Workshop Tips, Screwdrivers and Screws
Having the right screwdriver makes most jobs alot easier.
A basic set includes four standard slot tip and four cross tip(Phillips)
drivers in different shaft lengths and blade sizes.
A larger set may also include some star shaped Torx screwdrivers,
these are handy for repairing household appliances, cars, and yard and garden equipment.
Square drive(Robertson) screwdrivers can be used for recessed screws in furniture,
boats, and recreational vehicles.
By using a screwdriver for a job it wasn't designed for, you risk damaging the tool
and possibly injuring yourself. Don't use a screwdriver as a pry bar, chisel, hole punch
scraper, or paint stirrer. If you must use a screwdriver for any of these chores, use an
old one that is already damaged.
Avoid slips when driving a screw by holding the screwdriver blade in the screw slot.
If you hold your work while driving the screw, the blade can easily slip out of the slot
and injure your hand.
When selecting a screwdriver, be sure the tip fits the slot of the screw perfectly.
If the tip is too big or too small, the blade will slip out of the slot.
Don't use a screwdriver with a damaged tip, it can slip and injure you or damage your work.
The same goes for a damaged handle, a split or broken handle can cause injury as well.
A greasy handle can easily slip out of your hand, so keep the handles clean.
Never use a screwdriver near live wires or for electrical testing.
Don't use pliers to increase the torque(turning power) of a screwdriver. Use a wrench for this,
and only use with a square shank screwdriver.
To get more holding power when driving a screw, dip the tip of the screwdriver blade into
a small amount of scouring powder or carpenter's chalk. This will help hold the screwdriver
in the screw slot.
To start screws in hard to reach places, use a magnetized screwdriver. You can either
buy a factory made one or you can magnetize one yourself by dragging its blade over
a magnet several times in one direction. To prevent the charge from draining out of a
magnetized screwdriver, keep it away from other metal objects.
A home magnetized screwdriver should hold its charge for about a week. To demagnetize, just drag the
blade over the magnet in the opposite direction.
You will have an easier time driving a screw if you first pull its threads across a bar of soap.
Also, by dipping a screw in linseed oil before driving, not only eases the job, it protects
the screw from rust.
Despite the rule that you shouldn't hit a screw with a hammer, a few light taps when a screw
is almost in place causes the wood fibers to compress and slant downward against the screw
threads. As the screw is given its final tightening it will bite better.
For stuck screws it usually means getting rid of the grime or rust that is around the screw
head. Before you try forcing it, spray the screw with a lubricant, a penetrating oil or
liquid wrench. if you don't have any lubricant, use a little vinegar, lemon juice, or cola drink.
(the carbonate fizz will do the work for you).
Brass screws make attractive but fragile fasteners. Because the metal is soft, a screwdriver
can damage the slot or break the screw. To avoid this, drill a pilot hole, pick a steel screw that
is the same size as the brass one, drive it into the hole. Then remove it, lubricate the brass
screw with soap, and drive it into place.
To keep a screw from getting loose from vibrations, dab shellac underneath the screwhead,