Mortise & Tenon help

Im a semi-newbie at woodworking... I know WHAT to do... I just don't always know HOW to do it.
I have done mostly novice woodworking projects, but a few intermediate ones. I have build newspaper and magazine racks that are solid plywood... hung some trim and crown molding. I have a crappy table saw, a decent router (Porter Cable 1.5 HP, with a home made router table), a nice Brad nailer and compressor, and a few other 'OK' power tools.
My 18 month old daughter has tons of toys. So I want to build a toy box. Lowes has this toybox on their website that screams for me to build it (http://www.lowes.com/lkn?action=howTo&p=Build/ToyBox.html&rn=RightNavFiles/ rightNavTools). I like the look and the practicality of it. The issue is that it uses Mortise and Tenon jointery. I can make the tenon with a planned homemade jig for my table saw... the mortise is the hard part. I dont have a drill press. I dont have any 'good' mortise making chisels. Can I do this with a normal drill and some semi cheap wood chisels? Should I just give up and make a drill press number one on my list of tools to get... before the biscuit jointer and other items?
It seems that every project I do I say, 'If I just had a <insert new tool name here> then I could do this like Norm'. Its discouraging... but I'm fairly young so I know I have a while to go before I'm even close.
Any advice is appreciated.
Thanks, Mike
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I've used the beadlock system and it is fairly easy, no special tools other then what's in the kit. www.beadlock.com I've also used biscuits depending on the weight load.
--
Mike S.
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By one good mortise chisel. Pick the size to fit your current project. Oh yea, learn to sharpen.
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Ross
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Mike,
IMO, when you first start woodworking you learn to improvise with the tools you have until you can afford the tools you need for a specific job. True, a mortising chisel will make your life a lot easier, and I would recommend buying one for this project, adding other chisels later. However, 20 years ago all I had was a set of Stanley bevel edge chisels, and that's what I used to make my mortises. Not having the right tool certainly makes the job more difficult, but if you're patient and take your time, you can certainly make perfect mortices with a bevel edge chisel.
Hope this helps, Dave

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... the mortise is the hard part. I : dont have a drill press. I dont have any 'good' mortise making chisels. : Can I do this with a normal drill and some semi cheap wood chisels? Should : I just give up and make a drill press number one on my list of tools to : get... before the biscuit jointer and other items?
Mike might like to try my web site - Mortising By Hand.
Jeff G
-- Jeff Gorman, West Yorkshire, UK Email address is username@ISP username is amgron ISP is clara.co.uk Website www.amgron.clara.net
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(...)

...
Wow, great website!
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Drill press mortise attachments are better than nothing, but don't work all that well if you're going to be doing a lot of mortises.
A good router jig, (seems like there have been two or three a year in the ww mags), might be the best way for you to go since you already have the most expensive part. Check the online pages of the ww mags for router mortising jigs, or do a google on those words.
That said, I have made plenty of mortises with a hand drill, a bit of the appropriate size, and a regular chisel or two. You can even use a wood or pattern maker's rasp to clean the overlapping holes out if you don't have a chisel.
Also, might want to check out both pocket hole joinery and biscuit joinery.
--
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I've seen drill presses selling for 70 bucks Canadian for a benchtop model. Thats all I have. It will be the best money you ever spent.

always
ones.
and
(http://www.lowes.com/lkn?action=howTo&p=Build/ToyBox.html&rn=RightNavFiles/
Should
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I bought benchtop Delta and was amazed how much the table wobbles with locking pin engaged. I've learned to prop boards under the table to achieve 90 and consistency.
On Fri, 19 Sep 2003 11:38:00 GMT, "js"

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Mortice and tenon jigs that can be used with a router at the: http://www.patwarner.com/moticer.html and http://www.patwarner.com/tenonmaker.html links. Plans available for both in jigs book, perhaps at your local library. *************************************************************************

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Pat,
You left out the "r" on "morticer" on your link:
http://www.patwarner.com/morticer.html
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http://shop.woodcraft.com/Woodcraft/product_family.asp?family%5Fid 35&giftlse&mscssidB53564A2F14D5082F9CDA8654D8F82
Or go to your favorite store and search for beadLOCK Tenon Joinery System. This along with your drill will let you do a loose mortise and tenon.
Bama John
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To answer your question. Yes you can make a mortise with a drill and chisels. With the proper set up and right bit you can also do it with your router..
--
Mike G.
Heirloom Woods
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John Lucas does a pretty fair job of explaining this critter:
http://www.woodshopdemos.com/prod-bdl.htm
You could also use a router with a jig or a edge guide.
The most valuable tools you can possible get are BOOKS.
There are MANY great books on joinery.
M&T can be done at least a half dozen different ways.
Some are easy, some are hard, they all end up with the same result. The only way to figure out the "best way" is to try them all(eventually).
The router can do a LOT for you but it requires practice and jigs to make it accurate. A router screaming at 22,500 rpms perched up on a piece of expensive wood is not a pleasant experience unless you are VERY prepared. See the above about BOOKS.
Here is an EXCELLENT book on joinery by a very bright guy:
(Amazon.com product link shortened)63986297/sr=1-1/ref=sr_1_1/002-6790989-5852817?v=glance
Here is another:
(Amazon.com product link shortened)63986240/sr=2-1/ref=sr_2_1/002-6790989-5852817
My point is, there are many books on joinery.... Start your library NOW.
M&T has been around for a couple thousand years, soooo why not take advantage of other peoples mistakes ???
"Mike W." wrote:

the mortise is the hard part.

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All you really need is a sharp chisel to do your mortise. A bevel-edge will work, too, just don't take such a deep cut that you bend the chisel when you are cutting out the chips. You could use a hand drill to remove some of the waste, as long as the bit is undersized and you leave plenty of room to chisel an accurate mortise wall. A Marples blue-handle chisel is pretty cheap and will never be a wasted investment. It's important to keep it really sharp, too. You can sharpen it with wetstones, or with sandpaper (the "scary sharp" method).
Scribe or mark a very fine line and make sure you keep to the edge of the line, and that your walls are vertical as you cut. Practice a couple of times on scrap before you do the real thing.

I think you should resist the urge to get a tool to do everything. I like power tools for handling the hard labor of planing and jointing, but I like hand tools for much of the joinery. I am a relative newbie, too, and I found that with practice it took very little time for adequate (perhaps not great, but adequate) hand joinery skills to develop. It does take longer, but as a hobbyist my time is cheap and the satisfaction is high.
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I just finished a similar project and considered myself too inexperienced to tackle M&T in addition to the other things on the project. I went the "loose tenon" route. Specifically, I used BEADlock, as mentioned here many times, but there are other ways to get there.
Someday, I'll sneak up on real M&T's. Benchtop 12" Delta drill press cost me $100 - was a refurb model from www.toolking.com. The model will take a morticing attachment. But having a decent drill press makes so many other projects easier.
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I cheat. I use a router with a 1/4 inch straight bit to cut the mortises if it isn't going to be visible. It gives rounded edges, but I can square them, use them for added tightness, or make a rounded tennon. I can use the same to make the tennons, or move to a larger diameter bit. It takes a good router fence, but no great skill.
Michael

to
many
a
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Mike W. wrote:

Depends on what you want to do. If you're doing a lot of glue-up stuff, then maybe a biscuit joiner is a priority. I don't have one, and it's not even on my radar, but I have a small shop and build small stuff.
You can find ways of getting around not having a drill press. My first thought would be to try a doweling jig, but I have a doweling jig, so that's why I thought of that. :)
My drill press is my favorite tool though, hands down. I could really use two or three of them. Unless you just have no imagination at all, I don't think you'll ever run out of uses for a drill press if you decide to go ahead and get one. Go for a floor model if you can afford the outlay and the floor space. Having a big column makes a good thing better.

Helps if you have money to play with. I don't have corporate sponsorship like Norm, so I have to make do with what little I've got.
(Of course the other side of the coin is that I paid for almost everything I have with plastic, and the reason I'm broke is because I'm paying $12,000 for a $200 bandsaw. Hindsight is a bitch. I own my drill press free and clear though. Cash-ola.)
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Michael McIntyre ---- Silvan < snipped-for-privacy@users.sourceforge.net>
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Beadlock.

always
ones.
and
(http://www.lowes.com/lkn?action=howTo&p=Build/ToyBox.html&rn=RightNavFiles/
Should
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