Dovetails

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It’s a Mystery

This puzzle mallet is seemingly made by magic. by Roy Underhill pages 44-49 From the April 2012 Issue, #196 It can’t come apart, but, problem is, it can’t go together! Legend has it that Abraham Lincoln invented this mysterious mallet. The trouble with ordinary mallets, in his time as now, was that they kept “flying off the handle.”...

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The ‘Impossitails’ Zone

Amaze your friends with quadrilateral and rising dovetails. By Roy Underhill Pages: 38-39 From the November 2011 issue #193 Buy this issue now An ordinary day in the shop, but suddenly, you’re dovetailing through another dimension, a dimension not only of sight and sound, but of mind. You’re on a journey into a woodworking land whose boundaries are...

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The 5 Dovetailing Personalities

I’ve taught a lot of people to cut dovetails through the years, and I’m convinced there are five different personality types of people who learn to cut dovetails. Here is my short list. Morgo Will DESTROY the Instructor Yup, I always build the project that the students are building for the class. As a...

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Video: Not Sawing, But Nibbling

Aside from Bender, Zapp Brannigan and Hypnotoad, my favorite character on the show “Futurama” is Nibbler – a cute little alien that can swallow an entire elephant in one bite and then poop starship fuel. What does this have to to with sawing? Everything. Nibbling before swallowing the whole giraffe is how I saw...

My Trashiest Dovetails in 10 Years

Today my worst nightmare as a teacher came true during a dovetail demonstration. As I knocked together the components of the joint under the watchful eyes of 18 students and two video cameras at the Marc Adams School of Woodworking, I realized that the joint I cut was probably the gappiest one I’d cut...

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Different Dovetail Joinery

You’ve read a number of posts on this blog about our upcoming book based on furniture, photos and information found at the Museum of Early Southern Decorative Arts (MESDA) and in Old Salem. I’m working on drawings of a few of the pieces and have come across a second use of a dovetail joint...

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Spiral Blades: Good for Dovetailing?

While packing my tools to teach a toolbox class in Germany, I knew two things: 1. The students had to cut a lot of dovetails in 7/8”-thick material. 2. Coping saws are uncommon on the Continent. So I packed an extra coping saw blade in my luggage, which turned out to be either a...

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An Awfully Tough Build

This weekend, I made a small walnut and maple box. In my six years of woodworking, it’s the toughest project I’ve ever built. Last Friday morning, I had to say goodbye to Cleocatra, the sweet kitty who adopted me at the SPCA in 1996. I don’t know how old she was – but I do...

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More Hand-cut Dovetail Cheating

This past weekend I was in the magazine shop working on a project for the August issue of Popular Woodworking Magazine. The only hint I can give about the project is that the piece I’m working on has small drawers. In building those small drawers, I opted to use a couple techniques and ideas...