Wing nuts can be great conveniences, but two major problems interfere with their usage.

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woodworking technique shop tip

Wing nuts can be great conveniences, but two major problems interfere with their usage:

1. Too often you have to make a special trip to the hardware store to get the size you need.

2. Those metal wings are hard on your fingers, especially if you wish to tighten the nuts securely. Sometimes, you need a pair of pliers to get the necessary leverage.

Combine a hexagonal nut and a scrap of wood to make an oversized wing nut as shown. Bore the upper hole slightly smaller than the corner-to-corner diameter of the nut, and drill the lower hole for the bolt 164 " larger than the bolt's diameter. Apply epoxy glue to the walls of the nut hole and press or tap the nut into place. This technique also works well on bolt heads.
—Paul R. Cook, Westfield, N.Y