Tool Tips

Don't know which tool is best for your needs? Not sure how to make the most out of your power tools? No problem! Get tool buying tips, tool use and basics and, of course, tool and workshop safety. Begin by selecting a product category below.

Tool Tips

Sander BasicsLimit pressure applied to the tool - Let the tool do the work! If excessive pressure is required, you may need to change the sandpaper more frequently.When removing paint or stain, replace sandpaper / sanding belt frequently as the sanding surface will clog with the material being removed. Make sure you empty the dust bag often and at completion of sanding.Keep your tools and work area clean to prevent excessive dust exposure, which will help extend the life of the toolAlways wear proper respiratory and eye protection while sanding! Many compounds such as paints, stains, and other finishes contain toxic substances that can be dangerous when inhaled.To avoid “S”marks or swirls, gradually step down the grit size. Too big of a jump between sanding iterations can leave marks on the wood.

Router UseRouters are designed to make special profile cuts on the edges or on the surface of wood. By using specific bits, you can mortice a door jam to install a hinge, create joints for making drawers or even create patterns to add decorative details to furniture, moldings or cabinetry. Choose the right routerFor occasional routing projects, a 9 amp fixed base router will do the job. More complex projects are best accomplished with a more powerful 10 or 11 amp model. Another consideration is whether a fixed-base or plunge router would be preferred. (see below)Plunge RouterWhen making a cut in the interior of a piece of wood, plunge action allows the user to position the router bit at the precise point where woodcutting will begin resulting in more cutting accuracy. Variable speedVariable speed means you can adjust the speed of the cut to match the material. Cuts in softwood or cuts with smaller diameter router bits generally work best at higher speeds. In contrast, large cuts with large diameter bits or cuts in hardwood work best at slower speeds so you can avoid burning or chipping the work piece.Router tableA router table increases accuracy when making long, precise cuts along the edge of a piece of wood or for more precise interior cuts. See the Accessory Section for router tables. Fine depth adjustmentThis important feature allows you to cut very precise depths with total accuracy and confidence. It is especially useful when the router is mounted to the underside of a router table.Choose the right bitsRouter bit sets contain a variety of cutting profiles and are an excellent value. See the Accessory Section for Skil router bit sets.

SafetySkil Tools urges you to use your tool safely - even on seemingly small projects. Learn how using the right tool, wearing the right gear and keeping your tools properly maintained could all impact your safety.

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