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Problem with porter cable dovetail jig

This is a discussion on Problem with porter cable dovetail jig within the Jigs and Fixtures forums, part of the Routers category; Have been al urker for some time, looking for help, I just purchsed the PC ...


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Old 12-13-2007, 09:52 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Problem with porter cable dovetail jig
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Have been al urker for some time, looking for help, I just purchsed the PC 4212 dovetail jig. I'm having a problem with the parts not lining up. Have cut nice fitting dovetails but the front is about 3/32 out of alignement. The edge of the side is a little lower, than the edge of the front. Anyone have this problem? and did you get it corrected?

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Old 12-14-2007, 12:18 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Welcome to the forums Ldsmith. Glad to have you join us.
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Old 12-14-2007, 12:54 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Old 02-12-2008, 06:23 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Same problem
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New to the forum. I just got this jig and though it works well I have the same problem with the pieces not lining up correctly when put together. I don't see any replies here, any help or ideas?
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Old 02-12-2008, 06:51 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Welcome to the forums Marcus. Sorry I can't answer your question, I don't have a dovetail jig.
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Old 10-20-2012, 04:21 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Solution to alignment problem
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I had the same problem. The problem lies in the alignment stop on the left hand side of the jig. This sets the offset between the horizontal board and the vertical board. For the large jig, this is 1/2 inch. The problem is the manual says position the vertical board centered between the pins of the jig and then slide and lock the alignment jig against the vertical board, and you will have a stop for the horizontal board with the correct offset. The problem is the alignment stop doesn't lie perpendicular to the jig when you press it firmly against the jig. So this throws off the alignment between the top and bottom boards. The way I got around this is to position the vertical board between the pins and square it up using the dovetail template. Then remove the template and position the horizontal board perpendicular to the vertical one, and offset it 1/2 inch to the left. Lock these boards in place with the jig clamps. Then slide the offset stop against both boards and tighten the lock screw. You won't be square with the offset stop, but you only need to touch the boards in two points, one for the vertical board and one for the horizontal.
I don't know why they don't do a better job with this part.
Once you get this working, the next item is depth of cut. 1/64 can make the difference between a tight fit and a loose fit. After this is dialed in, then adjust the template position if needed forward or backward. If the depth is not right, you'll never get it dialed in.
Pain in the butt to learn to use. I must have made 50 joints before it made sense.
Sorry this is a few years after, but just bought mine and was searching for solutions myself.
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Old 10-20-2012, 07:37 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Don't have one but I understand there is some good info here...
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File Type: pdf SupplementalManual.pdf (4.78 MB, 27 views)
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Old 10-22-2012, 09:01 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Good reference
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This is a good additional manual. One of the best items is the simple addition of a set screw to lock in the template locator. This uses 16 threads per inch. Next time, hey should use something finer. One revolution is a 1/16 th when you are trying to work at 1/64 th. Just buy a 3/8-16 nut at lowe's. This is an essential addition for reproducibility.
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Old 11-03-2013, 12:09 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Solution to Allignment Problem
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hgrant0617 View Post
I had the same problem. The problem lies in the alignment stop on the left hand side of the jig. This sets the offset between the horizontal board and the vertical board. For the large jig, this is 1/2 inch. The problem is the manual says position the vertical board centered between the pins of the jig and then slide and lock the alignment jig against the vertical board, and you will have a stop for the horizontal board with the correct offset. The problem is the alignment stop doesn't lie perpendicular to the jig when you press it firmly against the jig. So this throws off the alignment between the top and bottom boards. The way I got around this is to position the vertical board between the pins and square it up using the dovetail template. Then remove the template and position the horizontal board perpendicular to the vertical one, and offset it 1/2 inch to the left. Lock these boards in place with the jig clamps. Then slide the offset stop against both boards and tighten the lock screw. You won't be square with the offset stop, but you only need to touch the boards in two points, one for the vertical board and one for the horizontal.
I don't know why they don't do a better job with this part.
Once you get this working, the next item is depth of cut. 1/64 can make the difference between a tight fit and a loose fit. After this is dialed in, then adjust the template position if needed forward or backward. If the depth is not right, you'll never get it dialed in.
Pain in the butt to learn to use. I must have made 50 joints before it made sense.
Sorry this is a few years after, but just bought mine and was searching for solutions myself.
Thanks for above which is very useful.

Can you clarrify what you mean say "dialed in" with respect to depth of cut?
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