I am looking for a dovetail jig that can do both half-blind-dovetails
The 12" Porter-Cable dovetail jig looks very nice, and seems to be
able to do everything. But it costs $110.
The 12" JET dovetail jig is priced very reasonable. But its product
description says that it handles half-blind-dovetails; I assume this
means it cannot handle through-dovetails.
The 12" Central Machine dovetail jig in Harbor Freight is priced very
very low ($30). But it seems to be able to cut half-bind-dovetails
just like the JET. Moreover, its template seems to be black. According
to some messages in this newsgroup, I should avoid the one from Harbor
Freight that has black template because it is made from plastic.
Another 12" dovetail jig in Harbor Freight is also priced quite
reasonable ($46). It claims that it can handle half-blind-dovetails
and standard-dovetails (I assume this means through-dovetails). This
is good. But it says that it only comes with one template. I am
wondering how I can cut both half-blind and through-dovetails with one
template. May be I am not understanding this correctly. Currently,
this one is the most promising for me. Does anyone use this particular
model? You can see it here:
Thanks in advance for any info.
<< I am looking for a dovetail jig that can do both half-blind-dovetails
The 12" Porter-Cable dovetail jig looks very nice, and seems to be
able to do everything. But it costs $110. >><BR><BR>
If you don't want to spend more than $110, then you had better do them by hand.
None of the imports do through dovetails. Like everything elde, you get what
you pay for. You want good through dovetails by jig? Leigh, Keller, PC Omnijig.
There are no shortcuts.
Thanks for the suggestion.
I have checked it out from their web site, and find that the one from
Keller is probably the cheapest one that I can find so far that can
cut "through-dovetails". Although it cannot cut half-blind dovetail, I
can get around this by getting the cheapest one from Harbor Freight
that can do just that (and only that), or cut "through-dovetails" for
drawers and put a false front cover to the drawers to simulate the
look of a half-blind dovetails (as suggested in Keller's web site). I
probably get Keller for now and worry about getting the one from
Harbor Freight (for half-blind dovetails) later when I really need it.
I have checked the $110 version of dovetail jig from Porter-Cable.
Turns out it only can cut half-blind dovetails and box joints, not
through dovetails as what I originally believed. The one that can do
both through-dovetails and half-blind dovetails is a different model
called "Omnijig Dovetail Machine" from Porter-Cable, and I would need
to buy the template for cutting through dovetails separately. And the
total price would have been way over my budget.
Thanks again for the suggestion of looking into the one from Keller.
Keller is capable of box joints also, just didn't mention that as
subject was DTs. Need different bit if memory serves. I've used the
Keller for wood wider than the jig by careful matching/clamping.
On 4 Apr 2004 11:18:39 -0700, email@example.com (Jay Chan) wrote:
I was hoping someone else would bring this up, because I know
I'll get flamed by the tool purists :-). But Sears has a jig
that will cut both through and half-blind dovetails and, with an
optional template, box joints as well.
So far, I've only used mine to cut through dovetails, but it
worked fine for that. It does take awhile to assemble the jig,
but you only have to do that once.
It won't do variable spacing, but neither will the Keller unless
it's changed since I looked at it.
I just looked up the Sears jig and two box joint templates now
come with it. But the price is up to $199, which is higher than
I remember (and higher than the Keller).
But take a look at it at:
Seem like Porter-Cable dovetail jig is in my future waiting for me.
Actually, I can get $25 off from Amazon.com with some other purchases.
Therefore, the final cash outflow will not be that bad afterall.
firstname.lastname@example.org (Jay Chan) wrote in message
buy once...cry once..."ain't no secrets"...."ain't no short
cuts"......Buy or team up with a buddy and buy a leigh....anything
less could be a waste of time and effort and will end up in
I know that the Leigh is expensive and is a hugh investment if you do
not cut lot of dovetails, but it is the most well around good jig.
Perhaps you could sell a couple of dovetailed blanket chest and help
pay for the jig. Good luck.....
Mike from American Sycamore
So I am new here (been lurking for a while) been around woodworking my
whole life. As a young and aspiring woodworker I have found two things
true that don't get much attention.
1. Woodworking is really expensive. Sorry but anyone suggesting there
is no valid alternative to the leigh does not understand this, you
have to be planning a lot of dovetails to warrant that jig. Sometimes
I think for us younger folks we have to take the risk of not buying
the best tool on the market. It may not work quite as well. But in my
experience, with patience even mediocre tools can produce excellent
I have the aluminum HF dovetail jig. It ain't great and doesn't do a
lot of fancy cuts. But when it is set up properly I can produce
drawers in about 5 mins for all 4 corners, tight and square. At this
point if I had bought a leigh and later found out how well the $25
dollar one worked I would have kicked myself. I just did not need $400
in dovetail jig. Now, at some point in my life I may want the features
of the leigh but for now I have served my purpose I made straight
2. Used tools don't get brought up much here. This is a little more
difficult with DT jigs but with a lot of things a little patience and
garagesaling will find some great deals. For that matter you never
know, you might find a leigh someone bought thinking they needed but
My one disclaimer, all of this said. Nothing will make me go back to
my garage sale special craftsman router now that I have a PC895. When
I started the Craftsman worked, now I have upgraded. If I could find a
PC, Dewalt, bosch at a garage sale I would buy it in a second, just no
You are "kinda right"...most of us learn the hard way that when it comes to
the basic tools it is cheaper in the long-run to spend the extra $$$ and get
good ones (e.g. a PC router vs the Crapsman as you state...sure you'll agree
that there is much more going on there than the color <g>). After the
basics it comes down to how much you are going to use it, how much time it
takes to fiddle with it and what your tolerance is. Better tools will yield
better results most of the time but sometimes it simply doesn't matter. I
personally cannot get a "perfect anything" from my collection of mid-priced
Delta/PC/Dewalt tools but funny thing about wood is its modesty. When I am
done, I seem to be the only one that knows where the flaws are.
(Jay Chan) wrote in message news
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