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DIY projects may sound like a simple way to have that needed shed or carport, but without the right preparation, the experience can be a nightmare.

Even smaller-scaled assembly projects, like furniture, require organisation in order to save time and to finish up with a professional-looking piece. Here are some tips for improving efficiency, avoiding accidents, and building confidence as a DIY’er.

Safety First

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Safety while building, even if it is just light assembly. Too many people have ended up in the emergency room from failing to take precautions.

  1. Protect your eyes, face, hands, arms and feet, for the job at hand
  2. If using a hammer, wear hard toe shoes, and cover those eyes with protective eye wear
  3. Wear a long-sleeved shirt when moving large pieces of wood and metal, and put on the work gloves
  4. Prepare a first-aid kit, to have close, for injuries that can occur- Eye wash, hydrogen peroxide for disinfecting, antiseptic cream, band-aids, and clean cotton cloths.
  5. Remember to use insect spray and have a can of bug spray handy, just in case you find a nest of resting bees or wasps.

While these measures may seem a bit extreme, the proof comes after washing off and finding splinters, cuts, and bruises.

Designating a Construction Area

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Construction crews learn this lesson, early on, when beginning a new project. Unless there is a designated area for keeping tools, materials, and safety gear, chaos is sure to occur. Finding a hammer, required bolts, a pair of gloves, or even a first-aid kit, can turn into a two-hour game, wasting precious time.

When working outside, grass can become a jungle where tools and screws will hide. Lay down a tarp or coloured plastic liner, keeping items easy to spot and off of the dampness of the ground. Larger materials, like wood and metal strips, should be close by, and lain out in groupings of similar pieces. For tiny pieces, such as nails, screws, and washers, keep a few old coffee cans for convenient spotting.

Have tarps and anchors ready to use for when a sudden downpour happens. Drying off tools and materials after a rainstorm not only wastes time, but also can ruin articles. Also have an empty drum or large box for debris, and use it.

Read the Instructions

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Reading the instructions may sound like a no brainer, but is necessary for a great job. In fact, do not only read the instructions the day before your project begins, but really…

STUDY THEM!

Next, place them in a plastic sleeve so you can have them beside you, on the job.

The Right Materials and Supplies

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Not all kits come with everything needed to complete a project. Go through the list of materials included, and ask yourself if anything is missing. If you are working from blueprints, stock up on more materials than you need. They can always be returned. Running out of timber or critical pieces, is one of the worst feelings in the world. Everything has to stop, while you run to the hardware store, and then start up again.

While many of these steps may sound simple and unnecessary, they play a large part in assembly and building. By following these tips for your next project, you will not have to rely on a bad experience of scrapes and cuts, running out of screws, or losing essential tools, to know the best way to start a project.

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