If the project you’re finishing features spindles, legs, nooks or crannies, switch from a regular to a wipe-on polyurethane. This finish goes on like a hand-rubbed oil finish and won’t pool, bubble or drip to leave mini messes to sand off when it’s dry. A number of wipe-on poly finishes are available, but we like Rockler’s Polyurethane Satin Gel Finish (rockler.com, $10.59 a pint, $19.29 a quart). It wipes on smoothly, dries super fast and, when applied with a cloth, leaves zero lap marks. Our thanks to Sean Gerlach for this smooth tip.