Achieve crisp corners with budget-minded corner stays
Aligning corners presents a special challenge in woodworking because none of us seem to have enough hands for the task. Fortunately, the corner stays you see here will free up your hands to apply glue, drill pilot holes or drive screws without misalignment worries. They work better than a commercial corner clamp for holding a corner steady and leaving it exposed; plus they do it for a fraction of the cost.
The corner stays are made from 2" binder clips epoxied to a steel corner brace (available at most hardware stores and in a variety of sizes). To make a stay, cover a piece of 3⁄4 " scrap with waxed paper and align the angle connector with the edge of the scrap. Apply a quarter-size blob of epoxy and clamp the binder clip in place—pinching the angle connector against the scrap. Spread the epoxy so it encases the clip but make sure the binder clip handles can still pivot freely. Allow the epoxy to cure.
Once you’ve aligned a connector on a corner and clamped the free binder clip in place, the stay provides strong and square support. And, the rounded corner of the angle connector keeps it away from the inside corner of your project, so the metal won’t react with the glue and stain the joint.
—Dustin Davis, Cumberland, Md.