ManMade Essential Toolbox: Why You Definitely Need a Pocket Hole Jig System
Joining wood can be as much art as it is skill, and beautiful joinery really defines a piece of furniture. But for the times when you just need to quickly join a few pieces of wood securely, try using pocket-hole made with a Kreg Jig tool.
A few years ago, I picked up a small single-hole Kreg Jig for drilling pocketholes. It was simple, easy to use, and produced a nice strong joint that made completing projects much faster. Since then, I’ve used that small jig for at least a dozen projects, from end tables to shop-made cabinet doors and it’s dependably provided a fast joint that holds up well over time.
The way a pocket hole works, is fairly basic. A stepped bit is positioned at an angle to provide a recess that a special self-tapping screw fits into. The angle allows for a strong mechanical joint between pieces that stays level and straight. The self-tapping screw minimizes splitting, and adding a bit of glue makes the joint impressively strong.
Using this technique, joints can be made fast and strong so putting together than next weekend project won’t actually take an entire weekend. A few tips when working with pocket holes:
1. Start drilling slow, and make sure the jig is secured, otherwise the bit can “wander” on the wood.
2. Use the right size screw for the job to avoid splitting the wood and to keep the top of the screw from sticking out from the surface. Also, the screws have a square head so make sure you have bits to match.
3. When screwing the joints together, it’s best to use a clamp to keep the parts flush. Check out this pocket-hole specific face clamp.
4. The Kreg Jig System has single, double, and full clamp jigs to make drilling the holes fast and easy. If you’re investing in a new system, take a look at the options to find one that will grow with you and your projects.
ManMade Recommended Kreg Jig
- Kreg R3 Jr. Pocket Hole Jig System
- Kreg Jig K4 Pocket Hole System
- Kreg MKJKIT Mini Kreg Jig Kit
- Kreg SK03 Pocket Hole Screw Kit in 5 Sizes
- Kreg KHC-PREMIUM Face Clamp
Do you love or use the Kreg Pocket Hole system? Tell us about it in the comments below