Router Jig for half-lap joints


Anyone got a link or two? I'd like to be able to have it the boards together, for gang-dadoing, and also down to the bench, to eliminate any warp. The ability to change the width of the dado would be excellent as well.
Thanks. JP ******************************* I <heart> New York in October.
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Jay Pique (in snipped-for-privacy@o13g2000cwo.googlegroups.com) said:
| Anyone got a link or two? I'd like to be able to have it the boards | together, for gang-dadoing, and also down to the bench, to eliminate | any warp. The ability to change the width of the dado would be | excellent as well.
Leon designed an excellent dado jig and has allowed me to post his pictures at http://www.iedu.com/DeSoto/dado.html - that should work well if you use a router bit with a pilot bearing at the shank end of the cutter.
If you want half-lap joints that *can't* rack, take a look at http://www.iedu.com/DeSoto/design.html - but be warned that the tooling is a bit "over the top". The page has a drawing showing how the joint might used to build a workbench from 2x4 and 2x6 lumber.
-- Morris Dovey DeSoto Solar DeSoto, Iowa USA http://www.iedu.com/DeSoto/solar.html
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Morris Dovey wrote:

I very much like that design. Many thanks. JP

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Morris,
Now all you have to do is to make up some various sized templates that can be attached/clamped to stock so a hand-held router can be used to make those and you got a winner.
Last year I made 3 large hobby benches where I used a lot of half-laps and sure would have used your idea if I had known about it then.
So when can we order the templates......?
Bob S.

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BobS (in dwS%e.17043$ snipped-for-privacy@twister.nyroc.rr.com) said:
| Now all you have to do is to make up some various sized templates | that can be attached/clamped to stock so a hand-held router can be | used to make those and you got a winner. | | Last year I made 3 large hobby benches where I used a lot of | half-laps and sure would have used your idea if I had known about | it then. | | So when can we order the templates......?
I always get nervous when someone says: "All you have to do is..."
Are you sure? Are you *really* sure? I can produce templates to be used with a 1/4" straight plunge bit and 3/8" template guide.
They can be made from from tempered hardboard, plastic, aluminum, or stainless steel (in order of [perhaps exponentially] increasing lead time, precision, lifetime, and cost). Do you have a preference?
You should also know that the joint pretty much needs same-day assembly. Any change in humidity (increase *or* decrease) tightens the joint. That's a Good Thing after assembly but a PIA if you want to cut parts one day and assemble the next. If your shop isn't climate controlled, then you'd probably want a hydraulic press after the third day - DAMHIKT.
More: The joint was designed to be cut with a CNC router to _very_ close tolerances. Even with a template, this won't be a trivial setup or cut with a free-hand router.
So... What sizes and material would you like - and what would you consider a reasonable price for the set?
About the bench design... Did you notice that multiple 1/2" dowels were _machined_ into the ends of the side members? :-)
-- Morris Dovey DeSoto Solar DeSoto, Iowa USA http://www.iedu.com/DeSoto/solar.html
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I do believe you're over reacting a bit. I made a simple off-handed statement and I did not indicate I wanted one. But yes, I think if you did make them up - you probably could sell them.
But to answer your questions:
1. Aluminum 2. If you say it can't be done with a template and a free-hand router - stop, go no further 3. Sizes for 2x4, 2x6 - these would also work on 1x stock 4. Price - how about a nice round $19.95 per template or two for $34.95 plus shipping.
I did notice the dowels - nice touch.
Sorry for making the suggestion.
Bob S.
said:

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I'll take a pair!
Nice work.
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BobS (in Vm_%e.19445$ snipped-for-privacy@twister.nyroc.rr.com) said:
| said: || ||| Now all you have to do is to make up some various sized templates ||| that can be attached/clamped to stock so a hand-held router can be ||| used to make those and you got a winner. ||| ||| Last year I made 3 large hobby benches where I used a lot of ||| half-laps and sure would have used your idea if I had known about ||| it then. ||| ||| So when can we order the templates......? || || I always get nervous when someone says: "All you have to do is..." || || Are you sure? Are you *really* sure? I can produce templates to be || used with a 1/4" straight plunge bit and 3/8" template guide. || || They can be made from from tempered hardboard, plastic, aluminum, || or stainless steel (in order of [perhaps exponentially] increasing || lead time, precision, lifetime, and cost). Do you have a || preference? || || You should also know that the joint pretty much needs same-day || assembly. Any change in humidity (increase *or* decrease) tightens || the joint. That's a Good Thing after assembly but a PIA if you || want to cut parts one day and assemble the next. If your shop || isn't climate controlled, then you'd probably want a hydraulic || press after the third day - DAMHIKT. || || More: The joint was designed to be cut with a CNC router to _very_ || close tolerances. Even with a template, this won't be a trivial || setup or cut with a free-hand router. || || So... What sizes and material would you like - and what would you || consider a reasonable price for the set? || || About the bench design... Did you notice that multiple 1/2" dowels || were _machined_ into the ends of the side members? :-)
| I do believe you're over reacting a bit. I made a simple off-handed | statement and I did not indicate I wanted one. But yes, I think if | you did make them up - you probably could sell them.
Perhaps I was overreacting a bit. I was a bit leery of saying: "Of course I can produce templates - all you'll need to do is position and clamp the template frame, then use each of the three inserts to cut one level of the joint at the appropriate depth."
I guess the short answer you were looking for is: "You can order as soon as I know how much it costs me to make 'em."
| But to answer your questions: | | 1. Aluminum
Ok. Aluminum it is - probably 1/8" 6061.
| 2. If you say it can't be done with a template and a free-hand | router - stop, go no further
I think it can or I wouldn't have responded as I did.
| 3. Sizes for 2x4, 2x6 - these would also work on 1x stock
Ok - and you're correct in saying that the same templates should work for both 1" and 2" stock.
| 4. Price - how about a nice round $19.95 per template or two for | $34.95 plus shipping.
Glad you didn't opt for stainless! I'll have to see how materials, fixturing, and cutting time work out in order to figure a price. I haven't routed aluminum before so I have a bit of learning to do.
| I did notice the dowels - nice touch.
Thanks. My previous project had been to make a fixture that would let me cut board endgrain (see http://www.iedu.com/DeSoto/jigs.html and follow the link just above the photographs).
| Sorry for making the suggestion.
No need to be sorry. I suspected that you hadn't considered that what you were asking for was actually multiple templates/size with a precision frame to provide sufficiently accurate registration. It _is_ an interesting challenge.
-- Morris Dovey DeSoto Solar DeSoto, Iowa USA http://www.iedu.com/DeSoto/design.html
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Morris,
No, I didn't consider the multiple templates needed and I've never seen a joint made like that. It does have some obvious advantages - like no racking, exact alignment, more glue surface, etc.... Perhaps it is best left to the CNC routing technique and that may be the only market for it but I doubt it.
Not everyone has access to the big boy toy's (CNC router...) so it seems to me that if you could figure out how to make these joints easily and relatively quickly - you would have a winning jig. Look at the other jigs that are out there - their complexity and functionality - then note their pricing. Is it worth it to the user? Also note their target market. You can make dovetails by hand but yet I have Leigh D$ (pun intended) so if there's perceived value - we buy.
Before you start cutting aluminum, I would do some research (head-scratching) and see what other uses this joint would lend itself to and why it would be better, quicker, more economical or what you need to do to make it that way. Can it be combined with anything and made part of a system of routable joints?
If I was a manufacturer - would this be useful? Let's say I make compost bins (which are nothing but boxes) and I pre-cut everything and had it bundled for you at the borg's. All you had to do was to snap the pieces together and insert two screws/dowels/lag bolts to hold it together - that would be an easy sell. No measuring, nothing to do to make it square and it's solid as can be once assembled - perfect!
My brother used to be in charge of the shipping/receiving at a large manufacturer that made electronic component insertion equipment. This equipment is big, heavy and awkward to ship. They built their own crates. I remember him saying they had to use thick plywood along with 2x4's or the boxes would not stand up to the racking forces of shipping. Thick plywood is $$$. If this joint could be done easily by just about anyone and would allow for thinner materials to be used since the joint itself prevents/reduces racking - then there's a market.
Anyone in production of making benches, large frame boxes and the like would be a potential user if the joint is substantially better and no more difficult to make. So issues such as template alignment and how it's held in place need to be worked out - all of which I'm sure you're aware of. Market for the average woodworker would probably be slim unless the jig can be used to make other joints. Commercially, you probably have a better potential.
I would look at both and see which one would could be addressed by what you have now (a good idea for a CNC routed joint) and how you could market that. Ideas have a way of taking on a life of their own and evolving, so while this initial market may be a program on a CD and an instruction booklet sold to other CNC users - making templates and making it multi-functional could be the next steps for a niche market.
When you initially designed this you probably thought about how this could be used. Well, you have the collective intelligence, experience and expertise of the wRECk at your disposal to draw upon. Patent the idea first. Another story - My brother patented and idea for adding a chemical to a wash solution that is used to clean soldered boards. The problem was that the solution they were using would foam up and created a big mess if the operator used to much. His magic chemical - salt! He remembered our mother telling him to add salt to the wash water if you got to much suds in the washing machine. He patented the idea (cost $3,000) and sold the patent to the manufacturer that made the wash solution for a nice chunk of change.
I think you have a great idea and it seems like it's worth exploring if you have the time and inclination to do so. If not, someone else will.
Bob S.
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