Q: We're planning to install expensive cherry crown molding and can't afford to make any mistakes. Do you have any suggestions for making sure this project goes smoothly?
—Velma Withers, Elwood, NE
A: When installing any wood trim, the key to making accurate cuts is to make clear marks so that you know exactly where to put the miter-saw blade. This is a problem on dark-stained wood or naturally dark woods, like cherry or walnut, because a pencil line is hard to see.
So instead of using a pencil, mark your cuts with a utility knife. It makes supersharp lines that stand out clearly on dark wood. This trick is also useful when laying dark-stained flooring.