"Core Curriculum: Introductory Craft Skills," Vocabulary from Module Four

Learn these words to gain some real-life insights into the construction industry. This list focuses on power tools.

Here are links to our lists for the trainee guide: Module One, Module Two, Module Three, Module Four, Module Five, Module Six, Module Seven, Module Eight, Module Nine
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Full list of words from this list:

  1. current
    a flow of electricity through a conductor
    Electric tools - These tools are powered by electricity. They are operated from either an alternating current (AC) source (such as a wall receptacle) or a direct current (DC) source (such as a battery).
  2. trigger
    a device that activates or causes something to happen
    If a power tool is equipped with a trigger lock, do not use the lock. A trigger lock is a small lever, switch, or part that can be used to activate a locking catch or spring to hold a power tool trigger in the operating mode even when the trigger is released.
    The farther back the trigger of a variable-speed drill is pulled, the faster the drill spins.
  3. accessory
    a supplementary component that improves capability
    A power drill is most commonly used to make holes by spinning drill bits into wood, metal, plastic, and other materials. However, with different attachments and accessories, the power drill can be also used as a sander, polisher, screwdriver, grinder, or countersink.
    Countersink: A bit or drill used to set the head of a screw at or below the surface of the material.
  4. task
    a specific piece of work required to be done
    Power drills use replaceable bits for different drilling tasks.
    Twist drill bits are used to drill wood and plastics at high speeds or to drill metal at a lower speed. A Forstner bit is used on wood and is particularly good for boring a flat-bottom hole. A paddle bit or spade bit is also used in wood. A masonry bit, which has a carbide tip, is used in concrete, stone, slate, and ceramic material.
  5. auger
    a hand tool used to bore holes
    The auger bit is used for drilling wood and other soft materials, but not for drilling metal.
    The chuck of the drill holds the drill bit. The smooth part of a drill bit that fits into the chuck is called a shank.
  6. interchangeable
    permitting mutual substitution without loss of function
    Keyed chucks are opened and closed using a chuck key. Chuck keys are typically interchangeable in design, but there are several different sizes.
    Most cordless drills are equipped with keyless chucks except the most heavy-duty models.
  7. mount
    attach to a support
    An electromagnetic drill is a portable drill mounted on an electromagnetic base.
    Used for drilling thick metal, the electromagnetic drill is placed on a metal surface, where the energized magnetic base will hold the drill in place.
  8. moderate
    being within reasonable or average limits
    Hold the drill with both hands and apply only moderate pressure when drilling.
    Reduce the pressure when the bit is about to emerge from the other side of the work, especially when drilling metal.
  9. revolution
    a single complete turn
    The drill motor should operate at approximately the same revolutions per minute (rpm) as it does when it is not loaded.
  10. vent
    a hole for the escape of gas, air, or liquid
    Keep the drill's air vent clean with a small brush. Airflow is crucial to the life expectancy of a drill.
  11. rotate
    turn on or around an axis or a center
    A hammer drill has a light pounding action that enables it to drill into concrete, brick, or tile. The bit rotates and hammers at the same time, allowing faster drilling in these materials than a regular drill.
  12. pneumatic
    relating to or using air or a similar gas
    Pneumatic power tools are powered by compressed air. An air hose transfers the compressed air from an air compressor to the tool. Pneumatic tools tend to have more power for their weight than comparable electric tools.
  13. compact
    having a short and solid form or stature
    Pneumatic drills have many of the same parts, controls, and uses as electric drills. Since there is no motor, they are generally more compact in size.
  14. compress
    squeeze or push together
    Pneumatic impact wrenches are power tools that are used to fasten, tighten, and loosen nuts and bolts. As with a pneumatic drill, a pneumatic impact wrench must be connected with a hose to an air compressor.
  15. inadvertently
    without knowledge or intention
    When connecting the tool, make sure that the pneumatic connection between the tool and the supply hose is good, and install a whip check as required. A whip check is a safety attachment that is used to prevent whiplashing in hoses that are inadvertently uncoupled.
  16. supply
    circulate or distribute or equip with
    Before changing attachments or performing any maintenance on a pneumatic drill or pneumatic impact wrench, make sure that the air supply is turned off and the tool is physically disconnected from the supply hose.
  17. arbor
    a shaft that serves as an axis for larger rotating parts
    The hole in the center of a circular saw blade fits onto the arbor, or shaft, of the saw.
    Some common types of saw blades include the following:
    •Rip - designed to cut with the grain of the wood, its square chisel teeth are generally larger than other types of blade teeth.
    •Crosscut - designed to cut across the grain of the wood at a 90-degree angle, its teeth is finer than a rip.
    •Combination - designed to cut hard or soft wood, either with or across the grain, it features both rip and crosscut teeth with deep troughs (gullets) between the teeth.
  18. embedded
    enclosed firmly in a surrounding mass
    Nail cutter - This blade has large carbide-tipped teeth that can make rough cuts through nails that may be embedded in the work.
    Carbide is a very hard material made of carbon and one or more heavy metals. A nonferrous metal cutter also has carbide-tipped teeth for cutting aluminum, copper, lead, and brass.
  19. unavoidable
    impossible to evade
    The saw kerf is an unavoidable result of sawing any material, so it must be considered for each and every cut.
    Kerf: The channel created by a saw blade passing through the material, which is equal to the width of the blade teeth.
  20. intricate
    having many complexly arranged elements; elaborate
    Saber saws, sometimes referred to as jig saws, have very fine blades. This makes the saw an effective tool for doing delicate and intricate work, such as cutting out patterns or irregular shapes from wood or thin, soft metals.
  21. reciprocate
    alternate the direction of motion of
    The reciprocating saw is used for jobs that require brute strength.
    An excellent choice for general demolition work, the reciprocating saw can cut through walls or ceilings and create openings for windows, plumbing lines, and more.
  22. lubricate
    make slippery or smooth
    When cutting metal pieces, use a metal-cutting blade. Lubricate the blade with an agent such as beeswax, to help make tight turns and to reduce the chance of breaking the blade.
  23. portable
    easily or conveniently transported
    The portable band saw can cut pipe, metal, plastics, wood, and irregularly shaped materials.
    The portable band saw generally cuts best at a low speed. Using a high speed will cause the blade's teeth to rub rather than cut. This can create heat through friction, which will cause the blade to wear out quickly.
  24. pivot
    turn on an axis
    The saw blade of a standard miter saw pivots horizontally from the rear of the table and locks in position to cut angles from 0 to 45 degrees right and left.
    The difference between the power miter saw and the compound miter saw is that the blade on the compound miter saw can be tilted vertically, allowing the saw to be used to make a compound cut (combined bevel and miter cut).
  25. abrasive
    a substance that smooths or wears down a surface
    An abrasive cutoff saw, also referred to as a chop saw or cutoff saw, can be used to make straight cuts or angular cuts through materials such as angle iron, flat bar, and channel.
  26. friction
    the resistance when a body is moved in contact with another
    When the saw is in operation, the blade spins at such a high speed that the resulting friction is hot enough to burn through the material.
  27. grind
    reduce to small pieces or particles by pounding or abrading
    Grinding tools can power all kinds of abrasive wheels, brushes, buffs, drums, bits, saws, and discs. These wheels come in a variety of materials and grits.
    The grit on a grinding wheel is a granular, sand-like material used to make sandpaper and similar materials abrasive. To test the condition of a grinding wheel, mount the wheel on a rod and tap it. A clear ring means the wheel is in good condition; a dull thud means the wheel is in poor condition and should be disposed of.
  28. configuration
    an arrangement of parts or elements
    Grinders are available in various configurations.
    Angle grinders, with rotating grind discs set at a right angle to the motor shaft, are used to grind away hard, heavy materials and to grind surfaces such as pipes, plates, or welds. End grinders, sometimes called horizontal or pencil grinders, are smaller and used to smooth the inside of materials, such as pipe. Detail grinders have an arbor that extends from the motor shaft onto which small attachments, called points, can be mounted to smooth and polish intricate metallic work.
  29. stationary
    not capable of being moved
    Bench grinders are electrically powered stationary grinding machines.
    Bench grinders usually have two grinding wheels that are used for grinding, rust removal, and metal buffing. They are also great for renewing worn edges and maintaining the sharp edges of cutting tools.
  30. versatile
    competent in many areas and able to adapt with ease
    Grinders are versatile pieces of equipment. While the primary uses of a typical grinder are to grind, cut, sand, and polish materials, numerous attachments and accessories can be used to extend a grinder's capability.
    Some of the more common accessories are wire brushes, cup brushes and stones, flap discs, cutting wheels, and polishing and buffing wheels. Some grinders can also be equipped with a cutoff wheel.
  31. fasten
    attach to
    Nailers use specific types of nails depending on the material to be fastened. The nails come in coils and in strips and are loaded into the nail gun.
    Also called pneumatically powered nailers, nail guns greatly speed up the installation of materials such as wallboard, molding, framing members, and shingles.
  32. actuate
    put in motion
    A powder-actuated tool is a low-velocity fastening system powered by gunpowder cartridges, or loads. The tools are used to drive steel pins or threaded steel studs directly into masonry and steel.
  33. demolition
    the act of destroying completely
    The pavement breaker is used for large-scale demolition work, such as tearing down brick and concrete walls and breaking up concrete or pavement.
  34. hydraulic
    moved or operated or effected by liquid
    Hydraulic jacks are portable devices used for a wide variety of purposes. They can be used to move or lift heavy equipment and other heavy material, to position heavy loads precisely, and to straighten or bend frames.
    Hydraulic jacks have two basic parts: a pump and a cylinder (sometimes called a ram).
  35. manual
    a small handbook
    Always read the manufacturer's manual for any new power tool being used.
Created on October 31, 2015 (updated November 5, 2015)

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