Pocket hole - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 22 Old 02-24-2019, 09:47 AM Thread Starter
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Pocket hole

Hello everyone, I'm new to this forum and still trying to figure out my way around. After being away from woodworking for about 30 years, I am a little rusty.
I am wanting to build some wall cabinets in my new shop and have a question.
On the face frame where the rail butts the style, I am planning on using the pocket hole method. Should I consider some other type method?
I thank you for any help you can give.

Andy
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post #2 of 22 Old 02-24-2019, 09:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AndyT View Post
Hello everyone, I'm new to this forum and still trying to figure out my way around. After being away from woodworking for about 30 years, I am a little rusty.
I am wanting to build some wall cabinets in my new shop and have a question.
On the face frame where the rail butts the style, I am planning on using the pocket hole method. Should I consider some other type method?
I thank you for any help you can give.

Andy
While there are many methods of making cabinet faceframes there is nothing wrong with using the pocket hole jig for faceframes. It's what the device was invented for.
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post #3 of 22 Old 02-24-2019, 12:29 PM
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half lap joints make a strong joint for face frames. Although pocket hole joinery is much faster.

Gary
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post #4 of 22 Old 02-24-2019, 02:06 PM
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I like pocket hole just fine for cabinets.
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post #5 of 22 Old 02-24-2019, 04:38 PM
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Originally Posted by gmercer_48083 View Post
half lap joints make a strong joint for face frames. Although pocket hole joinery is much faster.
That's what I did for kitchen cabinet frames before pocket hole jigs were invented.
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post #6 of 22 Old 02-24-2019, 05:50 PM
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I used to work for a cabinet shop that used mortise and tenon joints on the cabinet faceframes. It made the worst faceframes I've made in my career. If the installer didn't handle the cabinets gently it would break the tenons off. If I built a greater volume of cabinets I would probably use a faceplate machine which does the pocket holes. What I'm using now is a single corrugated fastener and toenailing a couple 16ga nails from the edge. I have a gun that shoots the corrugated fasteners so it makes it quick and easy. I've never had a joint fail once the faceframe was on the cabinet.
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post #7 of 22 Old 02-24-2019, 08:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AndyT View Post
...I am wanting to build some wall cabinets in my new shop and have a question.
On the face frame where the rail butts the style, I am planning on using the pocket hole method. Should I consider some other type method?...
Hello Andy,

Welcome to the forum...

This really is more a..."personal choice"...in the style of woodworking you wish to practice, rather than it ever could be a consideration over some other joinery methods...If you like the "pocket hole system" and the kind of joinery it gives you...Go for it!!!

For me, and the work I do, the...traditional mortise and tenon...is the only way I would ever consider creating such a...butt joint assembly. Whether fully traditional mortise and tenon joint or machine cut free tenon system like you find with the Festool Domino Joiner, or with some other Router/table saw jig system to make the joints...this is always going to be the stronger and longer lasting joinery system by comparison...in most (not all) cases...

M&T joints have more than proven themselves for durable over millennia of actual application. There are those like myself that make a living building entire buildings that rely on nothing but different version of mortise and tenon joinery...Needless to say, M&T joinery systems are always going to be stronger and more reliable than a "screw" ever could be......when actual strength and durability is a mandate of its service over the life of a built item...

However...If you want the fastest and least expensive method to joint wood...then a pocket hole joinery system is going to be at the very top of that list. It simply is one of the most DIYer user friendly by comparison to most (not all) other systems out there...

Do you want to do this fast and just get them done, or do you want to actually get back into woodworking that created most of what we see made created from it? You really have to make this decision for yourself?

Good luck, and there is a full spectrum of folks here to offer advise...

Here is a funny (but useful) video (if your into such things?) that speaks to part of your question...

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post #8 of 22 Old 02-24-2019, 08:44 PM
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I noticed he did not glue the pocket hole joints. I would think it would be more comparable to add glue with the pocket holes too.
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post #9 of 22 Old 02-24-2019, 08:56 PM
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Sometimes it comes down to just how secure does the joint have to be, most of us tend to overbuild, not a bad thing, knowing the options never hurts.
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post #10 of 22 Old 02-24-2019, 09:10 PM
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I noticed he did not glue the pocket hole joints. I would think it would be more comparable to add glue with the pocket holes too.
Hi Sam...

He laughed about that too...so he made this one below...

He wrote in his own comment section: "...Before commenting about glue, please see the followup: "
...

Last edited by 35015; 02-24-2019 at 09:25 PM.
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post #11 of 22 Old 02-24-2019, 09:14 PM
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I noticed he did not glue the pocket hole joints. I would think it would be more comparable to add glue with the pocket holes too.

Yeah, I glue mine.

I use pocket hole on cabinets because as a former contractor the first thing we did was usually tear out the cabinets and put in new ones. Even if there is nothing wrong with them. Furniture is a whole 'nother story. I wouldn't use pocket hole on heirloom furniture.
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post #12 of 22 Old 02-25-2019, 12:12 AM
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I have done face frames with pocket screws (Glued of course), Mortise and tenon and dowels.

One of these cabinets was dropped and the 45° edge was broken off where the finished side would have joined the front face frame. When the side was attached the broken piece was re-attached. It was a paint grade cabinet.

I did not see any difference in the strength of these face frame cabinet. Once the wall cabinets are installed, the face frame strength is not that important. IMHO - Pocket screws with TiteBond III are as strong as you are going to need.

Rich
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post #13 of 22 Old 02-25-2019, 08:25 AM Thread Starter
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I appreciate and respect everybody's thoughts and comments.
Thank you for your responses and I'm sure I will have more questions as my project proceeds.
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post #14 of 22 Old 02-25-2019, 11:37 AM
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Be sure to use the right type screws for the type of material your using. Kreg offers course screws for softwoods and plywood. Fine threaded screws for harwoods.
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post #15 of 22 Old 02-25-2019, 12:45 PM
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They seem to like the robertson type heads. I bought a pack with attached washer.
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post #16 of 22 Old 02-25-2019, 09:43 PM
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I could not play the video.

I have seen this guys videos and enjoy them. I would believe the glued screw does not hold as well as the others. But for the face frame and box of a cabinet I do like the speed and ease of screws. I do prefer the look of dovetails on the drawers and not screws!

AndyT good luck with the project and look forward to pictures.

Sam
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post #17 of 22 Old 02-26-2019, 02:04 AM
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One other thing about pocket screw holes. DO NOT use common flat head screws in the holes drilled for the washer head style screw. Flat head screws (counter sink) will split the wood and also make rather weak joints in pocket holes.

Rich
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post #18 of 22 Old 05-20-2019, 09:26 PM
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The pocket hole solution has become popular, you'll find lots of youtube videos using the method. I would like to add my personal opinion that the Porter Cable pocket joint machine is an overlooked wonder. If you are going to buy a pocket hole machine, definitely look at how this one works.
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post #19 of 22 Old 05-23-2019, 08:41 PM
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Maybe not directly relevant, but, I don't use Kreg pocket hole screws with my jig. When using Kreg screws In soft woods, I get broken heads about 1 out of every 40-50 screws, in hard woods I get broken heads about 1 in every 10-15 screws. Extremely annoying, especially in narrow pieces where you may not have room to put in another pocket...

I'm now using Hillman Power Pro washer head screws for pocket holes. Haven't lost a head yet, and they're star drive which work so much better for me.



except where I want maximum strength, then I use USP TimberLok Structural screws.


Top to bottom: Hillman Power Pro washer head screw, Kreg coated pocket hole screw, and USP TimberLok Structural screw.


For my custom sized screened door, which I built the frame and pull handle out of a single piece of 6/4 x 10 3/4" x 10' Poplar (cut down using my bandsaw, and a circular saw), I used pocket holes, and 2 3/4" USP TimberLok screws. I started out with Kreg hardwood screws, but the heads kept popping off before I could close the gaps. Moved to the TimberLok's and no problems. It's a horrible picture, and the door is ready to be taken down, lightly sanded, and re-painted, but:

Last edited by chaosdsm; 05-23-2019 at 08:44 PM.
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post #20 of 22 Old 05-24-2019, 09:24 AM
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Chaosdsm, Are these screws sold at Lowes and Home Depot?

Gary
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