Mitered cabinet door joinery - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
 
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post #1 of 8 Old 05-06-2016, 10:03 PM Thread Starter
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Mitered cabinet door joinery

I've been working on a cabinet build for quite some time now (my first "real" project), and have just finished milling the stock for the doors. I had planned to make mitered corners on the doors, since I would like to make a profile that I don't think will work for a traditional door.

I'm having some trouble figuring out how to make the miters sturdy enough for a cabinet door thought. I initially thought that I would make splined miters, but I am using only hand tools (that's all I have right now besides a circular saw), and am not sure how best to cut the slots for the splines.

Basically, I can mark and cut the edges of the slots, but I am uncertain of how to clear out the waste. I was planning to use a chisel, but I'm a little worried that the force I'd apply with the chisel may end up destroying the glued up mitered corner.

The other thing I considered was through-doweling the corners, but I'm not sure of this will look that great, or even if it would be as strong as a spline would be.

Any tips on cutting splined miters by hand? Or other ideas for the joinery? Pictures would also be greatly appreciated.
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post #2 of 8 Old 05-06-2016, 10:11 PM
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You might use biscuits in the joints or dowel it. A biscuit cutter or a doweling jig doesn't cost very much.
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post #3 of 8 Old 05-06-2016, 10:55 PM Thread Starter
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Right. I do have a doweling jig, but the molding I'll be cutting won't offer a flat face to register the jig to on the front face. Maybe the back being flat will be enough for the jig to still work... I'll have to experiment with that. Biscuits I hadn't considered. Don't own a biscuit jointer, but I know someone who does... Interesting.
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post #4 of 8 Old 05-08-2016, 12:41 AM Thread Starter
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So, I actually ended up attempting a splined miter on a picture frame as a test piece. I was concerned that chiseling out the waste on a glued up miter joint would damage the joint (especially as difficult as red oak is to chisel), but while cutting the sides of the slot with my back saw, I realized I could hog out most of the waste by making several additional relief cuts, then running a coping saw across the bottom!

Chisels were only needed to refine the edges and bottom. The procedure kind of reminded me of cutting dovetails by hand, which I recently had a lot of practice doing while cutting carcass dovetails for the cabinet.

I haven't cleaned up the joints yet, but they looked reasonably tight. Better than my hand cut dovetail joints did, anyway.

Last edited by jeremymcon; 05-08-2016 at 12:47 AM.
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post #5 of 8 Old 05-08-2016, 12:00 PM
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It is too late now but next time I would try lapped miter joints for the doors.
http://sawdustmaking.com/woodjoints/halflap.htm

Wise men speak because they have something to say; fools because they have to say something -Plato

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post #6 of 8 Old 05-12-2016, 04:32 AM Thread Starter
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I like the lapped miter! Hadn't considered that either. The splined miters I cut were on a picture frame, not the actual project.
. Only problem I see with the lapped miter is that I can't tune it with my shooting board... Something I'll have to think about. Here's the splined picture frame:
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post #7 of 8 Old 05-14-2016, 12:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jeremymcon View Post
I like the lapped miter! Hadn't considered that either. The splined miters I cut were on a picture frame, not the actual project.
. Only problem I see with the lapped miter is that I can't tune it with my shooting board... Something I'll have to think about. Here's the splined picture frame:
You'll have to consider expansion and contraction with that joint. Your better off sticking to a spline.

There has been talk at our company about expanding into high end cabinetry and commercial. Mitered doors will be at the top of the list for competition. This shop rubbed me wrongone time and will be the first on my knock em off the top of mountain list http://www.britishtraditions.com/cabinets.html
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post #8 of 8 Old 05-14-2016, 03:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Neul View Post
You might use biscuits in the joints or dowel it. A biscuit cutter or a doweling jig doesn't cost very much.
I do quite a few mitered doors every year and biscuits are the way to go.

As you said, The cutters for doing so are inexpensive no matter if using a shaper or a router table. (I use both depending on circumstances)
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