What is a Countersunk Screw and How Do You Do That?

A Quick and Easy Tutorial on How To Countersink Screws

If you are new to woodworking, you may have seen the term “countersunk screw” used in joinery. What exactly is a countersunk screw? Why would a countersunk screw be used? I’ll explain this method and even show you  how to countersink screws!

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What is a countersunk screw?

A countersunk screw is a screw that is “sunk” into a piece of lumber. The head will sit below the surface of the material and it can easily be filled with a wood plug or filler. Bolts and large hex-head screws can also be countersunk. Each require a special countersink bit for the best results.

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Why would a countersunk screw be used?

A countersunk screw is one of the many methods of joining one piece of material to another.  It makes a very strong, tight joint and is used in places where other joinery is not practical. In other words, if you don’t want to have to fill a bazillion pocket holes, a countersunk screw can be used. The hole is smaller and easier to fill. Most of the plans on my site can be constructed using countersunk screws instead of pocket hole joinery with just a few modifications!

How to countersink screws

First, you will need a countersink bit. I recommend purchasing a countersink bit set. This way, you have a different size bit for different size screws. (The link goes directly to a site of which I am an affiliate. If the link is clicked and a sale is made, I receive a commission.) A countersink bit has a regular drill bit at the end to drill a pilot hole as well as a step or two to create a larger hole for the screw head and a plug to fit into.

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Mark the position on the board for the countersunk hole. Drill the hole being careful to to move or wiggle the bit as it can break. I know this from experience and have broken plenty of bits!

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Insert the screws and join the boards together.

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Fill the holes as desired. That is all there is to it! I hope my tutorial on how to countersink screws is easy! As always, if you have any questions, please contact me at cher {at} designsbystudioc {dot} com!


This post contains links to a site of which I am an affiliate. What that means is if the link is clicked and a purchase is made, I will get a commission of that sale. Rest assured I would only direct my readers to sites I shop at myself!

Originally posted 2014-02-13 08:00:31.