Refinishing Wood Paneling

Refinishing wood paneling can completely change the ambience of a room from being one that looks tired and neglected into one that has a sense of utter style and opulence. For many years having wood paneling in a room was seen as rather ‘old fashioned’ and not in keeping with the modern minimalist styles.

However, as with many things, the style gurus are now proclaiming homes with original and classical wood paneling features to be back in fashion, so it could be an ideal time to consider refinishing that wood paneling.

Repairing Paneling

Wood Repair Tips

Fine woodwork, millwork trim, wood flooring and wood furniture in a home are all subject to surface damage. In expensive, dark woods like mahogany, teak, ipe, rosewood and walnut, these imperfections show up more readily; rather than completely replace them, it may be better to try to repair the existing surface. Dents, burns, chips, cracking and small gouges can all be repaired, given the right methods and materials and careful attention.


Using a Wood Planer

Hand PlanerThe hand wood planer is basically a wood chisel with a specialized handle enabling a woodworker to precisely control the blade and cut, for the purpose of shaving off thin layers of wood as it travels over a surface. If properly used, it gives a flat smooth surface to a workpiece. Here are a few guidelines for hand planing.

First off, check the position of the level cap, the part on top of the cutting iron which acts as a stiffener. The cap should be offset 1/16 inch from the edge of the cutting iron. The plane-iron assembly needs to be removed from the plane to check this, which can be done by lifting a cam on the lever cap.

Making Cross Cuts with a Table Saw

Whether using a multi-purpose blade or special crosscut blade, it is easy to make crosscuts on a table saw. A crosscut is a cut is made against the grain of a piece of wood. A rip cut is made along the grain. Since wood consists of fibers holding the material together, it will tend to split apart along lines running parallel to the fibers, or grain.

To prepare for a crosscut, first check the angle between the blade and the tabletop, using a try square. Do this with the blade of the saw raised to it’s maximum height. If the blade is not at a 90 degree angle to the tabletop, turn the blade tilt adjusting wheel as required.

How to Make Dowel Pin Joints

Dowel Joint DiagramA dowel joint in woodworking couples together two pieces of wood, using wood pins which fit into a hole in the abutting piece. One advantage of a dowel joint over a simple butt joint is that the dowel pins locate the pieces being joined more precisely, relative to each other. This helps to cut down on trial assembling and clamping and simplifies overall assembly, as long the project has been properly laid out. Dowel joints also provide more contact surface area between two parts, thereby strengthening the join.