dovetailed drawers


I recently ran across a "rule of thumb" for orienting grain on drawer components. It was something like" inside of drawer, outside of tree" or something like that. Could someone verify that for me please? TIA
FWIW. I will be building about 8 drawers. I will be using poplar for all drawer components but the bottom, where I plan to use luan "1/4"". I want to dovetail front and back of drawer and will use my Porter-Cable 5116 dovetail machine(why do they call it a "machine" anyway). Seems all straight forward but I have never made drawers before. Largest of drawers will be aprox 15"x19". Applicable comments encouraged.
--
SwampBug



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"Swampbug" wrote in message

IDIOT!
Not you ... "inside of drawer is outside of tree"
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LOL! Thanks!
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SwampBug
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Yup. That's correct. It means that if your drawers cup due to additional drying (a pretty fair bet), the corners will look like () rather than )(.
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So if you are using stable wood in your shop in Arizona and plan to ship the piece to a home along the Gulf Coast, should the IDIOT mnemonic be changed to ODIOT or IDIIT?
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In theory, yes. In practice, find quartersawn stock.
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That's what I thought, and why I have a problem with such rules of thumb. one really needs to think about them. More pragmatically, I live in a 4-seasons area, and my shop shares two walls and a door with air conditioned/heated living space, and no opening to the outside. So if wood is stable in my shop, a rule of thumb like IDIOT needs to be reversed when I am building in the winter.
Guess it's just one more think I need to think about...
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Stephen M wrote:

Isn't that backwards? I was taught that the wood tries to straighten out the growth rings. If so, and the drawers start out with the rings like (), if they straighten out to a || shape, the drawer sides will look like )(.
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Larry Blanchard wrote:

Methinks he was describing the shape of the drawers sides and not the growth rings... so yeah. (but not backwards)
er
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Correct. I could have said that better to compensate for the acii art.
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Okay, I'm following what to do in either season to get the result you mention in the other season. But WHY is () preferable to )(? Is it because of greater strength in the center of the joint to resist the movement than there is at the end (where at least the last 1/2 pin is glued on only one side and has less mechanical locking)?
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Sort-of. If you assume that the endgrain gluing is completely useless the last useful glue area (from bottom to top) is the plane formed by the top of the top tail. () pulls the essentially unglued part of the joint closed. )( pulls it apart.
-Steve
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On Mon, 6 Feb 2006 11:58:00 -0600, "Swampbug"

Make them like this:
)_____(
Not like this:
(_____)

You mention nothing about how the drawers will be used nor how deep. The larger drawer may need a muntin depending on what it will store. Make sure all sides are square and flat (an out-of-shape drawer is a terrible thing.)
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Sorry, , ,They are to replace drawers in kitchen cabinets and are about 3.5" deep but for two which will be around 9" deep. I just spent about 6hrs tweaking that PC5116, , ,cantankerous lil thang! The original drawers had no drawer front as such but was formed by framing with lap molding, or cabinet door edge molding. It didn't look bad but it just fell apart.
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That's what Frank Klausz says on my "Dovetail a Drawer" video.
Mike
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