On-the-Go Paint Shield
Thanks to reader Bill Chamberland’s great tip, we’ll be spending a lot less time applying masking tape and more time painting trim and baseboard molding. Firmly press a wide-blade drywall knife alongside the trim or molding and brush on the paint. Excess paint goes on the top side of the knife if you press it down firmly, but it’s smart to check the underside occasionally while you work and wipe the knife clean as needed with a solvent- or water-moistened rag.
Pick up a few guitar picks (about 25 cents each at a music store) and use one the next time you feel the urge to use your fingernail as a tool. They’re practically perfect for applying wood putty to nail holes and scraping squeezed-out glue from project corners. Use one any time you need a mini scraper or spatula. Thanks to reader Bill Waite for hitting this high note.
Stretchy Pipe Clamps
Moaning again that your pipe clamps aren’t long enough to assemble your new “monsterpiece?” Pipe down and quit whining! A few extra 2- and 4-ft. pipe segments plus a handful of pipe couplings are all you need for the extra-long or extra-wide job. Screw couplings and extra pipes to those too short pipes to create the needed lengths. If the clamps are under the wood, add spacers slightly higher than the couplings perpendicular to the pipes. When you’re finished, unscrew and store the extra pipes with couplings and you’ll be ready for the next jumbo project that comes down the pipeline. A big thanks to Jeff Poirier for tipping us off to this great idea.