When the shovelhead fell to the ground, all he could think of was the face of his neighbor who owned the tool. Not wanting to risk losing access to his well-stocked garage, he tried Gorilla Glue. Two years later, his neighbor still hasn't noticed.
and gluing parts. I had plenty of practice doing both when I built the Shaker-style sideboard you'll find on page 46.
I like joinery work because it tests my skills. I also like the satisfying sound of a joint that slips smoothly and snugly together. Although I aim jjjj|| for a good fit on the first try, I prefer to savor rather than rush the process. In fact, I usually find paring and tweaking a joint to make a perfect fit a very relaxing part of woodworking.
Gluing, on the other hand, makes my adrenaline flow. It demands more attention to the moment. The parts must be test-fitted, an order of assembly determined, the clamps readied, and then I have to go for it. That's not to say gluing has to be frenzied, although sometimes it is. Much like cutting a board to final length, when you glue there's no going back. For me, the satisfaction comes in seeing that all my careful measuring, cutting, fitting and preparing has been worth it. What started as a sketch on a coffee-stained sheet of paper has finally become a reality.
When everything goes well, I not only end up with a project Lhat looks good and functions well, but I also have had the pleasure of spending a good day in one of my favorite places—my shop.
Wishing you lots of success in your shop,
American Woodwork magazine [email protected]
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Use a Router for Biscuit Joinery
I would like to try biscuit joinery but I do not own a biscuit joiner. Is it feasible to use a router to make the slots?
A router with a 5/32-in. slot cutter will work fine for making an occasional biscuit joint. You can alter the slot depth to accommodate No. 0, No. 10 and No. 20 biscuits by using different router bits or by changing bearings.
To cut a biscuit slot with a router, you generally need to make the initial plunge cut and then move the router approximately 1/2 in. left and right of center. It's best to eyeball a couple tick marks 1/2 in. to either side of your biscuit layout mark. With the router running, push the bit in at the left-hand tick mark and slide it to the right-hand tick mark. The resulting slot has a different shape (see photo, above right) but the same joint-holding strength as one made with a biscuit joiner.'
Biscuit joiners do have an advantage when it comes to simplicity and range of possible joints. With a router, it's hard to slot bevels or execute a T joint—although it can be done widi 5/32-in. straight cutter and a fence.
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