Woodworking Talk banner
1 - 11 of 11 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
212 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all new to forum, and not sure if this should be here or in the finishing section. But I making some cat furniture similar to the Habicats, basically two hexagon frames 1x4's with shelves between four of the frame rails, one accross the very top and the other on the bottom and sides, leaving two rails open also using better wood, nicer finish and stronger joints. I decided to use dovetails, but not the normal type but opposing tails, made the jig and they come out very tight almost don't need glue. Using red wood on this one, but plan on using other type wood in the future, if I decide to make for sale. Here is the problem, the joints look ok, but when I stain them, the joints get very dark, even with no stain, and just poly they really stick out. Any idea how to get around this. Thanks
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
212 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
odd...this is a first...most people want dovetails to show.

Other than sanding the end grain and sealing them before finishing I don't know what else you can do.
Might give that a try, be tricky because the joints are quite tight as is, the end joints are what will be against each other, no end grain showing as in a normal dovetail. I wonder about the glue I am using, Titebond III, maybe a different glue that doesn't take stain, any ideas.

I do what them to show, just not quite so drastically. Usually with dovetails you have two different woods to make them pop, but with the same wood and opposing grains, looks good, but the dark line caused by the stain kinda ruins the look, and is more what I am trying to get around. I'll try to take a picture of a scrape piece I am using to test to give you and idea of what I am talking about.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,239 Posts
Hey all new to forum, and not sure if this should be here or in the finishing section. But I making some cat furniture similar to the Habicats, basically two hexagon frames 1x4's with shelves between four of the frame rails, one accross the very top and the other on the bottom and sides, leaving two rails open also using better wood, nicer finish and stronger joints. I decided to use dovetails, but not the normal type but opposing tails, made the jig and they come out very tight almost don't need glue. Using red wood on this one, but plan on using other type wood in the future, if I decide to make for sale. Here is the problem, the joints look ok, but when I stain them, the joints get very dark, even with no stain, and just poly they really stick out. Any idea how to get around this. Thanks
end grain will go dark, use sealer on the tail , like maybe more tht app. to it , do a test, i use dovetales all the time and they go dark when you stain or leve with no stain , you need to use sealer only on the tail's , trial and error ??
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
212 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
Here is what I making from the Habicat website
http://www.habicat-cats.com/
they are not making them right now, got hit hard from the recent floods. I like them but wanted to make them better. End grain usually doesn't hold well so I am using a modified dovetail pins only I guess, mis-spoke before when I said tails. Made my own template, took a while to get them lined up and adjusted. Picture of the original Habicat from their site and a picture of a trial test corner I did, keep in mind it's a test piece, I know the fit is slightly off, I know the top right edge is ragged just focus on the joint itself. Looks like someone used a dark pen to outline the joint. This is what I am trying to get around. Stain soaked in, thinking now it might be the glue, or I may go darker with the stain. maybe should have called it a dovetail finger joint...lol...don't know why people aren't using this, it is SUPER STRONG, don't need clamps for glue up, is always flat with the other piece and will NEVER come loose...but it is a pain to set up. So what do you all think..
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,533 Posts
Thanks, that makes it a lot clearer.

I suspect someone with a lot more experience than me will chime in, but here's my guess. When you stain, some of the stain pools at the joint: it's a depression, however slight, so stain doesn't wipe off as easily. Once it's in there, it may be wicking into the joint and being absorbed by the end grain and creating a darker line. IF that's the case, sealing the end grain and making sure the joint is perfectly flush on the face would help a lot.

That said, I kind of like how the joint stands out, personally.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
212 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Doing some research I wonder if using CrystalLac grain filler then staining might make the joint look better. Never used this stuff, anyone have any experience with it, or some other grain filler. I do want a glass like finish to this, but I don't think an epoxy finish will work on this project, since I need to finish both sides of the rails.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
212 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
My question is what is the benefit of using a dovetail in this application? Wouldn't u get a stronger joint with a mortise/tenon or dowels?
This is something new I am trying, never seen it done before and I am starting to see why..lol...but to answer your question, these are end joints which are notorious for coming apart, this joint (dovetail finger) is super strong, will never come apart. I have done dowels and they are strong, but very hard to do, no matter how well you measure they are always off just a little and they can still pull apart under stress. Thought about the half lap or tenons but they just don't look right. This design has a very high probability of being stressed at the joints. I am looking now into maybe doing the dovetail, but placing an inlay in over the joint, kind of a hidden dovetail using maybe ebony or walnut inlay'd into the oak. Still working on this...haven't made up my mind

edit: Almost forgot, one advantage to this joint, don't need clamps for glue up. The joint is so tight, you just glue and put together and forget. The glue is only needed to keep it from sliding apart, doesn't add to any structural elements. The joint itself provides all the structural strength. No other joint does this.
 
1 - 11 of 11 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top