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Pocket screws are an exquisite factor. They’ve been used to construct furnishings by everybody from Shakers to Makers. However, utilizing the correct pocket screws in your venture is the distinction between having a venture that’s locked collectively tightly or one that can strip out, loosen up over time or poke by the aspect of your venture. Here, I wish to offer you somewhat little bit of steering on how one can choose the correct screws for your venture.

Pocket holes and pocket screws have been utilized in furnishings for lots of of years.

Pocket Hole Anatomy

When it boils right down to it, there are three various things to contemplate when selecting pocket screws: Length/measurement, Screw Type (coating), and thread measurement.

Now, I’m actually solely speaking about screws designed for pocket holes. If you check out the photographs of the Kreg model pocket screws beneath, you’ll discover that each screw is a washer-head kind screw (known as Maxi-Lock by Kreg) .

This cut-away exhibits the internal workings of a pocket gap joint.

As you’ll be able to see from the cut-away above, drilling a gap with a pocket jig, corresponding to the Kreg 720,  you’ll find yourself with a flat-bottomed, countersunk gap. The flat backside gap is the place the strain of the joint shall be centralized. If you utilize an ordinary woodscrew, with a conical head, you’ll be tightening a wedge into the wooden. This can result in the joint breaking up as the screw is tightened down, which is clearly an issue. The flat-bottom/Washer head fashion of pocket gap screws permits for direct strain to be utilized throughout the joint with out worry of splitting. Kreg additionally provides a pan-head screw that includes a smaller shank measurement, for use in dense hardwood.

In addition, most pocket gap screws can have a self-tapping notch situated at the tip of the screw to assist “cut” the threads as they’re pushed house.

Screw Length and Diameter

As you’ll be able to see in the cut-away above, a correctly sized pocket gap screw is just under the floor of the half. If you select a screw that’s too lengthy for your venture, it’s going to zip by the face of one among your components. Likewise, a screw that’s too quick is not going to supply ample holding energy. So, like child bear’s porridge, it must be excellent.  You can see the completely different size screws beneath.

Pocket screw lengths vary from 3/4″ (for 1/2″ inventory) to 2-1/2″ screws for 1-1/2″ thick materials.

For most of my initiatives, I’m utilizing 3/4″ materials. As lengthy as the two items being joined are a minimum of 3/4″ thick, I exploit 1-1/4″ -long screws (Left in photograph). As quickly as you begin leaping up into thicker materials, the screws have to grow to be longer. The bigger the timbers used for a venture, the greater the pressure on the joint. As a rule of thumb, with additional size on pocket gap screws the diameter of the screw will increase as nicely. The XL Pocket gap screws proven  on the far proper are a main instance. These are  designed for use with the Kreg Pocket-Hole XL Jig, and received’t work with commonplace pocket gap jigs (the diameter of the pilot holes are too small). The 2-1/2″ screws in the heart, nonetheless, will work with commonplace pocket gap jigs.

Thread Size

Now that we’ve determined size of the screw you want, now you need to resolve whether or not you need coarse or superb threads on the screw. And you may suppose “Of course I want coarse threads … They’ll hold better.” Well, sure and no. Coarse threads are certainly bigger and maintain higher in softer woods. Think of woods like pine, cedar (or handled lumber), aspen, poplar, birch, and even plywood and MDF. However, when you get into denser hardwoods, finer threads are higher. For Oak, walnut, hickory, cherry, and maple (together with different denser hardwoods), use superb thread. Now, have I been responsible of utilizing coarse threads in hardwoods … I’d deny it, however I’d be mendacity. However, when I’ve the appropriate thread, I do use it. You can see the measurement distinction between the coarse and superb threads in the photographs beneath.

Coarse threads (left) are designed for softwood and plywood. Fine threads (proper) are designed for dense hardwood.

Screw Coating kind

The ultimate consideration to present to your pocket screw is what kind of venture are you constructing? What I imply by that, is the venture going to be uncovered to climate? If it is going to, you then’ll wish to make it possible for your pocket gap screws have some type of protecting coating on them. In the above photographs, you’ll discover the containers exhibits what kind of coating the screws have in the decrease left nook. Some frequent sorts are zinc coated, chrome steel, protec-kote and blue-kote.

Stainless Steel (Left), Protec-Kote (Center), and Blue-Kote (proper) are three outside screw kinds provided by Kreg.

For indoor initiatives, zinc is just about all I exploit. In my opinion, there’s probably not any cause to go to anything. When engaged on one thing for outdoors (a deck, planters, and so forth.), I would like somewhat extra safety. Stainless metal is the final in power and corrosion resistance. Kreg additionally provides two completely different coatings of their Protec-Kote (brown) and Blue-Kote. Both of those supply three layers of anti-corrosion resistance coating.

By choosing the appropriate pocket gap screws for your woodworking venture, you’re going to start out your venture off on the proper foot. Still having a little bit of downside deciding what screws it is best to use in your venture? Kreg Tool has made a Screw Selection Tool to assist simply discover which screws it is best to use.

Happy Building.

Product Recommendations

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