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Hammering nails is an ancient and tricky skill. It involves a floating arm that’s moving at high velocity, leaving a lot of room for error– not to mention that the target is quite small.

There are also concerns about the material you’re driving through. Its hardness, grain, and knottiness are all things to take into consideration.

Some might think that bolts and screws are the way to go all the time, but this just isn’t true. When framing a building or making something that requires a large amount of fasteners, nails are often the way to go. Also, the use of finish nails on a piece makes for a very clean, polished look.

Here are some tips to help you out when hammering them home.

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Michael Colombo

In addition to being an online editor for MAKE Magazine, Michael Colombo works in fabrication, electronics, sound design, music production and performance (Yes. All that.) In the past he has also been a childrens’ educator and entertainer, and holds a Masters degree from NYU’s Interactive Telecommunications Program.

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