Woodworking Tool Tips: Measuring Tools

One of the most overlooked tools for the wood shop is also the most important tool that you could ever invest in. Measuring tools are essential in any wood shop because if you do not measure properly, you will not end up with a very high quality finished project.

The first thing that you must do before ever making that first cut is to measure the piece of wood. Many people will measure, measure and then measure again before they mark the cut and finally make the cut. Once you make the cut, you can not take it back so it is very important that you are sure about the measurement.

There are some very basic tools that any woodworker needs in his or her arsenal. A tape measure is essential as is a wooden folded ruler, and a few steel bench rulers. Of course with any measuring tool, you will also need a quality pencil or two with a sharp tip and a hard edge.

As important as it is to have the measuring tools as part of your arsenal, it is even more important to use the ruler and pencil correctly. Many people do not use their rulers correctly and it results in improperly measured projects with less than perfect results.

Remember when you mark your measure to hold the pencil at an angle so that the lead marks directly next to the edge of the ruler.

If you hold the pencil perpendicular to the ruler, your measure will be off. It is also important when you are using a tape measure to hold the tape down slightly so that the curve is flat with the wood. This way you can ensure a precise mark.

If you want to measure curves or circles there are precise tools that you can use for these jobs as well. A compass is the perfect tool to create the perfect circle or curved edge for any project.

Other useful tools to have in the wood shop are a set of square edges and angle finders. If you want to get fancy, many wood workers are enjoying the benefits of laser measurement tools to get the most accurate measurement available before you make the vital first cut.

You do not have to spend a lot of money to build up your arsenal of measuring tools because they are inexpensive and they will last a long time.

Remember, no matter what measuring tool you have, the most important part of the tool is the user that is operating it.