Precision is a big problem for some carpenters.
Very often cuts and joints end unevenly, not flat or open.
To avoid this problem, you just need to familiarize yourself with some woodworking techniques that increase your chances of better accuracy for perfect cuts and joints.
In this blog, I will show you 7 woodworking techniques for better accuracy that will undoubtedly help you in measuring and marking for your next project.
How can I improve my woodworking skills?
Practice, practice, practice!
No one is born with perfect woodworking skills.
You can learn woodworking techniques by watching other woodworkers, but you will have to take the time to get better at woodworking with small steps.
With the 7 woodworking techniques I describe here, you will no doubt improve your woodworking skills and accuracy in no time.
Sometimes big changes happen because of small things.
7 Woodworking techniques for better accuracy
Woodworking techniques Tip 1 | Keep your blades sharp for better accuracy
Blunt cutting tools such as saw blades do not cut cleanly.
They tear the wood fibers, resulting in faint, uneven cuts.
When cutting with blunt cutting tools, your cuts are not accurate and need to be sanded afterward, making you even further away from the perfect cut.
So before you continue reading all the other woodworking technique tips, make sure your cutting tool is sharp for better accuracy.
Woodworking techniques Tip 2 | Align your blade well
Most table saw blades have ATB teeth. This means that the teeth alternate. One tooth leans to the left followed by the next tooth leaning to the right.
If the marked line is on the left side of the blade, align it with the left edge of a left-leaning tooth.
If the marked line is to be on the right, align it with the right edge of a right-leaning tooth.
In other words, be very careful about which tooth on the saw blade you align the marked line with for better accuracy.
Woodworking techniques Tip 3 | Use the right measuring tools
Buying good measuring tools is extremely important for better accuracy.
But when you buy your new tape measure or ruler, you cannot be sure whether it is perfect.
What you can do is check the new measuring instrument so that all your measuring instruments match.
Remove the new measuring instrument from the packaging and place it next to your old measuring instruments on your workbench.
Keep them together and align them with a zero point.
Now check at 10 cm if they are still in line with each other.
Perform another check on 20 cm and so on.
If not, compare them with other measuring instruments and determine which one is wrong.
If you’ve determined which one is not right, throw it out!
Do not leave an inaccurate ruler or tape measure in your workshop.
If you look around you will notice that there are many types of measuring instruments.
Below I list the most important ones that can be useful for woodworking.
Be sure to check out my blog My top 10 recommended basic woodworking hand tools.
In addition to measuring instruments, you will find a few other must-have tools for your workshop.
Stanley 33-726 8m/26-Feet by 1-1/4-Inch FatMax Metric/Fractional Tape Rule
Kreg KMA2900 Multi-Mark Multi-Purpose Marking and Measuring Tool
Neiko 01407A Electronic Digital Caliper Stainless Steel Body with Large LCD Screen | 0 – 6 Inches | Inch/Fractions/Millimeter
Johnson Level & Tool 1904-0700 7-Inch Johnny Square, Professional Easy-Read Aluminum Rafter Square
Woodworking techniques Tip 4 | Pick the right marking tools
Like many of us, the first thing that comes to mind when creating markers is a pencil. And I admit, that’s usually the first thing I aim for when I need to make markings.
The problem is that a pencil line can be just a bit thicker than half a millimeter.
On its own, a single half-millimeter mis-cut is not too bad, but if the error is repeated several times, the error will only increase. Especially if you combine different parts into one big whole.
A better alternative for a pencil to better accuracy is a marking knife.
The line you draw with a marking knife is the actual cutting edge that you will make so that you can no longer cut incorrectly.
You can still use your pencil for a single cut. But if you need to make multiple cuts and you want better accuracy and perfect dimensions for the end result, use a marking knife to make your marks.
So if you want to improve woodworking techniques, tune your marking tools to the accuracy you want from your workpiece.
Below I list the marking tools that I use myself and which I can highly recommend.
The pica marker is one of the best pencils I have ever used.
It is a sturdy pencil with a cover in which a sharpener is integrated, so you always have a very sharp pencil for super fine marks.
I am amazed at how long the graphite lasts. When the graphite is finally used up, it can be replaced very quickly.
If I work on a project that needs better accuracy, I use this marking knife.
Also, check out that marking gauge, I think this one is very handy.
What you can also do is make a marking gauge yourself, as I did.
Just click the link, and you will see a step-by-step guide on how to make your own DIY marking gauge.
PICA 3030/SB Dry Longlife Automatic Pen
Pica marker refill
Pica Dry Graphite Refill, 4030, 10 Pack for Pica dry Longlife Automatic Pen
Narex Dual Double Bevel Striking Marking Knife with Blade from Hardened Mn-V Steel
Clarke Brothers Wheel Marking Gauge – Woodworking Marking Scriber Kit With 2 Replacement Cutters – Wood Marking Tools With Graduated Inch & MM Scale
Woodworking techniques Tip 5 | Plan your cuts
If you want to make equally long cuts throughout the project, it is better to make them at the same time for better accuracy.
Plan your project in advance and see which pieces have the same dimensions.
Then set up your saw, and make all the cuts you need to make that length, one after the other with the same setup.
This way you continue with your next dimensions until you have completed all parts of your project.
It takes a little more planning before you start the project, but you save time measuring during the project and your cuts are all accurate.
Woodworking techniques Tip 6 | Make use of stop blocks
If you need to cut several boards to the same length, never make cuts by marking the boards separately.
You can still do your best to mark the same way, there will always be a deviation.
If multiple boards are to be the same length, mark only the first.
Once the first board is ready on your table saw for cutting, place a stop block at the end of the board.
By sliding the following boards against the stop block, they are in a perfect position for an identical cut.
Woodworking techniques Tip 7 | Mark, don’t measure
The last tip in these 7 woodworking techniques for better accuracy is marking.
Keeping and marking the workpiece in place instead of measuring and transferring numbers will not only result in better accuracy but also often faster and it prevents mistakes.
Misreading a ruler or confusing numbers while walking towards the table saw happens easily. I think we’ve all come across this before.
So marking instead of measuring will always result in accurate cuts.
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Christophe, founder of Christofix.com
Woodworking | DIY | Home decoration