Australian Woodsmith 4th December 2019

Super Paper

Ok, so it’s not paper, but over the years I have found many uses for this versatile material known as High Impact Polystyrene, or HIPS. It’s thin and flexible, yet stiff and dimensionally stable. It’s tear resistant, waterproof and can be marked with a pen or pencil. Plus, it’s easy to cut with scissors or a knife. Best of all, HIPS is sold in large sheets that are relatively inexpensive.

UNLIMITED USES. It’s very simple to make full-size patterns of curved project parts, like the chair leg shown above. The patterns can be rolled up for transport, or stored flat in minimal space.

Because of HIPS' low cost, it’s an attractive material for use in one-time applications. A small piece can be edged with pinking shears to make a glue spreader. Another can be used to mix small amounts of epoxy. Pick up some of this versatile material at a hobby store and you’re sure to find several uses of your own.

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SAFETY IN THE WORKSHOP Safety devices, such as riving knives, guards on table saws and guards over router bits have been deliberately left out of the line drawings in Australian Woodsmith projects in order to make them easier to follow. It goes without saying that where safety devices have been supplied by the manufacturers you should use them. We encourage the use of push sticks as good work practice.
    Exercise vigilance and the greatest of care when using power tools, whether stationary or portable. Keep all your tools sharp and well maintained. Wear protective eyewear, a dust mask and a hearing protector when appropriate. By limiting distractions and developing safe work practices you will go a long way to avoiding workshop accidents. So, work safe fellow woodworkers.  -Editor
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