Dovetail Jigs and size limits - Router Forums
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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-15-2007, 11:33 AM Thread Starter
 
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Question Dovetail Jigs and size limits

Hello all!

I tried searching the existing posts on several forums, but I haven't found anything answering or related to this; so maybe I'm thinking the wrong way.

At any rate, I am in the market for a dovetail jig/fixture. Being that the boss says I can't spend a lot of money, that limits the width of the machine. So, If I purchase a 16" Sears through dovetail machine, how would I go about routing stock greater than 16" (or max size)?

I'm fairly new to woodworking, but the only solution I can think of is to route the stock in smaller pieces. I.e. I want to end up with a 36" wide stock, so I route 3 pieces @ 12" and then glue the pieces to form a 36" piece.

Of course, I see issues with this, I.e. ensuring each piece matches correctly.

So what do you pro's do in this case?

Best regards,

Rick
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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-15-2007, 11:59 AM
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Hi Rick

To do this type of job I would use (buy) 3 of the MLSC jigs and screw them to a block.
End to End ,they come in 15" or 16"
Pins & Tails Through Dovetail Templates
long....http://www.mlcswoodworking.com/shops...vetailjig.html

Something like below but with 3 on a block.

Bj



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Last edited by bobj3; 05-15-2007 at 12:09 PM.
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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-15-2007, 01:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bobj3
Hi Rick

To do this type of job I would use (buy) 3 of the MLSC jigs and screw them to a block.
End to End ,they come in 15" or 16"
Pins & Tails Through Dovetail Templates
long....

Something like below but with 3 on a block.

Bj
Bob,

Instead of buying 3 jigs for the desired width,
do you think it's possible to use just ONE jig to do it... Route one set, move the jig over... overlapping a previous cut for proper alignment, & routing some more... etc. ??

Have Fun,
Joe

Alta Loma, CA

www.WoodworkStuff.net
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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-15-2007, 01:29 PM
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Hi Joe

It would be a hard one,,,, every time he would move the jig over the mounting holes would be off just a bit and that would kill the joint, they must be right from the get go.
No 2nd chance ,he could make alot of 36" wide firewood....in a heart beat...one joint off just a bit would kill the joint at glue up...
You know how screws are they like to take a new path every time you take them out and put them back in, plus they can't hold as well the 2nd or 3rd time in.

Bj

Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe Lyddon
Bob,

Instead of buying 3 jigs for the desired width,
do you think it's possible to use just ONE jig to do it... Route one set, move the jig over... overlapping a previous cut for proper alignment, & routing some more... etc. ??



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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-15-2007, 01:41 PM
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Rick, you didn't mention how thick your material is. If it is 3/4" or less you could use the Oak Park 3/8" box joint jig to make your dovetails. This is by far the least expensive way using a template.

Mike
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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-15-2007, 01:59 PM Thread Starter
 
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So I take it that it's not possible with the equipment in the original post.
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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-15-2007, 02:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bobj3
Hi Joe

It would be a hard one,,,, every time he would move the jig over the mounting holes would be off just a bit and that would kill the joint, they must be right from the get go.
No 2nd chance ,he could make alot of 36" wide firewood....in a heart beat...one joint off just a bit would kill the joint at glue up...
You know how screws are they like to take a new path every time you take them out and put them back in, plus they can't hold as well the 2nd or 3rd time in.

Bj
Bob,

I was not suggesting that the JIG would be changed...

Given: A block of wood with the template mounted on it.
Clamp the workpiece to it and route it...
Unclamp & just slide the workpiece over, to route some more, but overlapping a template (pin or tail) for alignment... Place router into it to be sure.
Clamp and route next segment...
Keep sliding the workpiece down, etc., until done...

Do you see what I'm trying to say now?

(no change in the jig... just the position of the workpiece to the jig)

EDIT:
Text, copied from the MLCS Free Instructions for the Through DT template:

The dovetails/pins and sockets are cut basically the same. First
clamp your stock to the side with the straight fingers centering it
between two registration lines. Mount the 3/4”, 14 degree
dovetail bit and 5/8” guide bushing in your router. Cut out the
dovetails in the stock. Next, mount your second piece of stock on
the other side of the jig, again centering it between two
registration lines. Change to a 3/8” diameter straight bit and
make your cuts. Remove the stock and test fit. Make any
adjustments and when satisfied, make permanent by driving
screws into round holes.

You can cut joints longer than the templates by simply shifting
them along the boards. With practice, you can also vary the
dovetail spacing with the same technique.


Copyright 2006 MLCS ltd. Page 21

Have Fun,
Joe

Alta Loma, CA

www.WoodworkStuff.net

Last edited by Joe Lyddon; 05-15-2007 at 03:45 PM.
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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-15-2007, 03:38 PM
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Hi Joe

I got it now, He could do it that way BUT because the bits use a 5/8" OD bearing on them it maybe tricky to get the 2nd group to line up right (setup right) ,,,1/32" is a big deal when it comes to dovetails and you don't know about the error until glue up time or prefit... and with that many dovetails a prefit could be nasty....without a BIG hammer and a block of wood

Bj




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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-15-2007, 03:48 PM
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Hi rjryerson

You can use the Sears jig but it will be a hard one to setup and glue up.
It takes two parts to make the joint and you are going to compound that with 3ea. 12" wide boards to get the 36" wide you need.
I'm almost you will have gaps in the stock at glue up.
You could use a T&G (on the 12" wide boards) on the edges of the boards that would help hide the gaps.

Bj


Quote:
Originally Posted by rjryerson
So I take it that it's not possible with the equipment in the original post.



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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-15-2007, 03:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rjryerson
Hello all!

I tried searching the existing posts on several forums, but I haven't found anything answering or related to this; so maybe I'm thinking the wrong way.

At any rate, I am in the market for a dovetail jig/fixture. Being that the boss says I can't spend a lot of money, that limits the width of the machine. So, If I purchase a 16" Sears through dovetail machine, how would I go about routing stock greater than 16" (or max size)?

I'm fairly new to woodworking, but the only solution I can think of is to route the stock in smaller pieces. I.e. I want to end up with a 36" wide stock, so I route 3 pieces @ 12" and then glue the pieces to form a 36" piece.

Of course, I see issues with this, I.e. ensuring each piece matches correctly.

So what do you pro's do in this case?

Best regards,

Rick
Rick,

Without a link to Sears showing THE jig you're talking about, I couldn't comment on it specifically...

BUT...

If the the jig is basically just a template, like the MLCS one Bob mentioned, they both should be able to be used in a similar fashion.

See the MLCS jig and the Free Instructions on their website... I 'copied' some key words from their instructions.

According to their instructions, you can route through dovetails as long as you want to make them by just shifting the jig... as noted.

Hope this helps...

Have Fun,
Joe

Alta Loma, CA

www.WoodworkStuff.net
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