Cutting dovetails
#21
  Re: Cutting dovetails by Smoothjazz077 (I consider myself a ...)
One thing I would suggest is don't layout the tails, or worry about the 1:7 ratio or whatever...  just eyeball em, and cut away.  Like said earlier, the most important cut is the squareness of the tail cut.  The rest of the imperfections will be "ok".  

Also, fully expect for your 4 corners of this cabinet to get better as it goes along... plan your most hidden joints to be cut first... damhikt.
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#22
  Re: Cutting dovetails by Smoothjazz077 (I consider myself a ...)
My biggest problem when cutting dovetails is getting too aggressive chiseling to the line. If you try to chisel too much waste with the first couple of taps of the mallet, you can compress your baseline. If the wood is soft, it does it really badly.
I cut most of my waste away with a coping saw. Then I set my chisel in the cut baseline and tap very gently all the way across a couple of times. Then I go a little harder the next time. Once you get a good start that isn't smashing your line, you can chop more vigorously.
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#23
  Re: Cutting dovetails by Smoothjazz077 (I consider myself a ...)
Thanks for the article.  I will certainly take Chris's advice.
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#24
  Re: Cutting dovetails by Smoothjazz077 (I consider myself a ...)
Another helpful hint from the Schwarz: when removing waste, place your chisel so as to remove half the waste. Then chisel out half of that. And so on until you can't go "half" anymore and have to place your chisel right at the baseline.

I really like using a coping saw to remove most of the waste first, and then chisel back to he line.
Steve S.
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#25
  Re: Cutting dovetails by Smoothjazz077 (I consider myself a ...)
(02-28-2017, 03:43 PM)elinourrumming Wrote: My best advice is stolen from Schwarz: Cut a DT corner every day for month. On day 2, examine the "problems" from day 1, and try to correct them. On day 3, examine the day 2 joint and so on. After 30 days, you'll be quite good. (It's how I train any PW staff members who want to learn hand-cut DTs – fun lunch breaks, eh?)
http://www.popularwoodworking.com/woodwo...tail-a-day

Ditto to this. I'll just add that it doesn't even take 30 days. I remember my first attempt at making a dovetailed box. I cut one joint right after each other, going counterclockwise. After I was done, you could turn the box around and see my dovetails improving one corner at a time.
Hail St. Roy, Full of Grace, The Schwarz is with thee.
Blessed art thou among woodworkers, and blessed is the fruit of thy saw, dovetails.
Holy St. Roy, Master of Chisels, pray for us sharpeners now, and at the hour of planing.
Amen.
$300 is a lot of Money!
giant Cypress: Japanese tool blog
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#26
  Re: Cutting dovetails by Smoothjazz077 (I consider myself a ...)
(03-01-2017, 03:23 PM)Bibliophile 13 Wrote: Another helpful hint from the Schwarz: when removing waste, place your chisel so as to remove half the waste.  Then chisel out half of that.  And so on until you can't go "half" anymore and have to place your chisel right at the baseline.  

Weirdly, Zeno was never able to finish a dovetail  Wink
Hail St. Roy, Full of Grace, The Schwarz is with thee.
Blessed art thou among woodworkers, and blessed is the fruit of thy saw, dovetails.
Holy St. Roy, Master of Chisels, pray for us sharpeners now, and at the hour of planing.
Amen.
$300 is a lot of Money!
giant Cypress: Japanese tool blog
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#27
  Re: Cutting dovetails by Smoothjazz077 (I consider myself a ...)
Cutting dovetail baselines - below is an extract from an article on my website ...


[Image: DovetailBaselines_html_42fe2d70.jpg]



The cutting gauge creates a deeply scored line, which is perfect for the next step, which is the undercutting the baseline with a chisel ...

With cabinets I am not a fan of the scored baseline. Consequently I choose to score deeply only between the pins. This is only necessary on the outer boards, not the inside as the latter will not be seen.

At this point I remove most of the waste with a fretsaw, leaving about 1/8” above the baseline. Too much less than this and it is more difficult to undercut the line.
Once this is completed the next step is to chisel out a fence by undercutting the scored lines.

[Image: DovetailBaselines_html_38c6e9c.jpg]

[Image: DovetailBaselines_html_1fbdd43d.jpg]

[Image: DovetailBaselines_html_m712ec708.jpg]


Once all the undercutting is done it is time for chopping/paring out the waste.

With the undercut fence in place the coplanarity of the baseline is ensured. If one instead placed a chisel in a cut line, such as from the marking gauge, the triangular shape of the chisel bevel would drive the blade back beyond the line. The fence prevents the blade from moving beyond the baseline.

I prefer to work from the back of the board first, leaving the show side for last. There is no danger of damaging the show side as the waste is only removed to the midpoint (by contrast, always saw from the show side as it is easier to monitor the kerf approaching the baseline).


[Image: DovetailBaselines_html_m65f9e5ef.jpg]

An alternative to the above, which is my current practice, is to undercut the baseline before removing the waste ...


[Image: ThroughDovetails3_html_1c5285f4.jpg]



Once the tails are sawn, deepen the baselines and undercut them to create a chisel wall. Then saw away the waste ..

[Image: ThroughDovetails3_html_58c6a915.jpg]

You can now pare away the last remnants with the chisel against the knife wall. This will prevent the blade moving back over the baseline.

Regards from Perth

Derek
Articles on furniture building, shop made tools and tool reviews at http://www.inthewoodshop.com
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#28
  Re: Cutting dovetails by Smoothjazz077 (I consider myself a ...)
Again....everyone is over thinking this.. Rolleyes

And..IF I can make fairly decent dovetails......with simple tools...it can not be all THAT hard to do.


Mark them
saw them
chop them
clean them up
assemble and move on.....
   

Just practice, practize and  have fun. Winkgrin
Show me a picture, I'll build a project from that
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#29
  Re: Cutting dovetails by Smoothjazz077 (I consider myself a ...)
(03-02-2017, 01:57 AM)Derek Cohen Wrote: Cutting dovetail baselines - below is an extract from an article on my website ...


[Image: DovetailBaselines_html_42fe2d70.jpg]



The cutting gauge creates a deeply scored line, which is perfect for the next step, which is the undercutting the baseline with a chisel ...

With cabinets I am not a fan of the scored baseline. Consequently I choose to score deeply only between the pins. This is only necessary on the outer boards, not the inside as the latter will not be seen.

At this point I remove most of the waste with a fretsaw, leaving about 1/8” above the baseline. Too much less than this and it is more difficult to undercut the line.
Once this is completed the next step is to chisel out a fence by undercutting the scored lines.

[Image: DovetailBaselines_html_38c6e9c.jpg]

[Image: DovetailBaselines_html_1fbdd43d.jpg]

[Image: DovetailBaselines_html_m712ec708.jpg]


Once all the undercutting is done it is time for chopping/paring out the waste.

With the undercut fence in place the coplanarity of the baseline is ensured. If one instead placed a chisel in a cut line, such as from the marking gauge, the triangular shape of the chisel bevel would drive the blade back beyond the line. The fence prevents the blade from moving beyond the baseline.

I prefer to work from the back of the board first, leaving the show side for last. There is no danger of damaging the show side as the waste is only removed to the midpoint (by contrast, always saw from the show side as it is easier to monitor the kerf approaching the baseline).


[Image: DovetailBaselines_html_m65f9e5ef.jpg]

An alternative to the above, which is my current practice, is to undercut the baseline before removing the waste ...


[Image: ThroughDovetails3_html_1c5285f4.jpg]



Once the tails are sawn, deepen the baselines and undercut them to create a chisel wall. Then saw away the waste ..

[Image: ThroughDovetails3_html_58c6a915.jpg]

You can now pare away the last remnants with the chisel against the knife wall. This will prevent the blade moving back over the baseline.

Regards from Perth

Derek

Trying to understand "With the undercut fence in place the coplanarity of the baseline is ensured." The baseline's coplanarity with what? TIA
If you're gonna be one, be a Big Red One.
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#30
  Re: Cutting dovetails by Smoothjazz077 (I consider myself a ...)
Coplanar = a straight line

In other words, the baselines of each dovetail line up with each other. 

Context: the question answered was how to avoid pushing back the baseline as a result of poor technique. My suggestion was simply to create a chisel fence for each baseline.

Regards from Perth

Derek (speaking Australian/British English Smile )
Articles on furniture building, shop made tools and tool reviews at http://www.inthewoodshop.com
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