12 votes
Accepted

How to use a protractor if you can't see what you are measuring?

The angle between the ruler part and the the semicircular part is the same as the angle indicated on the scale. This is because the centreline of the ruler is parallel to its edge. In more detail: ...
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  • 4,899
8 votes
Accepted

Precise microwave oven control

Only a few microwave ovens control the microwave power level on essentially a continuous basis. That is, if you set the power level at 30%, the oven runs at 30% power output. Most are based on ...
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  • 9,685
8 votes

Masking tape tears paper off!

There are a few tricks of the trade for using tape on drawing paper. Here are some of them: Use good quality paper. Try using different types of tape to see which kind works best with the type of ...
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7 votes
Accepted

Is there a way to "revive" or protect hand sewing needles from corrosion?

Tl;dr: Your best option may be to buy gold plated or stainless steel needles. Everyday needles are nickel plated (says Wikipedia and other sources). Nickel corrodes in contact with sweat, worse for ...
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7 votes
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Masking tape tears paper off!

Masking tape is the general term for a kind of tape for masking off parts of a range of materials (wood, stone, glass, concrete, &c.). The glue will need to have a certain level of bonding (often ...
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  • 8,794
7 votes

Rotary tool: How to insert bits into collet straight?

it seems that you are inserting the bit in correctly, it just seems like it's not going in straight some of the times. Besides being careful when inserting the bit, I'm not sure how else to guarantee ...
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6 votes
Accepted

How to regain a row of slipped stitches?

When you have a row of slipped stitches that are too tight to fit back onto the original needle, you can pick them up on a different needle, such as: Use a much smaller knitting needle. Eg, if you ...
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  • 1,671
5 votes

How to regain a row of slipped stitches?

An alternative solution is to unravel another row stitch by stitch and insert the needle into the loop that was just freed of the previous stitch. I found this technique especially usefull for more ...
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  • 8,535
5 votes

Align concentric holes of different sizes in 2 pieces of metal on drill press

Working with my very basic press, I'd clamp the two pieces together very well, and drill all the pilot holes. Then separate the pieces and open out the clearance holes. I wouldn't go straight in with ...
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  • 4,899
5 votes

Something against hand pain due to writing?

If your hands start hurting or feeling sore, take a break. Listen to your body - if something hurts, it needs to rest. Otherwise, you can risk permanently injuring/disabling yourself. One artist whom ...
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  • 639
5 votes

How do I use this old compass?

Oooh, I used to have one of these as a kid - not the whole set, sadly, but the compass itself and a few of the accessories. Congratulation on the purchase, it's a very satisfying tool to use. I ...
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  • 359
4 votes
Accepted

Rotary tool: How to insert bits into collet straight?

I'm embarrassed to not have noticed it sooner, but I found the reason. I was pushing the shafts of the accessoirs in until I felt them touching a hard surface, but it was not the exact center of the ...
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  • 8,535
3 votes
Accepted

How can I blend soft pastels without removing too much colour?

I'm not sure why it is lightening: is the paper showing? Does the paper have enough 'tooth' or grip to begin with? How hard are you pressing into the paper and pastel? I've found gentle pressure with ...
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  • 412
3 votes

Something against hand pain due to writing?

If you are "very concerned", talk to your General Practitioner MD. He may refer you for physical therapy. Therapists have access to many writing assistive technologies. I have used (and still do ...
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3 votes

Align concentric holes of different sizes in 2 pieces of metal on drill press

Couple of things you could try: What I usually do: Get your two pieces of steel aligned clamp the diagonal opposite corners with vice grips. Drill the other two diagonal holes 5mm, (you will need a ...
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  • 206
3 votes

Does a flex shaft need to be on a stand?

No, a stand is not required but it does give you some more options. A stand that you can clamp the flex shaft tool into can give you hands free access to it, like a mini buffer/grinder. Even without ...
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  • 2,720
3 votes
Accepted

Desk Pencil Sharpener - what's the purpose of the feeding arm?

In retrospect, I don't know how I missed it, but here are the details for anyone else wondering: Pulling the feeding arm extends the spring. When the arm is pulled all the way back, it's locked. At ...
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  • 161
3 votes

How can I avoid chipped edges on glass etching with a Dremel?

It's hard to diagnose without seeing the bit you used, but here are my ideas: Orientation The line in the center of your image has only one chipped edge on one side. That implies that the problem ...
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  • 8,535
3 votes

How to use a drill press to drill with drawing layout

On thin material, sometimes it's easier to get precise placement by drilling with a handheld tool because you can adjust the bit location as you start to make the hole, then the hole will guide you ...
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  • 9,685
2 votes

Masking tape tears paper off!

Don't worry about drafting tape if you can't find it in your area. A common hack - peel masking tape, stick it a couple of times on another surface (say, your hand) to remove some adhesive, and then ...
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2 votes

How can I avoid chipped edges on glass etching with a Dremel?

Most common would be a rotary bit. This one would be specifically for glass carving: Amazon link The bottom row would be the fine detail tips, would be beneficial to wanting to carve out small detail. ...
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  • 1,649
2 votes

How can I create a center disk to put under a compass point?

For something of this sort, you'll either construct one yourself, or repurpose a common item from another resource. The first thought that popped into my alleged mind is a coaster, something with a ...
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  • 6,193
2 votes

How to use a protractor if you can't see what you are measuring?

To place this protractor or any measuring tool at a difficult to see point use a stylus such as a pencil or an awl or the metal tip of a compass. Place the point of the stylus on the given point and ...
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  • 2,720
2 votes

Something against hand pain due to writing?

People with arthritis and various other ailments and injuries that affect their hands increase the size of what they hold. This lets you use more of your hand to hold the pen and apply less pressure. ...
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  • 9,685
2 votes

Precise microwave oven control

I suspect you're heating fairly small quantities. If so another way (in addition to Fixer1234's answer) to reduce the power reaching your material is to heat something else at the same time. This ...
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  • 4,899
1 vote

Precise microwave oven control

The pic from the NeilMed Instructions shows something that is important to know about microwave ovens, “Previously heated microwaves will produce much more energy.” I wanted to have an official ...
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  • 1,554
1 vote

Something against hand pain due to writing?

You may want to consider using a wrist brace while writing. It'll constrict your writing, so you'll need to practice with it before doing something that needs to look perfect. You can also search for ...
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1 vote

Something against hand pain due to writing?

Something I have done is soaking my hands in warm water (not lukewarm, not boiling hot, just as much heat as you can handle) before, after, and in between the periods of writing (say, taking a break ...
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  • 71
1 vote

Rotary tool: How to insert bits into collet straight?

With such a wide range of collets... are you sure you have the right one for the bit? With the right match it shouldn't be possible to tighten it fully with the bit off center. It may be the bit ...
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  • 2,720
1 vote

Learning to work with a rotary tool

You've got a local makers DIY shop, so that is probably your best bet. If it's current membership don't focus on crafts, just ask the leadership if you can start a craft night. Volunteer to teach ...
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