Welcome to “Tips From Sticks-In-The-Mud Woodshop.” I am a hobbyist, not a professional, someone who loves woodworking, just like you do. I have found some better ways to accomplish tasks in the workshop and look forward to sharing those with you each month, as well as hearing your problem-solving ideas.
I’m not sure whether this problem occurs because of reaching a “certain age,” or whether it’s something inherent in the design of these thumbscrews. Whatever the cause, I hadn’t owned this Dewalt scroll saw long before I realized that loosening these blade-holding devices was going to be a challenge for me.
It might be me. I’ve never been strong. Once, when I was in high school, we were running track during PE and the coach asked someone to go inside and get a calendar to time me.
OK, so I have emotional scars. I didn’t let that hold me back. Being an athlete was never on my radar.
Now, there are at least a dozen ways to get around this challenge:
- You could booger up the thumbscrew with a pair of water pump pliers.
- You could replace the screw with a bolt you brazed a “T” onto.
- You could buy a wingnut with a bigger grip.
- Or, you could take the approach I took, which was to make a little wooden wrench that acts as a cheater bar.
Regardless of the approach, resist the temptation to over-do your leverage, lest you strip threads or otherwise break a crucial part of the saw.
Here’s how I made my little wrench:
Jim Randolph is a veterinarian in Long Beach, Mississippi. His earlier careers as lawn mower, dairy farmer, automobile mechanic, microwave communications electronics instructor and journeyman carpenter all influence his approach to woodworking. His favorite projects are furniture built for his wife, Brenda, and for their children and grandchildren. His and Brenda’s home, nicknamed Sticks-In-The-Mud, is built on pilings (sticks) near the wetlands (mud) on a bayou off Jourdan River. His shop is in the lower level of their home.Questions and comments on woodworking may be written below in the comments section. Questions about pet care should be directed to his blog on pet care, www.MyPetsDoctor.com. We regret that, because of high volume, not all inquiries can be answered personally.