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  1. The Letter 'd' in Nail Sizes

    Carpenters always talk about 16d common nails or 8d finish nails or 10d sinkers, but nobody ever explains what the heck ‘d’ means. This article does.

Other Projects for DIYers from The Family Handyman:

  1. Hammers Aren't Just for Nails : 101 Ways to Use a Rip Hammer

    Project

    A rip hammer is an all around utility tool capable of dozens of tasks besides driving nails . Here are nine, including demolition, chopping, measuring, bending, digging and others.

  2. How to Nail Vinyl Siding Correctly

    Project

    Vinyl siding will pop and crackle with every change of sunlight and temperature if nailed incorrectly. Here's how to fix the problem if you have it, and how to nail (or renail) siding so that it moves freely and silently for the life of your house.

  3. Oscillating Tool Uses

    Project

    An oscillating tool (multi-tool) has many practical uses. Our Field Editors show you eight ways it solves problems easier and faster than other techniques, including removing grout, cutting pipes and stubborn bolts, cutting hidden nails and scraping up gunk.

  4. Repairing Decks and Railings

    Project

    Easy fixes for common deck problems like rotten boards, wobbly railings and loose nails . Plus, see how to stiffen a bouncy, wobbly deck

  5. Set and Nail Decking Perfectly

    Project

    Building a deck? Learn tricks for straightening crooked boards; making crisp, straight cuts on the board ends; and avoiding problems like hammer marks and unsightly splits.

  6. How to Build a Built-in Bookcase

    Project

    Learn how to use inexpensive materials like birch plywood and standard trim to build a classic, built-in wooden bookcase.

Other Articles for DIYers from Around the Web

  1. How to Protect Molding from Dents While Nailing

    Article

    FromRon Hazelton's Housecalls - Projects & Tips

    When driving nails into molding, nothing is more upsetting than having the hammer head slip and dent that expensive trim work. Well, here's an easy and very inexpensive way to keep that from happening. Start the nail as usual but protect the trim with a strip of wood into which a quarter inch hole ...

  2. How to Remove Nails - Bob Vila

    Article

    FromBobVila.com

    When you need to remove nails from woodwork for any reason, these tips can help you do so without causing damage to the hammer used for the task.

  3. How to Choose the Right Nail Gun

    Article

    FromRon Hazelton's Housecalls - Projects & Tips

    Some projects, like putting up a storage shed, involve a lot of nailing . This nailing can be done with a hammer, but can go much more quickly and easily using a nail gun, a tool that is no longer just for professionals. You can purchase a starter set, including a compressor, hose, and a small nail ...

  4. How Pilot Holes Make it Easier to Drive Screws and Nails

    Article

    FromRon Hazelton's Housecalls - Projects & Tips

    A pilot hole is a small hole that is drilled into the wood to allow a screw to go in more easily. But there are times, like when a child is helping with a project, that it makes sense to drill pilot holes for nails too. A small pilot hole drilled into the wood makes the hammering go a… Continue ...

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Blog Posts

  1. Updated Simplest Console

    Blog

    FromAna-White.com

    Easy console plans from Ana-White.com Follow Ana on Pinterest! About Project Author Notes:  Did you all see this beautiful console table built by Reasmom? It's based off these very very old plans (can we be kind and call them vintage?) that use very simple building techniques and just a nailer (or screw gun if that's what you've got). I remember when I first started building and was like pocket hole what???? and just had a nailer and a drill.  And honestly, as much as I love how my furniture looks now, sometimes I miss the simplicity of just nailing a few boards together and being crazy excited that somehow a console table just happened.  You know what I mean? So I wanted to share updated plans for this console table (sized like Reasmom's) that are suitable for a beginner project and inexpensive to build. You can read more details about the finished used by Reasmom here, and of course the plans follow. Enjoy! XO Ana Materials and Tools Shopping List:  3 - 1x3 @ 8 feet long 2 - 1x2 @ 8 feet long 3 - 1x4 @ 8 feet long 1 1/4" and 2" finish nails (can also use screws or pocket hole screws) Tools:  measuring tape square pencil safety glasses hearing protection nailer Cut List Cut List:  4 - 1x3 @ 29 1/4" (legs) 4 - 1x2 @ 29 1/4" (legs) 2 - 1x4 @ 10" (top aprons - ends) 2 - 1x3 @ 10" (bottom aprons - ends) 2 - 1x4 @ 28" (top aprons - front/back) 4 - 1x3 @ 29 1/2" (bottom shelf) 1 - 1x2 @ 10" (bottom shelf support) 3 - 1x2 @ 8 1/2" (top support) 4 - 1x4 @ 36" (top) Step 1 Start by building the four legs. Keep the outside edges as flush as possilbe as you nail the 1x3 to the 1x2. TIP: I place a 1 1/2" thick block under the 1x3 to help support the 1x3 as I nail to the 1x2, and will use clamps to hold everything in place. Wood will move as you go down the joint - make it do what you tell it to! Step 2 With the legs done, position them so the 1x3s are to the front and back, and the 1x2s are to the ends. Then attach aprons and bottom stretcher to the legs. Step 3 Next, add the top aprons. Remember, when you use nails , you MUST use glue. Step 4 Postition your 1x3 bottoms helf boards on the bottom shelf and nail to the bottom stretcher. Apply glue between each of the bottom shelf boards and clamp or hurry up and do step 5. NOTE: Pocket hole users will want to build the bottom shelf first with pocket holes and then attach the completed shelf to the bottom. Step 5 To keep the bottom shelf boards aligned, attach a 1x2 underneath, using 1 1/4" finish nails and glue. When you attach the 1x2, minimize gaps between the 1x3 boards. Step 6 These supports will help you attach the top. Nail in place with 1 1/4" finish nails and glue. Step 7 Start with the center 1x4s and attach from underneath, with equal overhangs on the ends. Then work outsare and attach the outer 1x4s, keeping ends flush. Flip console over and nail through top into legs and aprons. Make sure you apply glue to all joints if using nails . Pocket hole users: build top first with 3/4" pocket holes and 1 1/4" pocket hole screws. Finishing Instructions Preparation Instructions:  Fill all holes with wood filler and let dry. Apply additional coats of wood filler as needed. When wood filler is completely dry, sand the project in the direction of the wood grain with 120 grit sandpaper. Vacuum sanded project to remove sanding residue. Remove all sanding residue on work surfaces as well. Wipe project clean with damp cloth. It is always recommended to apply a test coat on a hidden area or scrap piece to ensure color evenness and adhesion. Use primer or wood conditioner as needed. May I Suggest a Finish? Using Vaseline to Distress a Paint over Stain... Staining and Finishing Tabletops Minwax Oil Based Stain on Birch   1 of 9 ››

  2. Nail Protection Plate

    Blog

    FromA Concord Carpenter

    Protect Plumbing Pipes With a Nail Stopping  Nail Protection Plate A nail protection plate helps prevent nails from piercing pipes and electrical lines after the plaster walls are installed and the... [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]]

  3. Taylors Coffee Table

    Blog

    FromAna-White.com

    Free plans to build a pottery barn knock off taylor coffee table from Ana-White.com Follow Ana on Pinterest! About Project Author Notes:  Hello DIY Friends!!! I'm so excited to share with you today a brand new plan! I partnered up with my dear friend  Whitney from Shanty2Chic  so you can build your own coffee table! I love project like this - simple, sturdy, stylish - and handmade!!! Here's from  Whitney : This is such a fun and easy build guys!  I used my  Kreg Jig  and  Ryobi tools to build the whole thing in under 3 hours.   I love how beefy and rustic it looks!  The cost for all my wood and wheels was right at $100… Sure beats the $700 Pottery Barn is asking for theirs ;-)  Whitney  spent about $100 on this coffee table, and a FEW HOURS building it!!!!  Isn't it lovely??? We've got you covered with the plans following - check them out - but first, please take a second to read  Whitney's building post  for lots more photos, building tips, and of course, finishing steps. Thanks  Whitney !!! XO Ana + Fam PS - Love that  bookshelf ?   Of course  it's DIY too! Materials and Tools Shopping List:  1 - 4x4 @ 6 feet long 1 - 1x3 @ 12 feet long 3 - 2x2 @ 8 feet long 1 - 2x4 @ 8 feet long 2 - 2x6 @ 9' stud length or 10 feet 1 - 1/2" thick plywood panel @ 24" x 48" (quarter sheet) 2 -1/2" pocket hole screws and 1-1/4" pocket hole screws (if you kept the 1x3s) 1" or longer finish nails (for nailing bottom shelf plywood down) 4 - caster wheels and screws to attach (if not included) Cut List Cut List:  NOTE: Instead of 1x3s, Whitney used 2x3s which does not affect the plan (actually makes it stronger) but many of you cannot source 2x3s locally. If you do make this change, you will need to measure and cut a few boards that tie in to the 1x3s (step 2). 4 - 4x4 @ 13-1/2" (legs) 2 - 1x3 @ 17" (short aprons) 2 - 1x3 @ 41" (long aprons) 2 - 2x2 @ 21-1/2" 1 - 2x4 @ 21-1/2" 2 - 2x2 @ 41" 2 - 2x4 @ 8-1/2" 1 - 1/2" plywood @ 48" x 24" 2 - 2x2 @ 17" 1 - 2x4 @ 20" Tabletop 4 - 2x6 @ 50" 2 - 2x2 @ 50" Step 1 Attach 1x3s (or 2x3s if you are using) to the four legs. For 1x boards, use 3/4" pocket holes and 1-1/4" pocket hole screws. For 2x boards, use 1-1/2" pocket holes and 2-1/2" pocket hole screws to attach. Step 2 Attach bottom supports - this will support the bottom shelf plywood. Best way is pocket hole screws - if you are screwing into 1x boards (used 1x3s for sides) use 3/4" setting on pocket hole jig and 1-1/4" pocket holes. If you use 3/4" plywood for the bottom you don't need the 2x2 supports. Step 3 Build these "T" pieces first, then attach to the legs and bottom. Step 4 Notch out with a jigsaw the bottom shelf and attach to the bottom with finish nails and glue. Step 5 Attach top supports and end aprons to legs. Step 6 Instead of the 2x4 down the center as pictured, Whitney liked using 2 - 2x2s spaced between the 2x6s to make it look more balanced - and I'd have to agree. Build the tabletop first with 1-1/2" pocket holes and 2-1/2" pocket hole screws and wood glue. Then attach to base with through aprons and center undermount support with 2-1/2" screws (you can use pocket hole screws so you don't have to go out and buy special screws just for this step). Step 7 Attach caster wheels to bottom of the legs. Step 8 For finishing details - please visit Shanty2Chic Finishing Instructions Preparation Instructions:  Fill all holes with wood filler and let dry. Apply additional coats of wood filler as needed. When wood filler is completely dry, sand the project in the direction of the wood grain with 120 grit sandpaper. Vacuum sanded project to remove sanding residue. Remove all sanding residue on work surfaces as well. Wipe project clean with damp cloth. It is always recommended to apply a test coat on a hidden area or scrap piece to ensure color evenness and adhesion. Use primer or wood conditioner as needed.

  4. Kids Art Center

    Blog

    FromAna-White.com

    DIY Kid's art center plans from ana-white.com Attach shelves next, with the top and bottom shelves on top/bottom of boards from step 1.  Recommend attaching first with pocket holes, than glue and nailing into the 1x2s/1x3s. Project Type:  Kids Tables and Chairs Room:  Kids and Toys main_category:  Handmade Holidays Skill Level:  Intermediate Style:  Children's Estimated Cost:  $50 - $100 Dimensions:  Suitable for 3 children, table height is 21" Cut List:  BOOKSHELF 2 - 1x12 @ 32" (Sides) 2 - 1x3 @ 24" (Top) 2 - 1x2 @ 24" (Bottoms) 3 - 1x12 @ 24" (Shelves) 2 - 1x2 @ 11-1/4" (Cleats)   TABLE 2 - 2x2 @ 20-1/4" (Legs) 2 - 1x2 @ 46-1/2" (Side Aprons) 1 - 1x2 @ 21" (Front Apron) 1 - 3/4" plywood or other tabletop @ 24" x 48" (tabletop) Cutting Instructions:  Author Notes:  Hi everyone!  Happy Friday!! And happy Handmade Holidays!!! Christmas is just 8 weeks out!  But Jaime from That's My Letter and I are already thinking of awesome things that you we can help you make for your kids this year, without breaking the bank.  Not to mention giving a gift that is unique, locally made, and made with love. You can check out all of our previous Handmade Holiday posts right here.   Whether your kids love legos or coloring or crafts, Jaime and I wanted to add a play table that included storage for easy access to toys and craft supplies, and also easy clean-up for Mom's sanity.  Not that sorting legos with a baby trying to eat them would drive you crazy, would it?   Every home and every family is different, but Jaime and I both loved the idea of having a bookshelf next to the play table for easy storage.  So we created a tabletop that is integrated into the bookshelf.   We designed the project around a single quarter panel (24x48 inches) as the tabletop (available at most hardware stores off the shelf) to make cutting easier.  This fits three kiddos nicely. We'll also be sharing plans for those cut DIY chairs later this week, so check back for those!!!   Well, you better get building, my elf friends!  So here's what to do:  - Go visit Jaime from That's My Letter here for lot more photos including construction photos and tips/tricks - Check out the plans below and cut list/shopping list - Build and enjoy and please share when you are done!   XO Ana + Family   Attach bottom and top boards to the two side 1x12s.  3/4" pocket holes and 1-1/4" pocket hole screws and glue are preferred but you could also attach with 2" countersunk screws from outsides of 1x12s with glue. Attach cleats to inside of bookshelf with 1-1/4" screws or nails and glue.   This completes the bookshelf. Attach tabletop - you can do this with glue and nails from top or through pocket holes drilled in previous step.  Make sure aprons are inset 3/4" all the way down. Now, the table.  Drill 3/4" pocket holes on ends of end apron, and one end of side aprons. Attach to legs, flush to inside, with 1-1/4" pocket hole screws and glue.   TIP: Also drill 3/4" pocket holes facing upward in aprons for attaching tabletop in next step. Table then can just rest on the cleats.  You can also secure table aprons to cleats with screws. Preparation Instructions:  Fill all holes with wood filler and let dry. Apply additional coats of wood filler as needed. When wood filler is completely dry, sand the project in the direction of the wood grain with 120 grit sandpaper. Vacuum sanded project to remove sanding residue. Remove all sanding residue on work surfaces as well. Wipe project clean with damp cloth. It is always recommended to apply a test coat on a hidden area or scrap piece to ensure color evenness and adhesion. Use primer or wood conditioner as needed. Finish Used:  Photo Credits:  Shopping List:  12 feet of 1x12 boards 4 feet of 1x3 boards 2 - 1x2 @ 8 feet long 1 - 2x2 @ 4 feet long 1 - 3/4" plywood or project panel 48" x 24" (available off the shelf)       Please read through the entire plan and all comments before beginning this project. It is also advisable to review the Getting Started Section. Take all necessary precautions to build safely and smartly. Work on a clean level surface, free of imperfections or debris. Always use straight boards. Check for square after each step. Always predrill holes before attaching with screws. Use glue with finish nails for a stronger hold. Wipe excess glue off bare wood for stained projects, as dried glue will not take stain. Be safe, have fun, and ask for help if you need it. Good luck! 1 1/4 inch screws 1 1/4 inch finish nails 1 1/4 inch pocket hole screws wood glue wood filler Tools:  measuring tape square pencil safety glasses hearing protection Kreg Jig™ drill compound miter saw nailer sander Step 21:  Step 22:  Step 23:  Step 24:  Step 25:  Step 26:  Step27: 

  5. Baseboard Trim

    Blog

    FromAna-White.com

    As you know, we are busy DIYing our mom's a duplex to share, dubbed the Momplex ... and moving day for one mom is fast approaching! We bought the contractor 12' lengths of baseboard moulding, in the 5 1/4" widths. I love taller baseboards. If I had my way, we'd be half way up the wall with moulding :) . First, we take a measurement of the very longest wall. Our strategy is to cut the longest cuts first, and then use up the smaller scrap pieces in shorter spots. And then it's saw time. We cut all of the baseboard moulding just a tad long, then trimming it down for the most perfect fit. We can't afford to cut a piece short and run out of baseboard moulding - for us, it's a day trip to the nearest Home Depot. Then we just start laying the cut baseboards down, with the ends mitered at 45 degrees for 90 degree corners. It takes us at least two cuts every time to get it right. The first cut is a smidge long, then we go shave a tiny bit off, fit it again and so on until the baseboard is PERFECT. I know, totally unreasonable, but you tend to go the extra mile when Mom's the boss. For outside corners, we simply mark the length instead of measuring, and cut the mitered corner, Perfect fit! For walls longer than 12 feet, we take an overall measurment, And the splice two shorter pieces together with a 45 degree bevel cut. We only had to do this in one spot in the living room. We had the side that you are more likely to see overlap the side that you are less likely to see so the joint is pretty much invisible. That, and the media console will sit right in front of it. But just in case Mom did decide to look behind her tv, she'd never know we spliced baseboard trim together there. Once we got all the long pieces cut, we started the smaller pieces. These guys are easy, no mitered joints required - just measure, cut, and fit in place. I just love how this hallway looks with the baseboard moulding! We ran the baseboard moulding right into the closets, and around.  Remember the $5 manifold cover Grace and I built ?  We painted it white and ran the baseboard right around it.  Now we just gotta build a door for it. With all the baseboard cut and fit, it's time to nail it to the walls.  We'll be nailing it into the studs in the walls, So we cut a board and marked it with the wall stud pattern.  That way we don't have to measure out each and every stud or use a stud finder to find each and every stud. I don't think I'm ever getting my nailer back. It sure is handy to not have to worry about compressors and greasy hoses, dragging a pneumatic nailer from room to room.   We set the nailer so the nail head is just below the surface of the trim, So we can fill the holes with wood filler.  I always overfill the holes because wood filler shrinks when it dries, and then go back and lightly sand the excess off. Despite our meticulous efforts to get the trim perfect, there were a few spots that just weren't cutting it (pun not intended) Nothing a little caulking can't fix! Now you are the only one that knows about that corner.  Don't tell our Mom's on us, okay? Sometimes walls can be out of square or have a curve to them, or your drywall texture more significant than ours, and you can also finish off the wall to baseboard joint with caulking, but we didn't find it necessary at the Momplex. Just need a table now! Well, after we paint all the trim .... and maybe add crown moulding. Have done baseboard?  Did you find it as easy to install as we did?  We'd love to hear your side too! read more

  6. Window Jamb Extensions

    Blog

    FromAna-White.com

    Remember when we built these guys? And then we stacked foam blocks around them?   And then poured concrete in the foam blocks around the boxes? The walls of the Momplex are almost a foot thick, so we'll need something to extend the window jambs flush to the drywall. We've gone back and forth on what material to use. We considered different composite materials, but because of the potential for water damage due to exteme cold weather condensation (not likely because of the super insulated walls, but were not taking chances), we passed ... We opted not to just drywall the insides of the windows (what fun would that be?) and because drywall isn't good friends with moisture either .... We opted not to slurge on a moisture resitant hardwood (super pricey for these widths) just because we are on a DIY budget, and whatever we do choose is just getting several coats of white paint .... So we choose ...... Yep, plywood. We build furniture and kitchen cabinets out of it ... so why not extend our window jambs with it? And once all the window trim is painted, you'll never know! Well, you'll know 'cause you're awesome and you read this blog, but you won't tell on us, will you? We ripped the plywood into strips the width we'll need the jamb extensions to be. We've done lots of window jamb extensions in the past. Normally, we cut each piece, nail it to the inside of the window rough opening, and then add another. But this time, we decided to try something new and build the entire window jamb extension first, and then as a complete unit, slide it into the window rough opening. So we cut all the window jamb extension pieces first, leaving about 1/4" to allow for shimming and getting the box in there, and drilled pocket holes with our Kreg Jig on the outsides And then just clamped and screwed We kept all the pocket holes to the outside, so they'll be hidden ... Then hauled all the window jamb extensions upstairs. By we, I actually mean the Ram. There are some benefits of being preggers. Once the windows are all hauled upstairs We give the window openings a good cleaning. And then here's the magic moment .... will it fit??? Our meticulous efforts to build everything super square paid off - the window slid right in perfectly! Some of the bigger windows were a little more stubborn But we got them in! The window jamb extensions fit in perfectly, but we'll wait until after we attach the outer trim before nailing them to the framing. It's these little tasks, one by one, that are starting to make the Momplex look more like Mom's home. We are so excited .... just gotta put doors in and we'll be on to trim! XO Ana read more

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