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If you were making a table top or another large top, there is no need to dowel or spline the wood? The glue will hold everything together? Or is that just for a smaller project when gluing up pieces? Also when would you use a spline or dowel?
 

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Biscuits

I'm new to this forum so you should take anything I say with that in mind. I have been an amateur woodworker for over ten years and I have made just about one of everything(I'm retired and have a lot of time on my hands). I have found that every type of joinery has its merit when used properly. Biscuits, pocket hole, mortise and tenon, splines, dowels, traditional glue-ups,etc. are all useful. As for biscuits I have used them very successfully for case frame glue-ups. Contrary to what a few others have said they do add strength to the joint simply because of the added glue surface. I have tried them with plywood and don't recommend it. they will cause the joint to swell because the biscuit absorbs the glue and therefor swells as well.
 

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Hmmm, good to know. I've had in my mind that biscuits would be a good alignment aid. therefor, I've been wanting to obtain a biscuit joiner. I'd still like the tool but it's nice (and somewhat disappointing) to know that it would not help with board alignment with gluing up boards to make wider ones.

I need to re-think my notions of the usefulness of biscuits. Would you say that dowels would be a better way to go to accomplish what I 'm talking about? And, even better, what method would you recommend to minimize the amount of planing required after gluing boards edge to edge?
For gluing up boards, I do what most people don't do. If the boards are straight, I use a joint bit in my shaper. If the boards are bowed, I use a joint bit in my router and stagger boards so the glue-up is straight. I guess it's a European thing, but that is where I learnt woodwork.

It takes a bit of practice, but once you become friends with a joint bit, alignment problems are gone, glue up is a lot easier and there is addititional strength. Strength helps with wood species which do not take glue well, such as Congolo Alves.

I have a biscuit joiner, used it once in the past 8 years and for the life of me can't figure out why I purchased the thing.
 

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John
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For gluing up boards, I do what most people don't do. If the boards are straight, I use a joint bit in my shaper. If the boards are bowed, I use a joint bit in my router and stagger boards so the glue-up is straight. I guess it's a European thing, but that is where I learnt woodwork.

It takes a bit of practice, but once you become friends with a joint bit, alignment problems are gone, glue up is a lot easier and there is addititional strength. Strength helps with wood species which do not take glue well, such as Congolo Alves.

I have a biscuit joiner, used it once in the past 8 years and for the life of me can't figure out why I purchased the thing.
I use a joint bit on my router table occasionally but found I like the wedge t&g better. Hadn't thought about staggering the boards though. Sounds like a good idea, thanks:thumbsup:
 
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