Why make a dovetail joint?

Asked by: Teagan Hughes  |  Last update: 29 June 2021
Score: 5/5 (51 votes)

Noted for its resistance to being pulled apart (tensile strength), the dovetail joint is commonly used to join the sides of a drawer to the front. A series of 'pins' cut to extend from the end of one board interlock with a series of 'tails' cut into the end of another board. The pins and tails have a trapezoidal shape.

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Likewise, people ask, Are dovetail joints better?

Dovetail drawers provide the homeowner with the strongest drawer joints, ensuring the drawer won't come apart even when used every day. They are a good choice for closets and kitchens, because of the heavy use placed on drawers in these applications.

Herein, What do you need to make a dovetail joint?.
Here's what you'll need for cutting a dovetail joint by hand:
  1. Wood blocks or lengths of wood about 3/4 inch thick by 3 inches wide by 5 inches long.
  2. A pencil for marking each piece of wood as needed.
  3. A backsaw.
  4. A coping saw.
  5. Two Chisels in 3/4 inch and 1/2 inch sizes.
  6. A mallet.


Beside the above, What is a dovetail jig and why is it used?

The dovetail jig helps the woodworker to easily make dovetail or finger joints when constructing boxes and furniture items. ... But essentially, a dovetailing jig is a device which holds timber in a vertical position so that each dovetail joint can be cut with a router.

Can you cut dovetails in plywood?

You can make it on a tablesaw, and do it very quickly. In plywood, it is structurally sound. (In solid lumber, it is not so good. There's no face-grain glue surface, and there's short cross-grain sections.

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Can you use a lock miter bit on plywood?

The lock miter CAN work in plywood, but the quality of the ply is a big deal. Cabinet grade ply will give decent joints, poorer quality plywood tends to splinter too much along the thin wedge end. Pre cutting the waste off the edge before milling the lock miter is a big help in getting better quality joints.

What are the disadvantages of a dovetail joint?

The disadvantages of dovetail joints are that they can be fairly difficult to mark out and cut, and if they are made badly these joints lose the advantages listed above. Depending on the project, function, and design, there are a number of different types of dovetail joints to choose from.

What is the best dovetail jig?

This guide will help you choose the best dovetail jig for your workshop.
  • BEST OVERALL: PORTER-CABLE 12-Inch Dovetail Jig.
  • BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK: General Tools 861 Portable Aluminum Dovetail Jig.
  • UPGRADE PICK: PORTER-CABLE 4216 Super JigDovetail jig.
  • BEST CAPACITY: Trend CDJ600 24-Inch Half-blind Dovetail Jig.

What is the point of a dovetail?

Noted for its resistance to being pulled apart (tensile strength), the dovetail joint is commonly used to join the sides of a drawer to the front. A series of 'pins' cut to extend from the end of one board interlock with a series of 'tails' cut into the end of another board. The pins and tails have a trapezoidal shape.

Do you glue dovetail joints?

Dovetail joints show the care and craftsmanship applied to woodworking projects. A few simple gluing and assembly tips make dovetail joint easier to put together. ... The glue can be applied while the pieces are completely separate, which is easier, but can be messy and difficult to fit joints together.

Can you make dovetail joints with a router?

Dovetail joints can be cut by hand as they have been for thousands of years, but power tools such as a table saw or a router and jig make the job much faster and accessible for total beginners.

What is the weakest wood joint?

The butt joint is the simplest joint to make. It is also the weakest wood joint unless you use some form of reinforcement.

Is a finger joint stronger than a dovetail joint?

Frid wrote that finger (or box) joints are stronger than through dovetails because the fingers offer much more glue surface.

Is a dovetail joint stronger than a box joint?

For this test, the box joint proved stronger. Plus, the box joint is strong in both directions, whereas the dovetails are useful only for pulling from one piece, but not the other. So really, to use a dovetail joint for the sake of strength is obsolete, mostly on account of the strength of wood glues.

When did they stop making dovetail furniture?

Hand-cut dovetailing was the default until 1860 when uniform machine-cut joints were introduced. But fine cabinetmakers persisted in fitting their joints by hand until the early 1900s, and cabinetmakers in Europe cut dovetails by hand well into the 1930s.

What is a rabbet joint used for?

A rabbet is basically just a groove or a dado on the edge of your wood piece that creates a lip. That lip can then fit snuggly into a groove. The rabbet joint is incredibly useful for furniture construction that uses panels, such as a small dresser. It's also very useful for cabinet construction.