David Marks choice of joinery

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my condolences for the folks you are now related to....
wrote:

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On Fri, 02 Jan 2004 09:37:55 -0500, Greg G. wrote:

<SNIP> But apparently, although integral

I use loose tenons a great deal for several reasons not least of which is I find it much faster than classic tenon joinery. I think one should be very careful about using a different material for the tenons than is used in the pieces being joined. This can lead to problems of unequal expansion/contraction characteristics thereby weakening joint over time.
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It is a valid technique that I suspect he wanted to demonstrate on the program(you can't do every project in the same way or you will bore your audience) and it is easier than a regular mortise and tenon joint.
And then there is that old thing of doing something just because you want to.
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Contributing Editor, Woodwork, A Magazine for All Woodworkers
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brought forth from the murky depths:

It's not. Strength in the testing was identical.

If you have a mortising machine, you need never make tenons again unless you want through tenons.

Yeah, there's that, too.
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You should get a dish heater.

Or tape one of those photos to the dish. Any one of them should do.
Oh, S&#$, SWMBO walked in while I was looking at that site... There will be hell to pay now... Gee, thanks, Larry... <g>
Greg G.
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On Fri, 02 Jan 2004 21:27:46 GMT, Larry Jaques
<SNIP>

Why can't you have thru tenons? Seems to me you can just glue the loose tenon in one piece and then just treat it as a regular tenon for purposes of thru tenoning. You'll have to be careful to cut the through mortise from the exposed side towards the joint side in case of some tearout.
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brought forth from the murky depths:

I suppose that's possible, too. Point taken.
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One reason for a loose tenon, especially in projects in projects with lots of them, is the tenon's can be made of less expensive secondary wood.
e G. snipped-for-privacy@heirloom-woods.net Heirloom Woods www.heirloom-woods.net

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On Fri, 02 Jan 2004 14:16:35 GMT, Lazarus Long

You make it by cutting two mortices, not a mortice and tenon. If your workshop is tooled up to cut mortices (maybe a router and jig) then this is easier.
The tenon may be stronger timber.
M&T joints are weakest (if well designed) across the neck of the tenon. A long-grain joint along the sides of a loose tenon should be far stronger.
You can use the "beadlock" system with loose tenons, where the mortices are routed and left with their rounded corners. The matching loose tenons are commercial items, which is a clever marketing idea.

Long sliding dovetails are hard to make accurately, and they really do need a router. This might be a consideration for a wide-audience TV show.

I can't see Chinese joinery making good TV. It's complex to do, but it's hard to understand by looking at it (so much is hidden when assembled) and most of the skill to it is doing a simple task very, very well, rather than some exciting new gadget that you can easily demonstrate.
Always remember that the function of woodworking TV is to make TV, not to make furniture.
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I've often wondered about Marks' choices of joinery too. I think what it comes down to is there is no "right" method and on his show he is demonstrating a variety of methods. It always irritates me when he uses that multi router, because, well, I wish I had one. :-)
As far as mortise and loose tenons, I like to think about them as "super" biscuits. And biscuit joinery itself, based on breakage testing, is incredibly strong.
I watched that bookcase episode too, and I agree that blind sliding dovetails would have worked also, but probably no better than his mortise and loose tenoning.
Brian.

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<snip>
Then again, in this particular show, he did not use the multi-router. Instead, he did all the mortice and loose tenon work with a plunge router, something we can get at reasonable cost.
Cheers, Eric
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Yes, exactly. That's how I do it.
Brian.
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wrote:

But what is a biscuit joint ? Multiple skinny tenons, or an edge-glued joint with alignment guides ?
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On Fri, 02 Jan 2004 17:36:33 +0000, Andy Dingley

yes ; ^ )

OK, care to explain that?
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Whether loose or integral, holding the static weight of books is not too great a challenge for either of these joints. Loose tenons are easier. You cut the stock to exactly the size of the shelf width. You don't have to worry about uneven shoulders because you only cut mortices.

A valid choice. I can cut mortices without power tools, but I don't have a convenient way to cut a sliding dovetail. I think I've seen a specialty hand plane for that, but it seems like a lot of work for little added benefit. The shelves I recently built for SWMBO, I used a blind dados. They don't appear to be falling apart.

Marks really like loose tenons. Guess that's reason enough. The purpose of joinery is to bind two boards together in a manner strong enough for the intended use. In this regard, he succeeds admirably.
Of course, in my opinion, those bookshelves are ugly. They look top heavy. I like a lot of his stuff, but my other gripe about his projects is often the colors just don't work for me. The colors often clash. Contrast is fine, but if the tones clash, the result is ugly. I recently finished some laminated bread knives, made as Christmas presents. In one combination, I used Padauk and Red Oak. The red tones of the Red Oak made it a good contrast to the red Padauk. I I had instead used White Oak, I believe the brown tones in the White Oak would have clashed with the Padauk.
Cheers, Eric
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It's not. The strength is the same. See the report on the PDF that someone already posted a link to.
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You've heard that if your only tool is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail.
I guess that if you've got a Multi-Router, every joinery solution looks like a loose tenon. :-)
Seriously though, I'd have to say that most craftsmen we think of as "masters" have picked a technique, mastered it, and adapt their designs to the methods they know best. David Marks is no exception.
Kevin
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On Fri, 02 Jan 2004 14:16:35 GMT, Lazarus Long

To all:
Thanks for all the replies. It is apparent that there is no one proper technique in this situation, simply a matter of using one that you like and are comfortable doing. Someone pointed out that the loose tenons illustrated are similar to using biscuits. I've done that, the project hasn't falled apart, so strength isn't the issue.
Replies in another forum also pointed out the problem of project size in some cases and another problem of grain direction in others as cases of a loose tenon being a better choice than integral.
I assumed David had gotten used to the technique from that multi router he's got. It's really no problem, it's working for him. He's adapted it to other projects.
Of course my own liking of sliding dovetails requires it's own special machine, a Leigh jig. I suppose that relatively speaking not so many own one of those.
Again thanks for all the informative well thought out replies.
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