R4 Components

Posted: October 10, 2010 in Resistant Materials

Initial knowledge – 1

Current working knowledge= 2.5

Throughout this year I am aiming to use and become competent in a wide variety of hand tools and their uses.  I need to be able to use the tools efficiently and just as importantly safely in order to feel confident of being able to show students how to operate the various components in a safe and efficient manner.  I have used some of the tools before but not for a while and so with some it will be a case of just getting used to them again and with others I will need to do a bit more investigating.
I will be setting myself small mini tasks as well as the ones suggested in order to obtain a rounder view of all the working properties of the components.  One of the first tasks I set myself was to make some dovetail joints. For this I used a range of tools starting with:

Hand saw
There are 2 types of hand saw, rip is for cutting along the grain and the one that I used which was a crosscut which surprisingly is for cutting across the grain. It is a hand held saw with a large blade and handle.  The edge of the blade below the handle is known as the heel and the ‘front’ of the saw is known as the toe.  Between these 2 points there are a number of cutting teeth usually between 8 to 15 per inch and each tooth cuts with one edge while pushing the sawdust out to the side.  To use the saw safely I drew a straight line across my piece of long pine and made sure I was holding the wood firmly before I started cutting it.  I placed the saw on the line and used a small stroke to start the cut.  Then using the full length of the blade cut through the wood applying more pressure to the wood than I was to the actual saw and as I got to the end made sure the wood being cut was held firmly so it didn’t splinter

Carpenters Square


Easy to use, simply for marking a right angled line across my wood at the same thickness as the joining piece.  The main function of this tool is to lay out lines at right angles and would be good for jobs such as framing.

Dovetail Saw


A dovetail saw is part of the backsaw family and is good for more precise cuts for detailed carpentry like the dovetails I was creating.  The teeth on the dovetail are configured for an even crosscut across the surface of the wood.  I found that I got a greater degree of control and accuracy  using this saw and was able to use it safely for a more precise cut.

Coping Saw
I used the coping saw to take out the majority of the waste wood in between my joints.  It has a taught thin blade and was perfect for this and would be good for cutting curves as well.  If I removed the blade and placed it through a hole and re-attached it to the u shaped frame I would be able to do a cut out at a slower pace to the scroll saw.

Bevel Chisel


Once I had removed the majority of the excess waste I used a bevel edged chisel to take the wood down to the marked line.  I used a bevel chisel as the end is tapered to fit into the corner of a dovetail joint.  There is also a firmer chisel that has a blade with a rectangular cross section, but these are used for tougher heavier work as they are stronger.   Also a pairing chisel which is a longer thinner chisel which can be pushed into long joints such as a housing joint and be can used for cleaning up the joint to make it fit.The most important thing I found when using the chisel was to keep it sharp.  On first attempt it was taking chunks out of the pine but once sharpened you could use it almost like a knife.  On research it suggests that the number one rule for chisel safety is to keep them sharp, as a blunt chisel is considered dangerous and requires more effort to push through the wood.  The other safety rules include always pare away from the body and keep hands behind the cutting edge.  It is also advisable to use protective glasses.

Carpenter’s Mallett


A simple easy to use mallett that I used with the chisel, It has a large surface area on the hardwood head and can be hit at any point.  Safety is obvious and basically just to keep fingers and hands away from the striking point.

Different types of screw

Countersunk slot head:  This can be used for general woodworking for example fitting hinges to doors. Because the screw is countersunk it can be tightened ‘flush’ to the surface of the material.

Pozidriv head:  Used with special screw drivers which will not slip when pressure is applied. This is ideal when using screws in corners or confined spaces.

Roundhead screw:  These are used for fixing pieces of material together where countersunk holes are not being used. Round head screws can look quite decorative especially if they are made of brass.

Different types of hinge

Butt hinge:  Comes in a range of sizes from 13mm to 150mm and is normally used for cabinet doors. They are very strong but cannot be adjusted once they are fitted.

Butterfly hinge:  This is often used on light-weight doors and different shapes and patterns are available. They are generally easy to fit.

Flush hinge:  This type of hinge does not require a recess to be cut. They are not as strong as butt hinges but can be used for light-weight doors and small box construction.

Barrel hinge: This comes in two parts. The threaded part of the hinge is screwed into a pre-drilled hole. They are easy to fit and the hinge can be dismantled.

Concealed hinge:  These normally come in two sizes (25mm and 36mm. The hinge is adjustable once fitted and is designed with chipboard and MDF in mind.

Continuous or piano hinge:  This is a hinge that comes in different lengths and can be bought in brass or steel.  It is ideal where a long hinge is required such as a desktop or a cupboard door.  Small countersunk screw are normally used to fix in position.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Different types of nail

Round wire nail. These large round head nails are mostly used for rough carpentry where appearance is not important but strength is essential. They are inclined to split a piece of wood. Sizes from 20- 150 mm (0.75in – 6in).
Oval Wire Nail Oval wire nail. Most suitable for joinery work where appearance is important since they can easily be punched below the surface. They are less likely to split the wood if driven in with the longer sides parallel to the grain. Sizes from 12-150 mm (0.5in – 6in)
Oval Wire Nail Round or lost head nail. Stronger than oval wire nails, they can easily be punched below the surface of the wood. Sizes from 12-150 mm (0.5-6in)
Oval Wire Nail Tack. A short nail with a wide, flat head, the tack is used for fixing carpets to floorboards and for stretching fabric on to wood.
Oval Wire Nail Panel pin. Round lightweight nail used for cabinet-making and for fixing small mouldings into place.
Oval Wire Nail Cut floor brad. Rectangular, they have an L-shaped head and are nearly always used for nailing floorboards to joists. Sizes from 25-150 mm (1-6in).
Oval Wire Nail Masonary Nail. Made of hardened steel, this nail is used to fix wood to brick, breeze block and most types of masonry.
Oval Wire Nail Square twisted nail. Twists into the wood. These comparatively expensive nails offer a more permanent, screw-like grip than plain nails.
Oval Wire Nail Annular nail. Useful where very strong joints are required. The sharp ridges round the shank become embedded in the wood to give a tight grip.
Oval Wire Nail Cloat head nail. Made of galvanized steel, with a large, flat retaining head, this nail is most suitable for soft materials such as plasterboard and roof felt.
Oval Wire Nail Spring-head roofing nail. For fixing corrugated sheeting to timber. The twisted shank and inverted cup head produces a very strong purchase.
Oval Wire Nail Corrugated fastener. For reinforcing a weak wood joint or for securing mitred or butt joints in rough framing.
Oval Wire Nail Cut clasp nail Rectangular in section, they are difficult to remove and provide a very strong fixing in wood and pre-drilled masonry. Sizes from 25-150mm (1-6in).
Oval Wire Nail Hardboard nail. These have a diamond-shaped head which is virtually hidden when hammered into hardboard. Sizes from 9-38mm (3/8-1.5 in).
Oval Wire Nail Sprig. A small nail without a head. They are used mainly to hold glass in window frames before applying putty which covers them up. Sizes from 12-19mm (0.5-0.75in)
Oval Wire Nail Upholstery nail. Available in chrome, brass and other metallic finishes, they are used as a secondary fixing with tacks. The dome head gives a decorative finish when nailing chair coverings into place. Various head sizes are available.
Oval Wire Nail Staple. U-shaped round wire nails with two points to hold lengths of wire in position. Some staples have an insulated lining for fixing flex and electric cable.
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