Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Portland, Oregon
Cutting out dovetails with a coping saw
I feel like an idiot asking such a basic question but... how do you use a coping saw on dovetails (or box joints, etc)?
I have looked over the Internet and searched the forums and couldn't find quite what I was looking for.
My understanding is that you saw out the bottom of the tails with a coping saw. The idea being to cut from the inside out. But... how do you insert the coping saw blade?
What I've been doing is using the drill press to drill a coping saw blade sized hole in the middle of the waste. Then I stick the coping saw blade in there and assemble the saw. And saw out the bottom of the waste.
I'm pretty sure that's wrong. For one thing, the drill hole leaves a rounded out area at the bottom of the waste. This means that the bottom of the cut is not flat and I have a very hard time making the bottom perfectly flat with chisels. And in the process of trying to straighten the bottom out with chisels I often take out too much material.
I had the same problem with box joints.