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QWhat types of cartridges and filters should I be using in my respirator? I use the typical solvents and finishes most woodshops use.

Jeff Damon Wasilla, Alaska

A An "organic vapor cartridge," which is called just that by manufacturers and vendors, will handle the common solvents you are likely to use, but to work well, it must be paired with a pre-filler to stop airborne finish particles and dust Most companies offer three types of pre-filters, designated "P" for oil-proof, "R" for oil-resistant and "N" for not for oil. If you do not spray oil-based coatings, you

Which filters are best suited for the different solvents used most commonly by woodworkers? If you know how to read them, you'll find that the answers are printed right on the filters.

may be able to use the slightly cheaper "N" grade, but for wide-spectrum protection, your best bet is a "P"-type pre-filter atop an organic vapor cartridge.

Michael Dresdner

Q Whenever I assemble a mortise and tenon with glue, I always miss at least one spot in cleaning up. This, of course, shows up once the workpiece is stained. How important is it to apply glue to the mating surfaces of a tenon's shoulder?

Must the entire tenon be coated with glue? If I do not apply glue to the shoulders, would I be reducing the strength of the joint?

Robert Eaton Garden City, Michigan

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A There is no need to put glue on the shoulder of a tenon. Traditional teaching says that end grain gluing has no holding strength. It's not strictly true — it does have some. But compared to the holding strength of the glue on the tenon and in the mortise proper, its value is insignificant.

Glue cannot work unless the mating surfaces are wet. The best technique is to brush or paddle the thinnest layer of glue on all parts of the mortise and the tenon, but not the shoulder areas. What you can't do is put a heavy layer of glue on the tenon and think that it will transfer to the walls of the mortise as they are put together — similarly don't "load up" the mortise and expect transfer onto a dry tenon. In other words, the key to a sound glue-up is complete meeting of the mating parts along with a controlled glue deposit

To thoroughly clean up all the squeeze-out — and there is always going to be a little — clamp up the work as normal.

Quickly remove what's easy to gel at with the clamps in place. Within four or five minutes, remove the clamps one at a time and clean off whatever was obscured by it, return the clamps, and move on.

Ian Kir by

QI am curious about the difference between planing rough lumber in my shop and the surfacing that a mill would do. If I buy S2S stock, does this mean that the board has been planed and face jointed or just planed?

Mark LeBlane Baton Rouge, Louisiana

A The faces of S2S lumber are parallel, but that is about all you can count on. Most lumber mills do not normally flatten lumber before they plane it to thickness, so any defects (bow, twist, cup, etc.) will still be there in the S2S or S4S material.

Most S4S material — both softwood and hardwood — that you find at the big box stores is produced in large production mills with molders that flatten one side of the board prior to planing the other. This material is straighter and flatter than normal S2S lumber, but still not as good as jointed and planed stock. Another disadvantage is that it is usually planed to finish thickness (say, 3/4"), and if it cups or twists before you use it, you have no extra thickness left for flattening and resurfacing, so you end up with thin stock. This is a source of never-ending grief for hobbyists who use this type of material, not to mention that it is very expensive.

For some uses, like flooring or siding, flatness might not be an issue, so regular S2S surfacing is probably worth what you pay for it. But, if you're building furniture or cabinetry, or anything requiring fairly long, wide or unsupported boards, I'd strongly suggest milling it yourself from rough lumber or having your mill flatten and plane it to your order.

Ellis Walentine

QI have several battery-operated drills stored in my unhealed garage. It gets below freezing occasionally in winter and over 110° in the summer. Is it OK to keep the batteries in the garage or should I store them in the house?

John White Sugar iMnd, Texas

FEIN MultiMaster.

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Wood Working for Amateur Craftsman

Wood Working for Amateur Craftsman

THIS book is one of the series of Handbooks on industrial subjects being published by the Popular Mechanics Company. Like Popular Mechanics Magazine, and like the other books in this series, it is written so you can understand it. The purpose of Popular Mechanics Handbooks is to supply a growing demand for high-class, up-to-date and accurate text-books, suitable for home study as well as for class use, on all mechanical subjects. The textand illustrations, in each instance, have been prepared expressly for this series by well known experts, and revised by the editor of Popular Mechanics.

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