Dovetails are the hallmark of finely crafted furniture; they are attractive, strong and can elevate a project from the average to extraordinary. Their limiting factor for most woodworkers has always been the level of skill required to execute them.
While there is obviously a role for hand cut dovetails, particularly in custom furniture, there is likewise a time and place for machine cut dovetails. In a kitchen with 30 drawers there would be 120 corners to cut. That’s a lot of chisel and saw work. While it might take you three or four days to cut all the joints by hand, you could easily cut them in a day using a dovetail jig.
Mortise and Tenon joinery is both attractive and structurally solid. Because of that it is one of the most widely used joinery in woodworking, with uses ranging from traditional frame and panel doors to furniture.
There are a wide variety of M&T joints, with the most common being the ‘stopped’ (blind) joint. Other frequently used joints include the through, wedged, pinned, haunched, double (twin) and offset (barefaced). All of these joints share two common features: a ‘mortise’, which is simply a square or rectangular recess into which a tongue, the ‘tenon’, is inserted. The typical configuration is that the mortise is cut on a stile, and the tenon on a rail. The tenon itself is typically smaller in width and thickness than the rail on which it is cut. Once you know how to make a stopped mortise and tenon joint, you can apply the principles to any kind of M&T joint.
Making a dollhouse is much like building a conventional house – it takes time and patience. While there are a lot of pieces to this challenging project, they are not overly complicated to cut and assemble.
This dollhouse is one of the most requested project plans from our magazine. And no wonder it’s a heirloom project that can be enjoyed in the present and passed down for generations.
Mortise and tenon joinery is both attractive and structurally solid. Because of that it is one of the most widely used joinery in woodworking, with uses ranging from traditional frame and panel doors to furniture.
In this article Michael Kampen explains everything you need to know for you to cut precise stopped M&T joints.