Hand Routed Tenons

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Read through the chapter "Lap Joints." There you'll sec several lap-cutting approaches that apply equally well to cutting tenons with a handheld router. You can clamp several rails together and run the cutter across all at the same time, for example.

One useful tenoning jig is designed to help you keep the shoulders square. The fixture is a T-square fastened to a base. It has a stop fence that corresponds to the T-square's crossbar, against which you butt the work. A second fence—a router guide—extends across the fcce of the work and serves both to clamp the work in the fixture and to guide die router. A homemade toggle speeds up the shifting and switching of work-pieces. The guide fence is long enough that you can clamp two or three rails at a time under it, but you may find that it's just as fast and less hassle to cut the tenons one at a time.

To use the fixture, you dog it to die workbench, then clamp the wcrk in it. The stop fence has a dado

Router Techniques

To expedite things, clamp a positioning stop to the stop fence or jig base, as shown. With the pressure off the guide fence, the workpiece should be easy to slide into place, right up against the stop. Push down the homemade toggle to lock the work under the fence.

Ron ring a tenon is much like routing a dado with a T-square. Guide the router along the fence and cut into the work, feeding through into the stop fence (the stop fence presents tear-out). Make as many sweeps as necessary to complete the cut.

To expedite things, clamp a positioning stop to the stop fence or jig base, as shown. With the pressure off the guide fence, the workpiece should be easy to slide into place, right up against the stop. Push down the homemade toggle to lock the work under the fence.

Ron ring a tenon is much like routing a dado with a T-square. Guide the router along the fence and cut into the work, feeding through into the stop fence (the stop fence presents tear-out). Make as many sweeps as necessary to complete the cut.

routed in it, and so long as you always use the same router and bit with the fixture, you can use this dado to line up the work. The edge of the dado, of course, corresponds to the shoulder of the tencn. Guide the router along the fence, and feed toward the stop fence. It will back up the work, preventing tear-out when the bit exits the cut. If the tenon is longer than you can cut in a single pass, make two or three, always feeding toward the stop fence.

Tenoning on the Router Table

Tenoning is a snap on either the router table or the horizontal router table. You need the right bit—a different one for each table—and an easy-to-makc tenoning sled. Then you're ready to go.

The scheme is this: You want to cradle the work in the sled and push it over the bit, making the necessary cut in a pass or two.

On the horizontal router table, this means you adjust the bit extension to control the length of the tenon, and move the mounting board up or down to establish how deep the cut is. One pass should complete the cut into each face.

For example, if you need a Winch-thick by I Winch-long tenon on Winch stock, you adjust the router's depth control to extend the bit \Y«inches, then adjust the mounting board so the bit makes a Winch-deep cut. Set the workpiece in the sled, butt its end against the mounting board, and clamp it. Switch on the router and advancc the sled, making the cut. Pull the sled back, release the workpiece, and turn it over. Reclamp and make another pass. The tenon is done.

Router Technique Tenon

with handle l*. fence is loose. pus44 down to tighten fencel tightest point is wit« hansle level. push man ole down past 4 center to'lock* it.

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Tenoning Sled

The tenoning sled for the regular router table has a fence that extends well bey ond the bit so you can clamp a positioning block to it. The large toggle clamp has the range to accommodate both wide and thick workpieces. Set the workpiece in the sled, butt it against the stop, and clamp it. Then make the cut. Subsequent cuts are made by unclamping the work and backing it away from the bit. More support for the sled and workpiece are gained by making the sled to reference the table's back edge (rather than its front edge).

The horizontal router table is ideal for tenoning, and the sled is an essential part of the operation. The sled's fence hacks up the cut to present tear-out and, as well, provides a mounting for the toggle clamp to anchor the workpiece. Smooth, square tenons can be cut with one pass on each face.

The tenoning sled for the regular router table has a fence that extends well bey ond the bit so you can clamp a positioning block to it. The large toggle clamp has the range to accommodate both wide and thick workpieces. Set the workpiece in the sled, butt it against the stop, and clamp it. Then make the cut. Subsequent cuts are made by unclamping the work and backing it away from the bit. More support for the sled and workpiece are gained by making the sled to reference the table's back edge (rather than its front edge).

The horizontal router table is ideal for tenoning, and the sled is an essential part of the operation. The sled's fence hacks up the cut to present tear-out and, as well, provides a mounting for the toggle clamp to anchor the workpiece. Smooth, square tenons can be cut with one pass on each face.

MORTISING BITi^—1 BOTTOM CLEANING

MORTISING BITi^—1 BOTTOM CLEANING

Horizontal Router Table Sled

¡BIT DRAWER

Here are the bits of choice for cutting tenons. None of them is limited to tenoning; all are useful for other routing operations. Don't feel you need a special-purpose bit for tenoning. You don't.

With the horizontal router table: Use a spiral bit if at all possible. The configuration—up-cut or downcut—is immaterial in tenoning. You aren't using the spiral for its ability to move the chips away from the cut. You are using it for its smooth cut in all sorts of wood.

A H-inch cutting and shank diameter is best (while we're talking about ideal setups). For this operation, unlike for cutting mortises, the entire cutting length will be addressing the work on each pass. You do need a cutting length that matches the length of the tenon.

Though a spiral cuts aggressively, doesn't require a lor of power to drive, and yields that smooth finish, the bit 1 use most frequently, especially for long tenons, is Amana's 2-inch-long '/j-inch straight cutter. What it has going for it is length: It cuts tenons a full 2 inches long.

With the regular router table: Any large-diameter straight bit will do, as will mortising bits. But my favorite is what's sometimes called a bottom-cleaning bit, other times a planer. It's got very short cutting flutes, so it can't cut too deeply in one pass. But in a large diameter, say, 1V2 inches, it can mill a wide swath. The finish, as you might expect from something called a planer bit, is smoooooth.

there s a tenoning sled for every router table

OESTACO TC-202-TII TOGGLE CLAMP

l'x2"x1S" FENCE

z" 5 PINOLE WITH CMC CM NUT AND WING NUT FOR EASY ADJUSTMENT

sled for horizontal router table there s a tenoning sled for every router table

OESTACO TC-202-TII TOGGLE CLAMP

l'x2"x1S" FENCE

z" 5 PINOLE WITH CMC CM NUT AND WING NUT FOR EASY ADJUSTMENT

sled for horizontal router table

Routing Tenons

FENCE PROVIDES BACKUP FOR WORKPlECE , PREVENTING TEAR-OUT.

sled for regular router table

V SPINDLE WITH CHECK NUT AND WING HUT FOR tASV ADJUSTMENT

FENCE PROVIDES BACKUP FOR WORKPlECE , PREVENTING TEAR-OUT.

sled for regular router table

V SPINDLE WITH CHECK NUT AND WING HUT FOR tASV ADJUSTMENT

On the regular table, adjusting the router's depth of cut takes care of the cut depth, and positioning the work in relation to the bit controls the tenon length. Depending upon the bit diameter, you may have to make two or three passes on each face to cut a long tenon.

Make the initial pass with the workpieee positioned in the sled so the cut will establish the tenon's shoulder. Then pull the workpieee away from the bit for subsequent passes, which will clean off the remaining waste. Your first thought may be to use the router table's fence as a stop, to establish that shoulder cut (as you would with a table saw). Bui you can only use the fence for this if you position it parallel to the front edge of the tabletop. It's easier to clamp a stop block to the sled's fence for this purpose. The fence on the sled shown is extralong specifically to allow this.

To make the tenoning sled, cut the base, guide, and fence to size. Glue and screw the fence and guide to the base. The fence must be perpendicular to the guide, which references the front edge of the tabletop. Screw the toggle clamp in place. Our sled has a DeStaCo TC-202-TU clamp.

Cutting Round Tenons

Tenons can be milled on dowels and spindles on either router table using a straight bit and, to hold the work, a V-block fixture.

The V-block is common fixture, used to hold rounds for drilling and the like. What makes this fixture a little different is that it has a plywood base so you can clamp it to the tabletop, and a hold-down to keep the round in the groove while you turn it. It also has an integral stop to control the length of the tenon.

To use the fixture, position it on the router tabletop with the bit protruding through the hole between the V-block and the stop. Measure from the V-block side of the bit to the stop. The distance from bit to stop must equal the tenon length you want, so shift the jig back and forth as necessary. When you've got

Tabletop With Through Tenons
To rout round tenons, feed the spindle into the bit, all the while turning it. The cutter will reduce the diameter of the spindle. The larger the bit diameter, the smoother the tenon wiO be. Here a dish cutter is being used, since a square shoulder isn't required on the chair rung being worked.

ihe setting, clamp the jig to the tabletop.

Loosen the hold-down, and insert a scrap of the round stock to be tenoned. Use the scrap to adjust both the hold-down and the bit height.

The idea of the hold-down is to free both your hands for turning the round and sliding it back and forth. The toggle on one side allows you to loosen the hold-down quickly to switch workpieces. The compression springs ensure you won't have to lift the hold-down to get the work under it. To set the hold-down, lay the test workpiece in the groove and slide it under the hold-down. Lock die toggle, then adjust the wing nut so the work is held firmly enough in the groove that it won't bounce up and down, but not so firmly that you can't turn it.

In adjusting the bit height, start with a very shallow cut, and work up to the proper fit.

To make a cut, you pull the round back in the V-groove so that it is fully clear of the bit. Switch on the router, and slide the round forward in the groove; as it engages the bit, rotate the stock, while at the same time continuing to slide it forward in the groove. Eventually, the end will hit the stop.

page 287 for ideas on cutting tenons that resemble end-laps.

Cam Dowel Modular Kitchen

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BASE SO'

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CAM LOCK HANDLE ; SEE • LAYOUT IN TENONING FIXTURE DRAWING-

PLASTIC KNOB

STOP POST V»**2'x J" HARDWOOD* , DRIVE SCREWS THROUGH BASE INTO POST.

V-OLOCK BASE H'*G"«T HARDWOOO GLUED TO BASE

tew on spindles and dowels with tuis round-tenon CUTTINQ JKj

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Wood Working for Amateur Craftsman

Wood Working for Amateur Craftsman

THIS book is one of the series of Handbooks on industrial subjects being published by the Popular Mechanics Company. Like Popular Mechanics Magazine, and like the other books in this series, it is written so you can understand it. The purpose of Popular Mechanics Handbooks is to supply a growing demand for high-class, up-to-date and accurate text-books, suitable for home study as well as for class use, on all mechanical subjects. The textand illustrations, in each instance, have been prepared expressly for this series by well known experts, and revised by the editor of Popular Mechanics.

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