Tool Table Rejuvenation
Here’s a quick, two-step method for cleaning cast iron tables on power tools and protecting them from moisture and corrosion. And as a bonus, your workpieces will slide on the table like silk as you work. Apply automotive paste wax and buff the surface with a piece of felt stuck on 60- or 80-grit sandpaper on the bottom of a random orbital sander. (Felt adheres just like the Scotch-Brite pad to the hooks on the sander.) Our thanks to Serge Duclos for this tip. You could also buff the surface by hand with a soft cloth.
Copy Center Project Patterns
Enlarging scaled-down woodworking patterns to full scale is a lot of work, and the results are rarely accurate. But you don’t have to go through that exercise anymore. Just about any full-service copy center will do it for you in a couple of minutes for a couple of dollars.
Here’s how: Cut the pattern to the actual length of the drawing—our magazine pattern measured 3-13/16 in. Ask to have it enlarged to the size called for in the dimensions. The copy center magician will spin a circular gauge to determine the expansion percentage and punch that info into the copier. In less than a minute, the full-size pattern will roll out. Our 35-3/4- in. Adirondack leg pattern cost less than $2. Stick the pattern directly to the wood with spray adhesive, double-faced tape or masking tape and cut out the part—that’s it! Thanks to furniture designer/builder Bruce Kieffer for this miraculous, timesaving tip.
Check out the secret to getting perfectly placed leg holes on chairs. Hint, there’s a pattern here.
Perfect Miter Joints Every Time
Here’s the way to ensure gap-free miter joints when you’re edge-banding plywood. Before you cut the trim board miters, tape 45-degree “fitting” boards to the plywood corners. Now you can cut the trim to fit, shaving off a little wood at a time until you reach perfection. Once you’ve glued on two opposing sides, fit and trim the other two pieces using the glued-on pieces as guides. Thanks to Tom Huttemier for this new angle on miter joint making.