Skip to content Skip to sidebar Skip to footer

How to Use a Pocket Hole Jig | Kreg Pocket Screws | DIY Woodworking

how to use a pocket hole jig

Have you ever made wood projects like, kids table or chairs, work bench or cabinet, then surely you know about the drill and pocket hole jigs.

For newbies, pocket hole jig is a very super cool and vital woodworking tool for making angled holes in the wood boards. By using this even a novice can build resilient wood joints rapidly, can make nice cabinets as well as make firm tight with pockets hole jigs.

This article will provide you a brief understanding about pocket holes and you will learn how to use the Kreg Jig. This will build a confidence level in you and help you to make different things easily.  Let’s dive into them!


how to use a pocket hole jig

What is a pocket hole?

Pocket hole is basically used to join wood boards together by drilling an angled hole in them, this is called ‘pocket hole’.  

This helps to build a strong joint between two boards after screwing a nail in them. There are few benefits of pocket hole like; 

  • Pocket holes will help you to make super strong joints when wood boards are coupled together.
  • It is novice friendly; you can easily make settings using pocket holes and make joints in minutes. 
  • Pocket holes help to make the orientation of boards exceptionally straightforward.
  • It saves your time, as there is no need to wait for clamping and glue to dry. You can quickly make joints and move to the next step.

What is a pocket hole jig?

‘Pocket hole jig is a tool which helps to build pocket holes easily.’ 

For fine woodworking projects, pocket hole jig is a quick, strong and versatile option for joining the wood boards. It is basically clinched to one of the workpieces being combined and then you can drill through guides to make a precise pocket hole. 

So, typically pocket hole jigs provide you a drilling guide for perfect pocket holes. It depends on the style and size of a jig you are using that jig is either clamped to the material or material is clamped to the jig.  After that, a steel sleeve in the jig helps to keep the bit in the right place while the angled hole is being drilled.

Companies sell various types of pocket hole jigs, but Kreg Jig is typically a type of pocket hole jig that has simple settings to build a perfect pocket hole. In the market different types of Kreg jigs are available e.g. Kreg Foreman, K5, K4, Kreg 320 and  Kreg R3, you can buy them according to your work needs. We have made your hunt easy by listing the best pocket hole jigs on this site.

Different Parts of a Pocket hole Jig

There are 4 main parts of any pocket hole jig such as; 

  • A Jig itself
  • A router clamp (for holding the workpiece in place)
  • A drill bit with stop collar and hex key (for making the pocket hole)
  • A square drive bit to run the pocket hole screws

You may get extra accessories as it all depends upon which type of jig you are going to buy.  

How to use a Kreg Pocket hole Jig?

Step 1: Measure Thickness of Boards to Set the Pocket Hole Jigs 

Pocket hole jig thickness

Firstly, the most important step is to figure out the exact thickness of wood boards you are working on. In woodworking all boards are not made equally thick, but mostly, ½″, ¾″ (1x) or 1 ½″ (2x) thick boards are used for working. 

Usually pocket holes are made in one board while joining two boards. Keep in mind, for the good strength of pocket holes you must identify the exact thickness of that board you will be drilling. So, it is a noble idea to keep a measuring tape along with you during your project.

Note: Now you can easily and quickly check the thickness of boards using Kreg jigs like, kreg jig 720 and Kreg 320!

Step 2: Set Jig Height

using pocket hole jig

Now you already know about the thickness of your working board so, in the second step, you need to set the jig height in such a way that it matches the thickness of the working boards. 

Note: If you are joining two boards having different thicknesses then you must consider the smallest thickness.

Step 3: Set Drill Bit with Depth Collar on it 

drill bit depth

Pocket hole jigs kits contain a distinctive stepped drill bit and a collar on it. How deep you want to drill, it all depends on the setting of the collar on it. By following steps given below you can set them easily; 

  • Firstly, you will measure the exact depth.
  • Secondly, with the help of making a pocket hole jig, you will line up the edges of the drill bit. 
  • Lastly, you will set the stop collar on the drill bit and tighten it using a handy gauge or Allen wrench that comes with pocket hole jig accessories.

Note: You can adjust the collar according to your need if you aren’t working on specific thicknesses of boards. 

Step 4: Clamp and Drill the Pocket Holes

Pocket Hole Created

Once your stop collar and jig are both set for your desired board thickness, then in the next step you need to position the board and clamp it where you want to drill the pocket hole on the jig. 

Drill Guide for Hole Placement on Jig

For drilling the pocket holes, you can easily find the guideline mark of the top of the jig.

  • For 3 ½″ wide boards, mark 2 outside holes and centre the board and drill those 2 holes. 
  • For the board 2 ½″ wide, centre the board with two left holes and remember one hole must be apart from the other and drill them. 
  • For the board 1 ½″ wide, centre the board and mark two right holes that must close to each other and drill them. 

Now you can drill the pocket holes easily through the guide holes made in the jig. When you reach the desired height the stop collar will automatically stop the drill.

Note: For stronger joints you must make at least two pocket holes in the workpiece and be sure to drill each hole until the stop collar starts touching with the jig!

Step 5: Assemble the Boards

joinery jigs

After drilling right holes and choosing correct screws it’s time to assemble the boards.

In the last step, work pieces are attached together using the special square drive bit and pocket hole screws and wood glue. 

Note: As wood glue is not required but for stronger hold it’s not a bad idea to use it.  Moreover, an impact driver can be used to drive the screws.

Tips and Tricks to Make a Perfect Pocket Hole 

Here I’m sharing some tips which can help you to build a perfect pocket hole. 

  • Use Clamps during your project.
  • Double check the settings and measure thickness. 
  • Use wood glue for stronger hold. 

Now you are ready to make perfect pocket hole joints. It will be a strong and nice way to join the boards without waiting for glue to dry.

About Us

CNC router Hub aims to provide you a complete guide on buying Computerized Numerical Control Machine and its related components by providing detailed insight after testing and using the routers in our dedicated lab. Furthermore, doesn’t accept sponsorship and is not biased towards any brand. All the opinions and reviews are neutrally established after testing the machine in the laboratory.

Amazon Affiliate Partnership


We are a partner with through their Amazon Affiliate Program and we may get a commission for any sale that goes through our site.

Cncrouterhub© 2024. All Rights Reserved.