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My tip to make for easy cleanup is to use the dust attachment that came with the Master kit (or purchase one) and hook it up to your shop vac.  Note that you'll need an adapter as the Kreg Jig dust attachment is 1 1/4" and a shop vac uses a 2" hose.  These adapters are available at HD, Lowes, Rockler, and Woodcraft.

 

Then all of the cleanup mentioned above is much much easier.  The first few times I used the jig, I didn't put on the attachment as I wanted to see how everything worked.  After just a couple of pocket holes, there was a ton of sawdust.   Now with the vac going, there's almost no sawdust on the floor afterwards.

 

My one complaint about the dust attachment is that when it's attached, the clamp that came with the Master kit doesn't fit perfectly.  Kinda weird since they all came in the same package.  But hey, they still work great.

 

Doug



rick said:
What does it mean when the pocket screw washer head is sticking outside the surface of your joint? It's not screwed in deep enough?
Anyone?
Rick, check the collar depth on your drill bit to see if it corresponds to the material thickness you are drilling into.
The best tip I can give has nothing to do with tools, with drawings, with shortcuts. The best tip I can give is one that I learned the hard way. Never take anything for granted! Always and I mean always pay attention to every situation, you get yourself into. I lost focus for less than a second and $22,000 later I will need the ends of two fingers removed. Do not feel sorry for me I did it myself, please do not do it to your self. When you get complacent, that is the time you get hurt. Some of the tools we use can cause so much mayhem that your life will never be the same. I now have three fingers that do not work, three fingers that do not feel, and a life that has changed forever. Let me repeat this, do not become complacent, the penalties are too severe.

I am a great believer in clamps and jigs.

 

A couple of tips.

 

I recommend a product called Clamp-It that I bought from Rockler. You use this to clamp shelves at a right angle to the side of a shelf. It allows you to align, adjust then clamp before you drive in the screw. They guarantee a right angle fit.

If you do not clamp boards together when attaching 2 boards edge to edge, the screw will make one of the boards walk out of alignment. I always drive the screw in at each clamped edge before driving the screws in the middle. I made a clamping jig for the middle by using a hand plane to take off a little of the wood at the ends of of a couple of boards so that they had a bow in the middle. Position the bow on each side at the pocket hole and clamp the ends of the boards to cause pressure on each side of the boards to be attached. The clamping boards need to be long enough to hang past the edges of the boards to be attached.

Can you post a picture or diagram?  I'm having trouble getting a mental picture of what you are describing.

Joe Sherrill said:

I am a great believer in clamps and jigs.

 

A couple of tips.

 

I recommend a product called Clamp-It that I bought from Rockler. You use this to clamp shelves at a right angle to the side of a shelf. It allows you to align, adjust then clamp before you drive in the screw. They guarantee a right angle fit.

If you do not clamp boards together when attaching 2 boards edge to edge, the screw will make one of the boards walk out of alignment. I always drive the screw in at each clamped edge before driving the screws in the middle. I made a clamping jig for the middle by using a hand plane to take off a little of the wood at the ends of of a couple of boards so that they had a bow in the middle. Position the bow on each side at the pocket hole and clamp the ends of the boards to cause pressure on each side of the boards to be attached. The clamping boards need to be long enough to hang past the edges of the boards to be attached.

Here is a PDF file that has a lot of tips in it on clamping. What I was describing was a convex caul illustrated on page 37.  http://www.finewoodworking.com/media/GlueUps.pdf

 

The same tips can be used to work on boards attached with pocket holes.

 

I used the convex caul to clamp the edges of the boards flat at the point where the pocket hole screws would be screwed in. In addition, I clamp boards together so that they are pulled together tight edge to edge and top to top.

I hope that this makes it clearer.

That is a great article.  Lots of good ideas.  I'm saving it in my library.

1) Does the thickness of the piece being connected to determine which Kreg screw to purchase.  e.g., if I were to connect a 2x4 to a 1x4, do I purchase the 1-1/2" or the 2-1/2" screws?

Use the screw size and the jig setting for the width of the smaller board. So you would set the jig as though you were attaching 2 1X4's and  use 1 1/4" Screws for a 3/4" thick 1X4. The reason for this is that the jig positions the hole to be at the center of the board thickness so that you will hit the center of the edge of a board and you will not screw completely through the thickness of the wood if you are screwing in to the side of the board.

 

See http://www.kregtool.com/PocketHole-Screws-and-Plugs-Prodlist.html for recommended sizes vs thickness. Click on the "Screw Length" option below the Image.

I sprayed the hole jig and drill bit with silicon. Dried off the excess with Q-tips. The extra lubrication really does a good job keeping the drill spinning and reduces heat caused by friction. I also recommend at least 2 right angle clamps and 2 face frame clamps. A few extra regular clamps are handy also. Run your finger over the joint to feel for flush. But start first with square cuts. If the mating edges are not square and 90 degrees, It's not going to turn out well for you. A great first project is the Kreg jig storage unit. It's easy enough for learning the basics and you don't have to worry about hiding the pocket holes. And if you're like me, you may have enough old material around so you don't have to go back to the store. Main thing is take your time and have fun. The Kreg system convinced me that I can do this and make nice stuff.

Can anybody help me how to start a thread discussion?

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