Getting perfect miter joints - Page 3 - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #41 of 53 Old 10-21-2012, 06:53 AM
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PLEASE, PLEASE go back and reduce the size of your photographs.

George
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post #42 of 53 Old 10-21-2012, 07:43 AM
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PLEASE, PLEASE go back and reduce the size of your photographs.

George
I'm working on it right now, sorry about that. My forum app constantly crashes when I try to upload photos in the app. I was trying another solution, but it isn't working out so well.
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post #43 of 53 Old 10-21-2012, 08:34 PM
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There a couple of options to the power tool techniques that have been discussed so far. I mention them because the power tool techniques are finicky and often do not yield the desired results. But, if you develop hand tool skills and learn to use them properly, them you will come to understand better how things go together plus you will have another arrow in your quiver that you can use when you need it.

The first picture shows a bookcase that I am building. The corner is a mitre joint, right? Look at picture 2. The corner was dovetailed with a mitre at the front end. An advantage to this corner is that it goes together at 90 degrees every time!

The third picture shows a mitre joint that was laid out and cut with a backsaw. No mitre box, no jigs. I know that this is not the joint you are trying to do, but it demonstrates that you do not need power tools, jigs, etc to do mitre joints. BTW, you are looking at the plinth for the book case.
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post #44 of 53 Old 10-21-2012, 11:13 PM
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If there is any interest, I will be happy to show how these joints were done.
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post #45 of 53 Old 10-26-2012, 02:29 PM
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I'm game. I love a good demo!
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post #46 of 53 Old 10-26-2012, 05:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Phaedrus
I'm game. I love a good demo!
Ok, here we go. I will post this in stages.

I am building a "Jefferson Bookcase" for my granddaughter. According to legend, Thomas Jefferson had his library in boxes of different sizes stacked five or six high. When the government bought Jefferson's library, they just laid the boxes on their backs and nailed on covers for shipping.

I have already built the bottom two boxes and the "plinth": the piece that the bookcase sits on. Look at the picture. The boxes appear to be joined with some sort of mitre joint.

In fact, the boxes are dovetailed.

We start with a stack of lumber marked so I will know how deep to cut the dovetails.
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post #47 of 53 Old 10-26-2012, 07:33 PM
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That my friend

Quote:
Originally Posted by Flatlander View Post
I had the same trouble making miter joints for moulding. What I ended up doing was making a shooting board and finishing the miter edges with a hand plane.
It can be very difficult to get a perfect miter even if you have the best machinery, it does not take much to get a slight error in the angle of the joint, a slight movement on your part, a slightly misaligned blade, it does not take much!
Is why Man made caulk & Paint (sarcasm)
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post #48 of 53 Old 10-28-2012, 05:38 PM
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The pictures below show cutting the pin board first. Right now, it looks like a normal pin board with two full sized pins plus two half pins. I cut down to the line with a dovetail saw. Then I mark the waste with X's. I chop the waste out with two chisel strokes: the first one ahead of the line, the second one on the line. After some cleaning up, I am ready to lay out the tailboard.
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post #49 of 53 Old 10-28-2012, 09:23 PM
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Now, it's time to mark out the tails, saw to the line and start chopping out the waste from the interior tails. BUT, the 1/2 tail on the leading edge of the board is NOT through cut. Instead, we make a sloping saw cut on the inside of the case only! Instead of sawing that half tail, we cut it at a 45 degree angle. We also cut the 1/2 pin on the front edge of the pin board on a 45 degree angle to match the mitre on the tailboard. Then we begin to bang the two pieces together.
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post #50 of 53 Old 10-29-2012, 05:25 AM
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Thanks for taking the time to document this. You're making it look easy, even with some rough looking boards. Are you using a template to mark your joints? Also, what kind of saw are you using?
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post #51 of 53 Old 10-29-2012, 06:39 AM
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Thanks for a very nice tutorial.

I am curious. Why do you want it to look from the front like it is a plain miter joint, when in reality it is dovetail?

George
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post #52 of 53 Old 10-29-2012, 08:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Phaedrus
Thanks for taking the time to document this. You're making it look easy, even with some rough looking boards. Are you using a template to mark your joints? Also, what kind of saw are you using?
You're right, the lumber is just big box store construction lumber. The original boxes were also made of pine, so why not?

I do not use a template to mark the joints. The pin board is cut freehand. The completed pins are used as a template to lay out the tails.

My go to saw of the moment is a Veritas Dovetail saw filed rip. I also have a traditional Disston dovetail saw.

And thank you for your kind words. It may look easy, but don't be fooled; I have done nothing but dovetails for the past year and I am still far short of where I want to be. For the record, I screwed up two pin boards doing this little demo.
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post #53 of 53 Old 10-29-2012, 08:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GeorgeC
Thanks for a very nice tutorial.

I am curious. Why do you want it to look from the front like it is a plain miter joint, when in reality it is dovetail?

George
Thank you for the compliment.

I am using the dovetail that looks like a mitre joint in the bookcase because that is thought to be the way that Thomas Jefferson had them done. It originally came up here because of a comment earlier in the thread that it is difficult to make a box with mitre joints glue up square. This joint looks like a mitre, goes together square and, if the dovetails are tight, glue is optional.
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