Woodworking Vocabulary


Router: A router is a tool used for cutting and shaping wood that features an adjustable cutting bit to cut grooves, curves, shapes and edges into the material. The cutter bit is held in place by a collar on the end of a shaft which can be adjusted up or down for more shallow or deeper cutting.

Drill Press: A drill press is a stationary tool used to accurately and precisely create holes in wood. It consists of a heavy base with an adjustable platform to position workpieces, an upright arm which holds the drill bit at different angles, and a motor that rotates the bit into the material.

Table Saw: A table saw is a large stationary power-tool with an adjustable blade that can be raised or lowered to make precise cuts in wood. The blade protrudes through an opening in the tabletop, allowing users to make 90-degree rips (longitudinal cuts) and cross cuts (transverse cuts). The most popular table saws feature movable fences attached to either side of the blade, allowing for perfect straight angled cuts across different widths.

Planer: A planer is a power toolused to flatten boards or reduce thicknesses by shaving off portions of material using blades that are fixed on rotary shafts. Planers create exactly parallel surfaces but can be used for other shaping operations as well. They are available in portable hand-held models as well as stationary models with large tables and chutes

Types of Woodworking Terms

Joint: A joint is an area where two components are joined together to create a single unit. Common types include mortise and tenon joints, dovetail joints, dowel joints, butt joints and tongue and groove joints. Mortise and tenon joints use a rectangular hole in one component that fits the tenon of another component. Dovetail joints are formed by using interlocking teeth on each component that can bear heavy loads. Dowel joints involve inserting aligned dowels into pre-drilled holes in both components. Butt joints are the simplest type of joint where two pieces of wood are butted up against each other with glue or screws to secure them in place. Tongue and groove joinery involves a tongue part of one piece fitting into the groove of another piece for extra strength in securing the pieces together.

Common Woodworking Vocabulary

Miter Joint: A miter joint, also sometimes referred to as a beveled joint, is created when two pieces of wood are cut at an angle so that the cut faces meet each other in the corner, forming a 45-degree angle. Miter joints can be secured using wood glue, nails, screws, or dowels.

Woodworking Shop Tools

Illustrations of miter joints can include examples of how they’re typically joined together with nails or screws, along with pictures demonstrating the overall appearance once assembled. Video demonstrations could show an example of how to accurately measure and cut the pieces to form a proper miter joint.

Rabbet Joint: A rabbet joint is formed when two pieces of wood combine together after they have had a groove cut out at the end of one board that fits into the side of another board next to it. To make this type of joint stronger and secure better against movement and damage from moisture, nails or screws should generally be used at either end as well as being strengthened with wood glue.

Illustrations for this type of joint could include visuals that demonstrate which direction the cuts need to be made in order to fit together properly; diagrams showcasing different rabbet sizes and profiles used in most popular building projects; and photographs highlighting different types of finishes commonly applied over top such as paint or stain. Video demonstrations could demonstrate step-by-step instructions on how to measure out and make accurate cuts needed for a secure rabbet joint.

How to Use and Understand Woodworking Vocabulary

Woodworking is a rewarding hobby and pastime, but there are a lot of terms that can be confusing. If you want to learn more about woodworking and understand the vocabulary used, here are some tips to help you out.

First and foremost, research the kinds of projects you may want to attempt. This will help you get an idea of the materials needed for the project and all the associated terminology. When researching these projects, take notes and familiarize yourself with the words being used that have to do with all aspects of woodworking from selecting lumber to finishing touches.

Second, watch tutorials or attend a seminar on woodworking. These can be extremely helpful in understanding more about techniques and tools requires as well as common terms related to them. Additionally, participating in seminars allows for networking opportunities with experienced individuals who may further enrich your understanding of woodworking and its vocabulary.

Third, use youtube videos and blogs available online to understand processes such as lumber selection, proper tooling usage and different finishes available in woodworking. Watching these videos will give insight into what equipment is used for specific tasks or processes as well as better understanding of how they should be done correctly. As an example – when learning how to join boards together while creating a project like a table, combining either mortise-and-tenon joints or dowel joints are most commonly used methods; these terms refer specifically to certain pieces of equipment contributing important technical steps in joining boards together correctly.

How to Make a Vase Woodworking

Finally, practice woodworking on little scrap pieces until you become comfortable enough with your knowledge to start planning larger projects down the line!

Resources for Further Woodworking Vocabulary

Online woodworking courses, classes and tutorials are becoming increasingly popular as they provide a great way to start or further your woodworking skills at your own pace in the comfort of your home. There are courses for pressure and steam bending, lutherie making, furniture making, joinery techniques, carpentry basics and much more available to suit any experience level. Alongside these courses is also a growing range of terms and vocabulary associated with different tools and techniques within the craft which learners can become familiar with and use during their own projects. Such terms include ‘tool sharpening’, ‘edge joint’, ‘shoulder cut’, ‘skew chisel’and many more. By taking an online course or class, learners will begin to build upon their existing knowledge base and learn new words, technical terms and phrases used in woodworking while developing their craftsmanship. With each lesson building upon previous knowledge, tuition provided will allow access to a wealth of information assisting in the better performance of tool usage as well as project outcomes.


Woodworking is a craft that uses many different skills and techniques, and it has its own unique vocabulary words. Knowing the various woodworking vocabulary words is essential, as this knowledge can help with understanding written instructions or explanations more clearly. To put woodworking vocabulary into practice, one could read woodworking articles or books, watch tutorials or videos to better understand the terms used in relation to the craft, join a woodworking community for further education and discussion about the different elements of the trade, or take part in hands-on projects to build familiarity with all aspects of the hobby. By gaining an understanding of these key terms, one will be able to communicate more easily among fellow practitioners of this creative craft and understand projects more easily from start to finish.

Send this to a friend