Router Forums banner
1 - 14 of 14 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have purchased a Leigh TD330 dovetail jig and have just cut my first test piece. The first project has 2-3/4” wide pieces. The jig gave me this:
Wood Wooden block Rectangle Wood stain Flooring

I want equal sized pins and tails. I have watched the videos and read and read the instructions and cannot figure out what I did wrong. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

thank you, Stan Messick
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
58 Posts
I have purchased a Leigh TD330 dovetail jig and have just cut my first test piece. The first project has 2-3/4” wide pieces. The jig gave me this: View attachment 401238
I want equal sized pins and tails. I have watched the videos and read and read the instructions and cannot figure out what I did wrong. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

thank you, Stan Messick
Looks like your side stop is miscalculated for both combs.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Can you please explain how I miscalculated? As it stands right now I have paid around $110 for a jig that I can’t use. So far Leigh hasn’t been able to help because they can’t see what I mean because the photos come up too small.

thank you, Stan Messick

Looks like your side stop is miscalculated for both combs.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
83 Posts
It's not clear what you mean when you say "equal sized pins and tails". In your photo, the top pin looks smaller than the bottom pin. As already mentioned, this is likely due to misalignment of the side stop.

If, however, you want the relative widths of the pins vis-a-vis the tails to be similar, i.e., "fatter" pins, and "skinnier" tails than in your picture, you're asking a lot from this jig. If that's what you want, the only way I can see you doing that is to use thicker boards. They will give you narrower tails and wider pins. The router bits and combs are fixed, so there's not a lot of flexibility in varying dovetail sizes. If you want to adjust pin/tail dimensions to your liking, regardless of the board thickness, you need to step up to the D4R, or try hand cutting.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Can you please explain how I miscalculated? As it stands right now I have paid around $110 for a jig that I can’t use. So far Leigh hasn’t been able to help because they can’t see what I mean because the photos come up too small.

thank you, Stan Messick
Looks like your side stop is miscalculated for both combs.
First test cut.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
58 Posts
Can you please explain how I miscalculated? As it stands right now I have paid around $110 for a jig that I can’t use. So far Leigh hasn’t been able to help because they can’t see what I mean because the photos come up too small.

thank you, Stan Messick
First thing is not to get frustrated. The dovetail king Hammer says they can be intimidating. For drawers, what you typically want is the groove for the drawer bottom to land within the bottom most tail so the groove doesn't show on the side of the drawer. The front of the drawer will have exposed grooves, but they will be hidden once the front is applied. That bottom most groove is going to determine how much of a half pin is going to end up on the bottom. With a fixed comb jig, you don't have a lot of choice as to where the top half pin is going to end up. If you took your pin board and flipped it upside, the half pin that's now on top looks to be about right for the groove to land within the adjoining tail. Try adjusting the edge stop (or side stop) you're using for the pin board so that the bottom half pin matches its half socket. Your instruction sheet should tell how that's done.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
First thing is not to get frustrated. The dovetail king Hammer says they can be intimidating. For drawers, what you typically want is the groove for the drawer bottom to land within the bottom most tail so the groove doesn't show on the side of the drawer. The front of the drawer will have exposed grooves, but they will be hidden once the front is applied. That bottom most groove is going to determine how much of a half pin is going to end up on the bottom. With a fixed comb jig, you don't have a lot of choice as to where the top half pin is going to end up. If you took your pin board and flipped it upside, the half pin that's now on top looks to be about right for the groove to land within the adjoining tail. Try adjusting the edge stop (or side stop) you're using for the pin board so that the bottom half pin matches its half socket. Your instruction sheet should tell how that's done.
I hope that this photo shows what I’m looking for
Handwriting Rectangle Wood Font Tints and shades
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
In all humility, go back and read post #5. An alternative to get "equal" pins and tails is to get a half-blind dovetail jig. I assume you are talking about the relative sizes of pins and tails, and not wanting a different wood species!
Exactly. I have made hundreds of dovetails and every one has tails that are the same size at the top as the pins at the bottom. What I got from the Leigh is like a skip joint with the tails twice as wide as the pins.

The pictures in the users manual show exactly what I want but I don’t how to get it with this jig.

Thanks for your comments.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
58 Posts
Exactly. I have made hundreds of dovetails and every one has tails that are the same size at the top as the pins at the bottom. What I got from the Leigh is like a skip joint with the tails twice as wide as the pins.

The pictures in the users manual show exactly what I want but I don’t how to get it with this jig.

Thanks for your comments.
Exactly. I have made hundreds of dovetails and every one has tails that are the same size at the top as the pins at the bottom. What I got from the Leigh is like a skip joint with the tails twice as wide as the pins.

The pictures in the users manual show exactly what I want but I don’t how to get it with this jig.

Thanks for your comments.
I thought you were having adjustment problems. Without a picture of the jig and templates with associated adjustments I can't help. Sorry
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
83 Posts
My bad! First, a confession: I don't own this jig, so take this for what it's worth (absolutely nothing!). I scanned through the DT330 manual online, and from what I glean the spacing between each finger is set at 1-1/4" (I conclude that based on the table on page 45 (section 7-16) of the manual, which says that even joints are multiples of 1-1/4"). Based on that, I drew a crude diagram of the joints.
Handwriting Rectangle Font Slope Parallel

Trying to wrap my head around the geometry, with the bits included with the jig, the size of the pin "base" (widest part) is determined by the dovetail bit, so is fixed at 1/2". With that, if my math is correct (and certainly open to criticism), theoretically the narrowest the tail would be is ~3/4" (1-1/4" minus 1/2"). I said in an earlier post that pins and tails would become more equal using thicker boards. I'm pretty sure, looking at the drawing, that I was wrong with that suggestion. To the contrary, the thinner the boards, the narrower the dovetail. My apologies!

That said, the only way I can see of making tails and pins about equal (bottom width) with this jig is to use a larger dovetail bit, and perhaps a commensurately smaller straight bit. For the D4R jig, Leigh makes 11/16" and 13/16" dovetail bits. Either of these would make larger pin openings. A smaller straight bit (7/16" or 3/8"?) should then result in larger pins. One way of fine tuning the pin size would be to place shims between the support board and your pin board, which will make the pins slightly narrower. Perhaps the people at Leigh can give you guidance before chasing down various bits. Due to the template side used for cutting tails, you are obviously limited to 8 degree dovetail bits.

Trying to visualize the geometry gives me a headache. FWIW, I feel your pain in having a tool/jig not meeting expectations. I was fortunate to find an older used version of the Leigh D4R, and while it does not allow table mounted routing, is really a nice jig to work with, once dialed in.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thank you, you have gone to a lot of trouble sorting this out and I appreciate it. I have had an ongoing email discussion including photos with Leigh customer service and was unable to make the CSR understand what I am talking about. I think it’s pretty simple and straightforward: the manual shows pins and tails the same width at the tops and bottoms. What I got was double wide tails and single wide pins. I can’t understand why he couldn’t see this.

Bottom line is I’ll have to go back to the Incra jig I have been using and live with it’s drawbacks.

Thank you for pursuing this.

Stan Messick
 
1 - 14 of 14 Posts
Top