Re: Personal preference: Pilot holes before wood screws?
Use pilot holes, I have tapered bits that also will cut for countersinking the screw heads. Bees wax is a great lube for installing screws. I have switched to the square head screws for work like this, no more of the camming out that happens so often with phillips screws. You can find a box of these with the driver bit, I have a box sitting here that are 2" long #8 size, intended for deck construction.