> Never did them and I don't think I'll start now. Later on something
> can heat the shop with if it turns out real bad. :)
Cutting dovetails is NBD, if you are patient and keep your wits about you.
The biggest part of the task is twofold:
1) Making sure the jig is set up properly.
Lots of scrap pieces of wood to make test cuts are a must.
When you get the jig adjusted, make a sample set for each corner that
is clearly marked with a felt pen. I use a lot of 1/2" Birch ply scrap
for this task.
2) Making sure the parts to be cut are positioned in the jig correctly.
3) Reread the instructions before every cut to confirm, before cutting.
Just went thru the above to cut 36 dovetailed corners for a current
Not difficult, just demanding that you do it right.
It is strictly a plan "A" job, there is no plan "B".
> No sh*t! ... Plan B immediately invokes the much dreaded question:
> in your wallet?"
Now that you mention it, believe it or not, I screwed up the dovetail
on a drawer front: however, all was not lost since the screw up would
be hidden when properly assembled.
Epoxy to the rescue.
Mixed up some fairing putty and plugged the screw up proud, then let
it cure for a week.
Sanded down, recut dovetail properly, then assembled with epoxy.
Worked like a charm. Nothing visible.
Even a blind hog will find an acorn once and awhile, if he keeps
rooting around long enough.
Lee, I guess you'll decide what you have the time and patience for.
However, my experience may be worth reading. I'm not in the same class
as the guys that are touting dovetails, but I've not let that stop me.
Dovetails were something I had admired for years and was afraid to try.
But one day I needed to build a drawer and there wasn't a joint that
would do other than a dovetail. So I got some books, and hiked over to
Lee Valley to get the right saw and a couple of saddles and set down to
do some practicing.
The first joint was pathetic, the second not much better. I think it was
the 5th that made me stop and say "holy shit, I think I'm on to
The tenth joint was the drawer. I installed it in the cabinet and was
pretty damned pleased with myself. I moved on up to dovetail bits for
the router, and I feel confident that I could make them whenever I want
That whole process took a couple of evenings. Maybe three. Looking
back, it was a lot simpler than I'd thought it would be.
Food for thought.
I love to work with walnut, it's easy to work, and smoothes up great
If you can find some with good contrast between heart and sapwood, usually
available only in air dried stuff you can do stunning things.
I found that turned walnut projects seem to benefit from a first coat of
walnut stained oil (Watco) to bring out more color.
Try a sample and see.
Negatives--- walnut can be irritating, avoid its dust. Its sawdust kills
plants, don't use it for mulch on anything you want to live.
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