For questions involving wood as a construction material, either as lumber or finished features of a home.

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8
votes
2answers
6k views

What size dowels to use for joints?

I'm comfortable with the process of creating and joining wood with dowels, but I'm not sure what size dowels to use in which cases? Specifically, I'm working with 1" thick stock (3/4" actual), what ...
0
votes
0answers
31 views

Can a 61-lb speaker sit on a shelf screwed to pine wood paneling mounted directly over masonry?

I'm trying to create more room for guests. If I raise my speakers up, that's 2 more people. But they are 61-pound speakers, and would injure someone if they fell. [So, while not important for ...
2
votes
2answers
3k views

How can I repair water-damaged hardwood countertops?

Me and my housemate are complete novices when it comes to home improvement/DIY/etc. so when we moved into a recently renovated house with solid wood worktops, we were oblivious to what care they might ...
1
vote
1answer
50 views

Can I install wood stair treads over old Linoleum

Installing maple tread and riser kits into my bi-level home. The stairs currently have linoleum on them. The lino peals up easy leaving a the paper glue layer on the stairs. Can I install the solid ...
1
vote
1answer
118 views

Is this swing beam safe?

Please help. I made a swing for my kids and now am wondering how safe it is. The swing beam is pressure treated yellow pine 4x6 and 16 feet long. The swing hangers are attached to the 4 inch side of ...
1
vote
1answer
144 views

Should I keep a bathroom door open or closed to keep it from expanding?

Should I keep the bathroom door open or shut after a shower to keep it from expanding? What if the fan is on as well?
1
vote
1answer
35 views

How can I repair this rotted section of wood siding?

I have a section of wood siding that is soft and rotting. Complicating matters (and possibly causing the issue) is the placement of the seating area of the deck. The previous owners built a privacy ...
2
votes
2answers
384 views

How do I fill a gap between my hearth and the hardwood frame around it?

What type of caulk or sealant should I use to fill a space on my fireplace hearth between the slate & the wood frame that surrounds it. The hardwood floor was refinished, but the wood framing ...
1
vote
1answer
60 views

How do I correct variations in stain color/density?

I have stained a desk top and where the stain crosses over the slightly earlier application there is a dark mark. There's no finish on top of the stain. The wood was prepared properly for the stain ...
2
votes
2answers
45 views

What types of tools are required for making wood toys and models?

I am learning and doing some woodwork, and I have been using a hand saw and sanding to make very simple wood blocks. I would like to know what tools are suitable for toys like this puzzle and these ...
2
votes
2answers
43 views

How to increase the height of a wooden cabinet?

I am a complete and utter novice when it comes to woodwork (this is in fact my first ever project) so there may be an obvious solution to this, but: I'm building a TV lift cabinet. I started with the ...
1
vote
2answers
97 views

Will the highlighted legs bow?

I don't really know much about building anything so I was trying to keep this as simple as possible (2x4s and OSB, wood glue and screws). I'm worried about the highlighted legs bowing. This is for a ...
1
vote
1answer
289 views

How can I stain dark Sapele wood to reduce red tone?

I have installed stair treads in Sapele (dark wood with definite reddish tinge) but now realize this clashes badly with the coffee coloured bamboo floor and the oak doors of the hallway where the ...
1
vote
1answer
69 views

How can I paint a wooden desk with a rubberised feel?

I've acquired an old wooden desk that is just varnished wood. I would like to paint it but with the rubberised feel I have seen applied to some metals. I'm not sure if this paint exists for wood, but ...
22
votes
6answers
33k views

Should I use steel or wood studs for basement exterior walls?

Related: When should you use metal studs? I'm planning on finishing my basement. (assuming all water issues are resolved) I'll be putting up a water barrier (tar paper) on all exterior walls, ...
0
votes
2answers
73 views

Tongue groove wood flooring - oops, I cut them both off

I am installing strand-woven bamboo flooring. One end is grooved, the other has a tongue. Typically, I cut the tongue side to width and use that at the start of my row. Then I add a full-length ...
1
vote
1answer
131 views

How to fix wood stain drips?

I have recently finished staining some wood 2x4s but I accidentally put too much stain on the wood. It dripped down to the other sides of the boards and it now looks sloppy and tacky. We considered ...
1
vote
0answers
25 views

What can I do if my wood boiler keeps tripping the high limit switch?

I just installed a outdoor wood boiler and added 2nd thermostat in house. When I start wood boiler the high limit switch gets hot and trips. The only way I can keep it going is to put a jumper wire in ...
0
votes
1answer
128 views

How do I prevent interior doors from sticking in the winter?

We have several interior doors that only stick or won't completely close in the winter. We also get cracks in the drywall mud above the doors so I think something else is going on besides just ...
3
votes
4answers
109 views

Should I use MDF, plywood, or something else when building a desk?

I'm looking at building a desk but have been reading a lot of conflicting info about which material to use. My main concern is having the desk sag at all. I will also be painting/coloring the desk. ...
2
votes
1answer
22 views

How to fix a spot on new Poly finish?

I'm finishing a custom mahogany wood sill for an interior wall opening and have stained and finished it-- lightly sanding with 220 between four polyurethane coats. In the first two coats a couple ...
2
votes
2answers
534 views

Will silicone spray lubricant cause bare dry wood to swell?

If wooden parts are binding, will silicone spray lubricant cause bare dry wood to swell? The wood is not maple or oak or birch. It is some type of softwood, maybe fir or pine. The bearing surfaces ...
8
votes
3answers
87 views

Recommended screw fastener length

Is there an industry standard for recommended screw lengths to fasten to pieces of material together? For instance, if I need to fasten a piece of 3/4" plywood to a vertical brick wall, how long ...
1
vote
0answers
54 views

What could I be getting stuck on when drilling into a stud?

I was trying to drill a hole for bolts for a TV mount, using a 7/32 bit. About 1" in, the drill wouldn't go any further. It as was in the middle of where my stud finder indicated a stud (but it was ...
0
votes
1answer
51 views

How to apply varnish of a different color on a varnished wood shed?

We have a wood shed that's only 1 year old or so. After the wood shed was assembled, we applied a varnish called mahogany. That day, I was at work. When I came home, the varnish has already been ...
0
votes
1answer
44 views

How do I install a new header in an exterior load-bearing wall?

I am replacing a 36-inch exterior door with a double door, 6 feet wide. It is going into a studded ground floor wall. There is another story above it. House is 24 feet wide. Assuming I am reading the ...
3
votes
3answers
12k views

Why is my desk still tacky two weeks after finishing it with a polyurethane clear coat?

I've recently built a standing desk out of sandply with a mahogany veneer. I have stained it, and two weeks ago added a polyurethane clear coat to protect the stain. However, after doing this, the ...
0
votes
1answer
60 views

How can I attach the frame of a bed to legs using carriage bolts? [closed]

I have a bed that I have been building - it has 4x4's for the legs, and I want to attach the frame of the bed (the part of the bed that runs from front legs to back legs, structural support) to the ...
7
votes
2answers
190 views

What is the best method for carrying a 4x8 by yourself over tough terrain?

I have to travel about a quarter mile through the wilderness, carrying a 4x8 each time to get to a remote building location. Some of the terrain can be tricky, otherwise I might fall in the water. Any ...
10
votes
3answers
40k views

What are the pros and cons of medium-density fibreboard (MDF)?

I heard mixed opinions about making cupboards and beds from MDF. Some said it doesn't matter, MDF is as durable as whole tree or sandwich boards. Some said that MDF is weak, and will not last for ...
2
votes
4answers
83 views

Should I set deck post footings deeply or use concrete footings?

I am building a deck. How about setting 6x6 p.t. posts down on a concrete footing at 4 feet deep (the frost line here) and fill with gravel and soil, and then let the posts run high for the railings? ...
1
vote
1answer
55 views

What should I do with an unfinished parquet floor during a two-year rental?

I'm renting an apartment and I've just moved in. The apartment's floor is a wooden parquet floor and it appears to have been polished/sanded but it doesn't seem to have any sort of finish on it, so I ...
14
votes
7answers
66k views

What grit sandpaper should I use between coats of polyurethane?

I'm planning on applying polyurethane to a pine bench I've finished staining. I decided on foam brushes for application, but I wasn't sure what grit sandpaper I should use between coats. Is 400 good ...
3
votes
3answers
72 views

How to repair a crack along the grain in a solid block of wood from a single tree?

Approximately 3 years ago I purchased a slice of a log, approximately 50 cm (~1.5') wide at the widest place, approximately 2.5-3 meters (~9-10') long, and about 4-5cm thick (I don't have exact ...
4
votes
5answers
3k views

Is there a way to remove the warp in plywood?

I just bought some 1/2" plywood from HD for a project, and the best piece I could find was still pretty warped. Is there a way to fix this? Currently, it's sitting flat on my garage floor with a sheet ...
1
vote
2answers
405 views

What is like a door, but with a groove and two holes?

I want to identify the following object left in the house from the previous owners. It looks like a door, but has a long groove, and two round holes. Furthermore, it has half-bullnose edge, and ...
3
votes
3answers
708 views

What kind of floor is this?

I got different answers from different contractors and I am so confused now. Some said this is hardwood, and some said this is bamboo. If is it wood, is it possible to tell what kind of wood is this? ...
2
votes
3answers
82 views

How can I prevent my dining table from tilting?

I am building a dining table similar to this one - The problem, if you apply some pressure, the opposite ends lift up. In fact, that box underneath itself lifts up. One way is to add a big plate ...
4
votes
2answers
1k views

How can I prevent animals from eating my wooden swingset?

I have a Rainbow swingset made of a Chinese wood called Cunninghamia. The squirrels and deer in my backyard have begun to chew the wood relentlessly. Is there anything I can do to prevent them from ...
3
votes
3answers
1k views

How to cut exact and identical rectangles with a circular saw?

Following this question What tools do I need to make a straight cut in laminated chipboard? , I bought a circular saw. So far, I used it to make long straight cuts which didn't require high ...
0
votes
2answers
3k views

How should I build a wooden gate?

I wish to build a gate across a 3.8m wide driveway. There is a concrete column on one side which I can fix the hinges to (a post into the ground is not an option) and a brick wall on the other side ...
9
votes
2answers
10k views

Can you rout plywood?

I have some applewood 13 ply 3/4" plywood that I'm using for a desk top. I was wondering if I took a router to the edges if it would turnout ok.
2
votes
1answer
100 views

Why isn't my table built from lumber taking stain well?

The stain is so horribly bad that I'm concluding the wood must be treated with something preventing staining. It's Douglass Fir, so I know it's hard to stain, but it literally looks like a zebra after ...
3
votes
2answers
2k views

How do I remove black rings on a wood kitchen top formed by a tin can?

At our house we have a wood kitchen-top. We had placed on it a tin can (a typical cookies can), and probably because of some water sitting there, a black ring has been formed where the tin touched the ...
2
votes
3answers
453 views

How can I join two pieces of wood at 90 degrees?

I'm trying to make myself a wooden CNC machine. I haven't started on the woodworking yet, as I'm still planning on the easiest way I can construct the machine (newbie here). I'm planning to use 1' x ...
1
vote
2answers
84 views

What material is used to fill cracks in wood that looks black afterward?

When looking in the more stylish furniture shops, they often have very large tables (e.g. 10cm thick x 1m wide x 2-3m long, made from one piece of lumber. Understandably, such pieces often have come ...
1
vote
0answers
67 views

How can I join two beams at a corner post in a historical building?

I am rebuilding a porch on our 200+ year old house. It is in a historic section so I am limited to what materials I can use. The porch is 16' wide by 7' deep. I will have 3 wood posts across the ...
0
votes
1answer
39 views

wall mounted table/desk, i've my calculations now what

long story short that i need to build a wall mounted table/desk, i've done my calculation (full stress analysis) and i've moved all forced to the mounting points but now im stuck because i don't know ...
1
vote
1answer
205 views

How do I fix a spot on my wood desk?

Some wood seal got removed on my desk. There is a noticible spot. Is there anyway to fix it without refinishing the whole thing?
1
vote
3answers
427 views

How do I glue glass top to a wooden base

I made a log table and now I'm trying to put a glass top as you can see in the picture. The issue is that the glass top is not sticking to the log. I tried various things such as clear adhesive ...