bob_Black | October 5, 2010
    1 answer

    Question: I’m making a kitchenette table and want protection against watermarks. Is there a finish that comes close to the water resistance of Formica?

    by John_Willoz | October 5, 2010
    3 answers

    Is it safe to rip 1/8-in.-wide strips between the rip fence and blade?

    by Ed_Pirnik | October 5, 2010
    1 answer