On the Level is a home remodeling & repair blog to keep you informed on the products and trends that we see in the field.

Carpet Padding

When purchasing carpeting, you should buy the best-quality carpet you can afford, coupled with the highest quality padding. In fact, the padding that goes between the carpeting and the subflooring is as important as the choice of carpeting itself. Padding provides softness and support, cuts down on noise and insulates the floor. Often referred to as "underlay" or "cushion," padding thickness depends on the pile of the carpet above it. Padding should be no thicker than 7/16 inch, even for a very deep pile carpet. Too much cushion can actually void a manufacturer's warranty; so, take the time to find the padding that is right for your new carpet.
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Compressor Maintenance

Make sure the compressor's output matches the pounds-per-square-inch requirements of the tool to be used. Check and change the oil regularly. After a day of use, empty the air tanks and drain any water build-up inside the tank through the drain tap at the bottom of the tank.
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Clamp Helper

When clamping long or wide panels with bar clamps, a dowel inserted crosswise between the jaws of the bar clamps and the wood will help center the pressure and keep it uniform. Use dowels about as thick as the thickness of the wood you are gluing up.
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Drawknife and Spokeshave

When rounding out your workshop tools, consider adding two of the handiest tools used in shops of old-timers: a drawknife and a spokeshave. For the occasional job a drawknife can be used instead of the router for beveling work. It's fast and it can make fine cuts without any chatter marks. A spokeshave is like a plane with handles, making it easy to control the depth of cut for a perfect surface.
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Workshop Cabinets

Small cabinets with plastic drawers are easier to use if you mount them at eye level in your shop. That way items are easier to see without pulling out all of the drawers to get what you need.
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Ceiling Outlets

When wiring or rewiring your workshop, consider installing extra outlets in the ceiling, positioned over groupings of power tools. Ceiling outlets can be more accessible and can help eliminate tripping over extension cords. If you are setting up or remodeling your workshop, also plan to install at least one outlet every 3 ft. around the perimeter.
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Bark Saver

When doing tree pruning work, making an extra undercut with your pruning saw will help keep the bark below heavier branches from stripping down and marring the trunk. Make the undercut from below the branch, about 4 to 6 inches out from the trunk. Then cut from the top of the branch, just outside the lower cut. Lastly, use the saw to make a final cut close to the terminal base.
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Blind Holes

When drilling blind holes in iron or steel, fine metal bits usually fall into the hole. To remove them, you can use a strong magnet and a soft iron or steel rod that is smaller in diameter than the hole. Push the rod to the hole bottom, then press the magnet to its upper end. Keeping the magnet to the rod, pull it out of the hole and brush away the bits of metal. Repeat until all of the metal bits are removed.
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