Wooden dowel for breadboard ends - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 14 Old 01-30-2020, 11:44 AM Thread Starter
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Wooden dowel for breadboard ends

Newbie here and as the title says would wooden dowels suffice to attach bread board ends? I donít have a plate joiner or the router bits necessary, nor have I learned to do tenon and mortise joints. This is my first project and Iím just learning a bit with it. I realize this table wonít last forever, but Iím learning as I go.

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post #2 of 14 Old 01-30-2020, 11:59 AM
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I am no expert, but I don't think dowels driven into the ends of the bread board will allow the field to expand. Never done one yet, but normally dowel pegs are driven in from top into slotted holes of the field's tenon. That's my understanding.
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post #3 of 14 Old 01-30-2020, 12:14 PM
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As explained above, there has to be room for expansion when grains are joined perpendicular to each other, you will possibly end up with a split top.

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post #4 of 14 Old 01-30-2020, 12:18 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the quick replies. I appreciate it. Iím just looking for an easier way to attach without glueing and using pocket holes. I donít plan on this table lasting a life time, but I also donít want it to split in 6 months or less. I guess what Iím saying is Iím looking for a ďmiddle of the roadĒ way to join these.
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post #5 of 14 Old 01-30-2020, 12:37 PM
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TMK there really isn't a better way to attach than using mortise/tenon/tongue and groove. The tenon is in segments 2-3" long with a tongue and groove between. You can do floating tenons also. The key is to use drawbored pins and NO glue except maybe the middle pin.

Google "breadboard tenons" and check YouTube

BTW, You wouldn't use glue and pocket holes for the same reason as dowels.
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post #6 of 14 Old 01-30-2020, 01:43 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DrRobert View Post
TMK there really isn't a better way to attach than using mortise/tenon/tongue and groove. The tenon is in segments 2-3" long with a tongue and groove between. You can do floating tenons also. The key is to use drawbored pins and NO glue except maybe the middle pin.

Google "breadboard tenons" and check YouTube

BTW, You wouldn't use glue and pocket holes for the same reason as dowels.
I donít really have the tools for Mortise/tenons nor the knowledge. Would the dowel method I mentioned be a similar concept to the floating tenons?
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post #7 of 14 Old 01-30-2020, 01:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DrRobert View Post
TMK there really isn't a better way to attach than using mortise/tenon/tongue and groove. The tenon is in segments 2-3" long with a tongue and groove between.....
Not intending to hijack his thread, but why is the tenon segmented when the mortise is full length? As I said I've never done one before.
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post #8 of 14 Old 01-30-2020, 02:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JR7 View Post
Newbie here and as the title says would wooden dowels suffice to attach bread board ends? I donít have a plate joiner or the router bits necessary, nor have I learned to do tenon and mortise joints. This is my first project and Iím just learning a bit with it. I realize this table wonít last forever, but Iím learning as I go.

Thanks
Do you need breadboard ends, unless they are done properly you will be better off without them, your table top will move as it has to, providing it is fastened to the base or legs in a manner that allows it to do so.

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post #9 of 14 Old 01-30-2020, 03:33 PM
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No I don't think there's a viable way to do a breadboard end with just dowels. The holes in the end could be elongated so the table has room to expand with the dowels in place. But without glue, the dowels would offer little support to the end. And applying glue would defeat the purpose. I'm far from an expert but I can't see this working without tenons.
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post #10 of 14 Old 01-30-2020, 05:38 PM
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Poorly executed breadboard ends are worse than no breadboard ends at all. If your table has aprons to hold the top flat I say leave them off.
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post #11 of 14 Old 01-30-2020, 06:51 PM Thread Starter
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Do you need breadboard ends, unless they are done properly you will be better off without them, your table top will move as it has to, providing it is fastened to the base or legs in a manner that allows it to do so.
TBH im not totally sure. I used box store 2x10's for the top and was just going to use a 2x6 on each end for the bread boards. My 2x10's are cut to 66". Would a 66x40 table be large enough to seat 6 comfortably? thanks...

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post #12 of 14 Old 01-30-2020, 07:13 PM
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In that case.......

Quote:
Originally Posted by JR7 View Post
I don’t really have the tools for Mortise/tenons nor the knowledge. Would the dowel method I mentioned be a similar concept to the floating tenons?

Don't do anything. Just let the ends be flush cut and be done with it. Better that than have them split apart from poor joinery techniques.


As to mortises, a long dado as shown in Dr. Bob's photo above, on the breadboard end can be filled with spacer blocks to resemble a series of mortises.


As to tenons, you certainly could use a router to remove the waste ..... easily. However, a series of parallel circular saw cuts and some considerable hand work with a plane a chisel would work well also. You can practice on some scraps before doing the "real deal'. If this were my project, that's the way I would do it. It makes for a real "fine woodworking" detail, like no other method can.


Just remember to leave enough space on either sides to allow for movement AND to only glue the center tenon and mortise, leaving all the other free to move!
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The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)

Last edited by woodnthings; 01-30-2020 at 08:35 PM.
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post #13 of 14 Old 01-30-2020, 07:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JR7 View Post
TBH im not totally sure. I used box store 2x10's for the top and was just going to use a 2x6 on each end for the bread boards. My 2x10's are cut to 66". Would a 66x40 table be large enough to seat 6 comfortably? thanks...
Here are the recommended seating capacities:

https://sonofawoodcutter.ca/blogs/ne...ating-capacity
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post #14 of 14 Old 01-30-2020, 10:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JR7 View Post
TBH im not totally sure. I used box store 2x10's for the top and was just going to use a 2x6 on each end for the bread boards. My 2x10's are cut to 66". Would a 66x40 table be large enough to seat 6 comfortably? thanks...
You could fit 2 on each side and 1 person at each end. with your 40 X 66 table as is. Best way to find out for sure is to actually do it, even if it means temporarily putting the top on saw horses and putting the chairs around it.

Just trying to make your table bigger on the ends (longer) without mortise/tenon proper breadboard ends is probably not going to work.

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