What is a dovetail gauge

How to create various dovetail joints in 2021 - Todo web media

Dovetail joints have been used for centuries to build boxes, chests, drawers, and other woodworking projects where the joints are not only visible but also serve as a design statement. Well-built dovetail joints do not require mechanical fasteners (although modern joints use adhesives to keep the joint from loosening over time). Learn about the different types of dovetail joints, as well as methods of making these popular joints.

Through swallowtails

The simplest dovetail joint, the full-length dovetail, is incredibly strong and, when properly constructed, is truly a matter of beauty. Cleanly cut dovetails will have even, even angles and no gaps between the pins and tails when assembled. This of course has the disadvantage that you need a little patience and skill to tinker through dovetail joints by hand. Fortunately, modern technology has made the task a lot easier than the traditional hand cutting method. With a milling cutter, a dovetail bit, and a dovetail jig, you can create near-perfect dovetails in just a few moments. Here are the keys to creating a quality through dovetail in your woodworking projects.

Semi-blind dovetail joints

While a continuous dovetail is considered a classic joint, in certain cases you may want to only display part of the dovetail. For example, a solid drawer front should not have the dovetail joint, but this is perfectly permissible on the sides of the box. Semi-blind dovetail joints are perfect for such a case. Learn the art of making semi-blind dovetail joints using a router and dovetail template.

Dovetail joints

A sliding dovetail connection is not normally used. However, in certain cases, a sliding dovetail joint can be just what your project needs. A dovetail joint consists of a long groove with angled sides that serves as an end piece for the dovetail joint while a corresponding long pin is cut into the end of the adjacent panel. Some classic pieces of furniture used a sliding dovetail construction for wooden drawer slides that allowed the drawer to slide in and out without moving it up or down. Learn how to make a slide dovetail joint for your furniture or other woodworking projects.

Dovetail devices

Don't want to cut your dovetail by hand? Then you probably want to use a dovetail gauge. Read reviews of different dovetail systems in this series of articles to find out which ones are right for your woodworking workshop. Each of these dovetail devices is associated with the panel to be cut. This allows you to dovetail your router through the wood to cut matching pins and tails for many types of dovetail connections. Not every dovetail template cuts all types of dovetail. So, in addition to the style of the stencil, consider the types of dovetail you will need to cut when choosing a dovetail stencil for your projects.

Box joints - an alternative to the dovetail

Sometimes a woodworking project requires a strong connection, but an intricate dovetail connection may not be an ideal choice. A simpler connection (albeit weaker and not quite as appealing) is the box connection. Think of a box connection as a dovetail connection with square pins and tails. This connection is still made with glue as the main strength of the connection, but without the interlocking ability of the dovetail connection. Fortunately, you can use a table saw and a simple jig to crank out the joints all day. Learn how to make crate joints from this woodworking article.