Accurate Measuring: Finish Carpentry

10 Jun 2014
To measure accurately the measuring tape must be used correctly. Accurate measuring is needed for carpentry jobs in order to get an elegant finish. If measurement is not accurate the end product will creak, leak or stick.

There is an inner craftsman or woman in you and you wish to unleash it, so you decide to undertake a finish carpentry project. Okay then, let's start. Finish carpentry is the last step of the carpentry process. This is the point where you install baseboards, crown moulding and the like. Finish carpentry requires more skill and touch of craftsmanship because it has to be aesthetically appealing. So you'll have to be a tad more polished!

However, this doesn't mean that you should pressure yourself, on DIY carpentry jobs, close is good enough. A small fraction of an inch here or there is not usually a problem, so don't sweat it. However, visible yet basic gaps of 1/8-1/16 of an inch on a finished piece like a base board, door, moulding or drawers can make a home look rather untidy and inelegant. Inaccuracy in projects can also cause creaking, leaking and sticking! Accuracy is of much importance for certain projects and most certainly for finish carpentry. Now the key item in these types of projects, is the measuring. When accuracy is required, do not start the measuring from the end of the tape where the built-in hook can bend or be slack. It is better to start from the 1-inch mark and carefully line it up with the end of the board or what ever you may be measuring, then mark your measurement on the other end, with a sharp pencil. Always remember to subtract an inch from the measurement at the end, otherwise you will now be 1 inch off rather than just 1/16 of an inch! Also remember to hold firmly to the tape once the 1 inch is lined up on the starting side of the board.

Don’t Worry About It: Remember that a good carpenter is not one that does not make mistakes; it’s one that can hide his or her mistakes.

Happy measuring!


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