Late again to a thread but here goes.
Re: Marketing to Elitists
When I find a tool or machine that works as well or better than
the tool or machine I'm currently using - and it's notably eaiser
to use and faster (those two go together), I'm very interested.
If I buy it and it doesn't live up to expectations I tell other
woodworkers who are considering getting one why I personally
was disappointed by the tool or machine. And if it meets or
exceeds my expectations I tell other woodworkers who are
considering getting one why I personally like the tool or machine.
In either case, I try to provide emperical data to support my
opinion of the tool or machine.
In the case of the DOMINO, which is often perceived as merely
a very expensive biscuit cutter, I try and educate woodworkers
who have a need for a tool like the DOMINO. The motivation
is to provide information that may be useful to a purchasing
decision. It's not a show off thing - "look what I can do that
you can't" or "look what I have that you don't" - I enjoy
helping people, to be of service to others - it just seems the
right thing to do.
So let's look at the DOMINO, what it can do and leave the
"Is it worth it? up to others to decide.
The mortise and tenon is a great joint - but it takes some time,
knowledge, skills, abilities and tools to make them. If you lack
any of it's requirements you probably won't use them often, if
at all. So you go with pocket screws and/or biscuits, maybe
even dowels. Each will hold two pieces of wood together end
grain to side grain - square to each other. But each alternative
involves a compromise - in strength, appearance or both.
How much compromise you're willing to make is up to you.
Since cutting the mortise part of the mortise and tenon joint
is the most time consuming operation if done with mallet and
chisel, a chisel and bit mortising machine can get you over
that excuse for not using M&T joinery. Most drill presses
either come with a "mortising accessory package" - adapter,
chisels and bits, some sort of fence and hold down. That
makes cutting mortises a little easier and a little quicker
- but not by much.
A little dedicated bench top chisel and bit mortising machine
does the job a bit quicker and quite bit easier than the "drill
press add on" - and they're not prohibitively expensive/
BUT - a really good dedicated chisel and bit mortiser - one with
a 3/4 hp or more motor, nice beefy guides and ways, a long
stout handle, a larger, solid table and fence and a good hold
down and hold in system to keep the stock in place, PLUS some
easily set left/right stops - makes the job SO MUCH EASIER
- to set up and use. Add an XY table, with in/out stops you
can easily set, and the job of cuttng mortises gets even easier
- and more likely to be used.
Now a dedicated horizontal boring/mortising machine will make
cutting mortises even easier and faster - and can be use to
make the tenons as well.
OR - a router based mortising jig will make cut mortises quicker
But - after you've done a bunch of mortise and tenon joints
and appreciate this joint - and have a way of quickly and
easily cutting the mortises - in both side grain AND - with a
horizontal boring/mortising machineor router and jig - it soon
becomes obvious that an integral tenon on each end of the
a) wastes nice wood - the tenons won't be seen
b) is a high risk thing - blow a tenon and you have to make a
WHOLE NEW PART
c) isn't necessary if you can mortise the part that would
normally REQUIRE a tenon and go with a seperate loose
/floating tenon. Just as strong if not stronger and it
can be made from scraps you'd probably otherwise
throw away or burn. AND - the loose/floating tenon
part can be of some other wood - perhaps a stonger/harder
wood if it's size must be small.
So - traditional mortise and tenon joinery gets replaced by
loose/floating tenon joinery, the mortises all done with
a router and jig or a horizontal boring/mortising machine.
Now if you went the mortise and tenon route, starting with
saw, chisel and mallet then upgraded over time through
the mortise cutting machine or machine and jig you'd
have spent as much or more than the whole DOMINO
package - AND you would've spent hours of tedius and
sometimes irritating time setting up and using the tools,
machines and jigs that the DOMINO makes unnecessary.
If you were an advanced beginner, or an intermediate
woodworker (enough experience to appreciate what the
DOMINO does FOR you) wouldn't you want this tool?
Not because it's REALLY EXPENSIVE or LOOKS REALLY
REALLY COOL - but because it will enable you to make
more and better pieces quicker and easier.
So "spreading the word" - for me - is more "evangelical"
- here's a better way. I'm a DOMINO Evangelist. I'm
also a JoinTech Cabinet Maker Router Table System
and AKEDA dovetail jig sytem evangelist. These things
do things other tools and machines CAN do- but do
them quicker, easier and more accurately. In the case
of the JoinTech, it also does things nothing else can
do, at least not anythng I can afford. If I can "enlighten"
a woodworker I've done my job. If that person "converts"
- that's THEIR choice.
Elitist I'm not. Helpful - well I'm working on that one.