which tool next to build this plan?


Hi,
I want to build a step stool using some free plans I found online. The plans call for the use of a biscuit joiner to glue-up 2 pieces of cherry. I don't own a biscuit joiner and was hoping to avoid purchasing one. I haven't had a need for one since this will be my first glue-up project (all of my project heretofore have been created using sheet goods).
I currently own a table saw, miter saw, jig saw and a router. I was wondering if this might be the time to get a router table, since I know you can get slot cutting bits that mimic the cut of a biscuit joiner and a router table is much more versatile than a BJ. Alternately, I could use a dowel jig for the glue-up, and use my tool budget for a planar instead.
Your thoughts?
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You don't need a biscuit jointer for this (or most) projects. A biscuit jointer simply makes alignment of the two joining faces more acurate. It isn't really for strength.

You can make biscuit slots with a router table (i have done this). It will be difficult to get the slot in the same place on both boards that are being joined. If one of your boards has a light cup to it, the slot on this board will be off set. A biscuit jointer has less contact surface area than a router table therefore it is less effected by slight cups in your stock (i didnt see a jointer in your equipment list, so I will assume that this might be a problem for you.)

I would BUILD a router table and then BUY a planar.

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I agree. Although there has been a lot of press about biscuit joiners lately you likely do not need one. They were designed originally for joining sheet goods. For solid wood forget it. JG

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I can see using biscuits for solid wood in certain instances. If you're assembling a large surface such as a table, biscuits would speed up the assembly process and go a long way to avoiding the glue drying prematurely. It would add to that concept if the project being assembled was more difficult to construct than simple adjacent boards for a table top.
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A better description of your stool would be helpfull. A one step I envision a angled MT Joint. A two step I envision a glued up side panel and using hand cut dovetails for the step to side panel joint.The glued up side boards need a straight side that can be done with a hand plane, glue and clamp. A BJ is used for alignment and not for strenght. You can buy router bits for your hand held router that would be used for edge joining two pieces but not nessesary.I have a BJ but it would be at the bottom of my list of tools needed and certainly not be used for a stool. When you build a piece think of the different ways to build it. There is never a right anwser but many wrong ways because of wood movement etc.
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Spend your money on more clamps and wood. Make sure the edges are jointed true, and edge glue them. You may need a couple of the clamps to keep the joint aligned to reduce future sanding. The glue joint will be stronger than the wood itself.
When you're ready for a router table, try to figure out a way to drop it in the table on the right side of the TS and save some $ and floorspace. If that doesn't work, and you don't use the router all that much, bolt it to a piece of 3/4 ply big enough to fit over your trash can or can clamp to a pair of sawhorses.
Spend the router table $ on more clamps and wood. You can't have too many clamps or enough wood, although SWMBO is starting to look askance at all the stuff I have squirreled away down in tunnel #3.
Regards, Roy

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Good advice here.
wrote:

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Somebody named Max u/l a one sheet plan for the trashcan router top over on a.b.e-books.technical last night or today. May be on your server still.

Regards, Roy
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Yea, the BJ is pretty expensive, unless you get the HF one. I have a Craftsman BJ attachment ($10 on sale years ago) on a yard sale router. It has worked great for years, but I agree with others that biscuits don't help the joint much, if any. It's nice to have the alignment help sometimes, though. Wilson

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If you are edge glueing boards to make a wider panel, glue alone will do it. The biscuits can help with alignment but, in a joint like this, that's all they do. Many, many boards were edge glued before the biscuit.

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wrote in message
If you need strength, tounge and groove is probably the best way to go. You could do dovetails, but T&G is easier for large sheet goods.
Puckdropper
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d wrote:

G'day D, As the others have said, glue alone will do the job. However, if you do wish to use biscuits you can purchase a bearing guided slot cutting bit for the router and do the grooves for the biscuits free hand. No need for a table. Another use for this bit is feathers. We used them a lot prior to biscuits. Groove both edges of the to be joined boards, cut a plywood feather (Strip) and glue into the groove on on board and knock the second board on to it. hope this helps a bit Regards John
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I was going to mention the slot cutting bit but you beat me to it. I bought the bit to try biscuit joining rather than spend the monney for a joiner. It worked well. It beats dowels since you only have to worry about accuracy in one plane.
I probably spent too much for the bit but I think it was worth it.
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Depending on the width of the cherry, and, the size of your T/S you might be able to use the T/S. If the boards are wide it works fine. Just set the fence to approx the center of the butt ends and set the blade to about 3/8" height and drop the butt ends into the blade. Use CAUTION - do not apply excessive downforce. If this is too much for you, the Router would be your next best bet.
J
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Certainly, a router table is much more versatile than a BJ. However, most men, when asked, will opt for the BJ every time.
(Sorry, couldn't resist!)
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Bruce Adams wrote:

You probably had the same thought I did when I read that post that said "BJ is expensive, unless you get the HF one" LOL. I sure would like to meet Miss HF. LOL
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Bruce Adams wrote:

You probably had the same thought I did when I read that post that said "BJ is expensive, unless you get the HF one" LOL. I sure would like to meet Miss HF. LOL
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d wrote:

It all depends.. Do you see yourself doing solid wood projects in the future? If so, a biscuit jointer is a great investment. Get either the porter cable or dewalt. Don't bother trying to do it with a router bit, that is a PITA. In addition, I use a biscuit jointer to help me align face frames to plywood carcasses. In short, my biscuit jointer gets used on every project I do.
If money is tight, make a homemade router table and use the money saved on a biscuit jointer.
If
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