How Is Math Used in Carpentry?

Math is used extensively for many different aspects of carpentry. Some of the types of mathematics used include basic addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, fractions, algebra and geometry.

During rough framing of a house, the most commonly used math concepts are addition, multiplication and fractions. In order to correctly space studs in walls, a carpenter must be able to identify multiples of 12 inches, 16 inches or 18 inches, depending on the design specifications of the building. Geometry is also used extensively in the framing of a building in order to ensure that walls, floors and ceilings are built square to one another.

Finish carpentry also requires math to complete the job. Finish carpenters must be able to add the lengths of materials needed together so that the correct amount of trim can be purchased. The finish carpenter must also be able to measure angles and divide angles so that miter joints align with one another. A strong understanding of angles, fractions and compound angles is necessary for a carpenter to be able to produce quality work.

Finally, a carpenter must know enough math to be able to calculate the labor required to complete a job, the materials required, and how much the customer should be charged. Knowing how much to charge a customer is an integral part of carpentry.