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CraftID Installation Tutorial

Installing a CraftID is simple.  Here are a few easy steps to an attractive installation. This tutorial is mainly targeted at woodworkers.  We will address other materials over time.

Safety First

This tutorial involves using a drill press to drill a shallow hole or motise for your CraftID.  Be sure you know how to safely use your drill press and securely hold your work piece in place during any drilling operations.

Decide where

Most people place their CraftID in the center of the bottom of their work.  That's easy for woodturners (depending on your piece), but if you are making a square jewelry box or anything not round then you may need to give this some thought.  Your CraftID should accentuate the finished look. Even when it is not normally visible it is still very important to make the best design decision on placing your CraftID.

Embed or Attach?

Most woodworkers embed their CraftID rather than just attach it to a surface.  When attaching (gluing on a surface), make sure the edges are well attached so nothing will get under the CraftID and pry it off.  To embed a CraftID here are the easy steps in a nutshell.

  • Mark the center where the CraftID will be embedded or inserted.
  • Pre-drill the hole to get your depth gauge set.
  • Set your depth gauge based on your CraftID thickness.
  • Drill your hole.
  • Ease the edge.
  • Insert your CraftID.

Mark the Center

CraftIDTutorial-CenterBefore beginning to drill make certain you have a mark or indent at the centerpoint. If you are installing a CraftID on a turned piece just leave a very small divot in the bottom center (if you plan to center the CraftID).  Otherwise using an awl is a nice way to mark the center so that your drill bit doesn't wander from your intended center.  Keep in mind that if the point of installation is concave you will need to be careful if your Forstner bit edges will contact the work before the center spur.  This would be an unusual case, but could happen.  You might consider masking the area before you begin to drill (making sure you still have your center mark). This may make it easier to keep any excess glue off your work piece as you glue the CraftID in place.

Pre-drill the Hole

CraftIDTutorial-PreDrillYou will probably want to insert your CraftID as a last step before finish is applied.  This is because you might want to do a little sanding as we'll discuss later.  But, finish sanding your piece before you drill the hole so that the depth you drill is not diminished by further sanding.

Your Forstner bit should of course be the same diameter as your CraftID (1", 1.5", 2" or whatever yours happens to be).  The depth of your hole should ideally be just slightly deeper than the thickness of your CraftID. This will present the CraftID just shy of the finished surface. By design the outer edges of a Forstner bit will contact your workpiece before the actual cutting edges (those flat ones inside the bit).  So you first want to carefully pre-drill the hole only until the cutting edges begin to touch the work.  The edges will already have drilled into the work.  But you want to stop when the cutting edges just touch the wood.

Set Your Depth

CraftIDTutorial-SetDepth1Now that you have your bit's cutting edges resting on the surface of your work piece it is time to set the depth of your cut.  Your drill press will vary.  Mine has a stop block.  If yours has a rotary stop you may need to measure and set the depth another way.

Method 1 - Using the stop block

With the drill bit's cutting edges touching the surface of the wood I then place the CraftID between the stop block and its stop.  This way there is no measuring.  Whatever thickness the CraftID might be it will correctly set your depth.  If your drill press is anything like mine (not so exact) the depth this drills to will be close but probably a little shallow of where you want to be.  Just adjust the stop block accordingly to go slightly deeper.  And, be sure to check the depth of the drilled hole frequently.  Done carefully this is quick and makes a precise depth hole.

Method 2 - Alternative Depth Setting

As I have time I'll research some other methods with newer drill presses.

Drill the Hole

Now with the depth stop set drill the hole.  Measure the depth by test fitting the CraftID.  Ideally the hole should be drilled so that the edge of the CraftID is just below the edge of the work.  This 'slight' inset is up to you, but if you want to ease the edge of the hole as described below this will make the inserted CraftID look very finished and it will be slight protected by being inset from the bottom of the piece.  If you have CraftIDs that are filled and you plan to sand them flush with the bottom or surface of your work then obviously you will need to drill the hole more shallow and leave the CraftID just proud of (higher than) the surrounding surface.

Ease the Edge

CraftIDTutorial-EaseEdgeIf you are inserting a CraftID just shy of (inset from) the surrounding surface it really looks professional if you very slightly ease (round over) the edge of the hole before you insert the CraftID. Leaving a hard edge that the Forstner bit makes can look harsh and unfinished.  All it takes is a few seconds with some fine sandpaper to ease that edge. Presuming you've already sanded the rest of the work piece probably a piece of 220 grit or higher sandpaper will work perfectly and not leave unnecessary scratches elsewhere.

Insert Your CraftID

CraftIDTutorial-InsertCraftIDPermanently inserting your CraftID is easily done with a few drops of glue in the bottom of your hole. You may want to glue it in as soon as the hole is ready or you migth want to do some initial finishing and finish sanding before inserting the CraftID.  That will depend on your piece.

If your CraftID is tight in the hole you just drilled you can carefully sand the edges of the CraftID. I suggest placing the CraftID on a flat scrap piece and carefully sanding as you rotate the CraftID.

If the hole you've drilled is larger than the CraftID probably the best solution is to mix some fine saw dust from the work piece (or something just slightly lighter) with some glue and use the resulting 'paste' as a filler.  Just be careful to wipe off all the excess glue that might squeeze out around the edge so that it doesn't fill in your CraftID.  And, of course make sure you clean all glue off the surface of your work piece so that the glue does not interfere with your finishing.  If you used masking tape to mask off the area first this should be an easy cleanup.

Reprinting and Publishing - This tutorial was created and written by Paul Proffitt.  You may reproduce this tutorial without further explicit permission as long as you include the following biographical information.

Biography - Paul Proffitt owns Whispered Images, a custom gifts and woodworking and laser engraving company located in Suwanee, GA.  CraftID is a copyrighted name created by and used exclusively by Whispered Images to make and market this product. Please visit our website at to order or for more information.

Copyright 2011 Paul Proffitt - All rights Reserved