Is your stock that you are cutting square? Try transferring a line around
the stock with a good square and a utility knife. After your sure of the
stock, you should be able to figure out what's happening. What makes me ask
is that you stated that "sometimes" its not even. If that is the case,
something is not square or something is moving.
My tenons improved after I took some classes on using hand tools and was
able to lay out a tenon for cutting by hand. I don't cut many tenons by
hand, but I use the layout methods all the time.
It's an adventure getting there (I'm not there, but I am closer). :-)
Enjoy the trip.
BTW, shoulder planes are used to true up tenons. A scribed line and a sharp
chisel will also work.
Thanks for all of the suggestions. I won't stop trying until I can cut them
This question was my first post on this newsgroup and I was surprised at how
quickly I got responses and the number of them.
How are you checking your miter gauge for 90d? It needs to be square
to the miter slot. If you are squaring the miter gauge to the blade,
but the blade is not parallel to the slot, your cut will not be at
I'm also a bit of a newbie, and a long time lurker to this group. This
is my first post, so go easy ;)
I don't really have a suggestion to help, rather a question in general.
Everybody, including Nahm, seems to use their table saw for making
tenons. I haven't done a lot of mortise & tenon joints, but when I have,
I have always used my table mounted router, and have had great results.
One setup does it all, and the shoulders always line up perfectly.
Depending on the size of the tenon, I may have to sand off some router
marks, but that's all.
Am I missing some advantage of using a table saw for making tenons
rather than a table mounted router?
I don't recall him mentioning that he had a router table, but if he does
you are right, it is another possibility. As it is he is using the
tablesaw and should be able to make them easily but hasn't had good
results at this point. Something is wrong with the setup as near as I
can see. All that have replied so far have given good examples of things
to look for. I think I'd suggest just backing away from it for a few
days and then come back fresh, check all settings on the saw and fence
and try it again. Sometimes no matter how much effort you keep trying to
put into something it always backfires because you're not going at it
with a fresh mind.
An unkind remark is like a killing frost. No matter how much it warms
up later, the damage remains.
See, now that's why you need to stop being a lurker and participate! It
takes all kinds of opinions and maybe using a router could be a solution to
his problem. Just because he was trying to use a ts with difficulty doesn't
mean he HAS to use it. Perhaps his ts isn't his best tool for this job.
Larry C in Auburn, WA
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