An ABC of Basic Dovetailing

An ABC of Basic Dovetailing

Our step-by-step guide to an essential array of dovetailing techniques


As a means of holding two pieces of solid wood together at a corner, regardless of their width and thickness, the dovetail is probably second to none. The basic dovetail is also the joint that causes the most anguish in the workshop, although some woodworkers tend to think more positively about the challenge that it represents, often designing it into a piece just because they enjoy the simplicity of a joint where one half acts as a template to form the second half.

Although the dovetail can be machine-cut using a jig, hand methods are quick and involve a minimum of tools: a sharp, fine-toothed dovetail saw, marking knife and gauges, some well-honed chisels, and a coping saw will do the job; and if you supply the practice and patience, they’ll do a really good job!

Read the full article in The Woodworker October 2017

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