Dovetail Layout

The drawings at right contrast the layout of drawer dovetails and case dovetails. The pins and tails of drawer dovetails are generally more uniform, as in Figure 1.

Case dovetails can be made with proportionally wider tails — 2l/i to 3 times the width of the pins (Figure 2). Cutting fewer tails means less work without sacrificing any strength. And for more holding power, you can lay out the tails with a greater slope, up to 15°.

Pins and tails are uniform in size and, spacing

Pins and tails are uniform in size and, spacing

Slope of drawer dovetails is

Drawer side

Slope of drawer dovetails is

Dovetails are 2Vi to 3 times the width of pins

Slope of dovetail is 12°to 15°

Dovetails are 2Vi to 3 times the width of pins


Cutting wide tails reduces the amount of work

Slope of dovetail is 12°to 15°

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Questions & Answers

Dust Collector vs. Air Cleaner

Ql'm considering installing either a dust collector or an air cleaner in my basement workshop. My budget only allows for one. Which do you recommend?

Don Evans Gansevoort, New York

A dust collector is hooked up directly to a tool to remove dust at the source.


Dust control equipment is usually one of the last items on the list when setting up a shop. These "tools" are designed for a specific task. So it's a good idea to understand how they work before you decide which one to invest in first. DUST COLLECTOR. Dust collectors (like the one shown at left) are designed to collect sawdust directly at the source. To do this, most tools today have a means of containing the sawdust and H directing it to a dust collection port. From there, the dust collector pulls most of the sawdust through the hose or duct to the collector unit. Heavy particles fall into a bag or container and finer particles are trapped by a filter or a finely woven cloth bag.

AIR CLEANER. An aircleaner unit is usually suspended from the shop ceiling (photo upper right) or mounted along a wall.

Rather than being connected directly to a tool, the air cleaner simply traps the fine dust floating in the air. A fan draws air through a filter at one end of the unit and then discharges the filtered air through the other end.

MAKING A CHOICE. At first glance, it may seem like the air cleaner is the way to go because it filters the air throughout the entire shop, not just from one tool at at time.

But air cleaners really aren't designed to take the place of a dust collector. They don't work too well for collecting the large amounts of heavier sawdust and chips produced by machines like table saws, routers, planers, and jointers.

And if you think about it, the goal of a dust control system should be to

Dusty Work Environment
An air cleaner does a good job of filtering dust particles out of the air, creating a more pleasant working environment in the shop.

prevent dust from getting into the air (and your lungs) in the first place. Since air cleaners remove only airborne dust, it's a little like closing the barn door after the horses have gotten out.

That's not to say that air cleaners aren't useful. They're good for eliminating the clouds of fine dust that usually occur when sanding.This helps to cut down on the amount of fine, powdery dust that settles on tools, workbenches, and other items in a shop.

And if your shop is in a basement, an air cleaner can also help prevent dust from being drawn into your home's heating and ventilation system.

Despite these benefits, if I could only have one tool, I would definitely go with the dust collector. Then when the budget allows, I would add an air cleaner. S3

Do you have any questions for us?

If you have a question related to woodworking techniques, tools, finishing, hardware, or accessories, we'd like to hear from you.

Just write down your question and mail it to us: Woodsmith Q&A, 2200 Grand Avenue, Des Moines, Iowa 50312. Or you can email us the question at: [email protected].

Please include your full name, address, and daytime telephone number in case we have questions.

hardware & supplies

Sources gPilgfggS1


You shouldn't have much trouble finding any of the glues discussed in the article on page 8. Just pay a visit to your local hardware store or home center. If you do have a problem locating a particulartype, try the Woodsmith Store.


Replaceable insert router bits, like Am ana's new In-Tech line, might be the wave of the future. To be on the cutting edge, so to speak, go to Amana's web site to locate a dealer near you. Or take a look in the margin at right.


If you're sold on the benefits of upgrading the tool rest on your bench grinder, you can't go wrong with either option shown in the article on page 14.The Wolverine Grinding Jig is available from either Woodcraft (125676) or Rockier (24707). The Veritas Grinding Jig (05D13.02) comes from Lee Valley.

Another way to get better results from your bench grinder is to install a fast-cutting aluminum-oxide grinding wheel. You can purchase 6"- or 8"-dia. wheels in several grits from Rockier. The contact information is at right.


There are a couple of nice hand tools shown in the article on page 44 that may have piqued your interest.The back saw shown in the main photo is the small tenon saw offered by Adria.The Veritas router plane pictured on page 45 is available from Lee Valley. Lie-Nielsen makes a similar saw and router plane. Check the column at right for more information.


Before starting on the mantel clock on page 16, I ordered the movement and a few other necessary items from Klockit. Here's what you'll need: a six-melody quartz chime movement (12161), a white Roman numeral clock face (26618), a set of hands (66992), a package of turnbuttons (39957), a %"-dia. brass knob (39051), a pair of brass hinges (39212), and a magnetic catch (39011). You'll find contact information at right.


You only need a couple of special hardware items to build the book-rack. The bottom shelf is attached with tabletop fasteners from Rodc/er(34215). I bought a section of steel rod at the hardware store to make the trough supports.


Much of the hardware you'll need to build the trestle table can be found at a hardware store. But you'll have to order a couple of items. The table leaf fasteners (00S10.21) and the table alignment pins (00S10.04) can be purchased from Lee Valley.


On two of the projects in this issue, I let the wood do the talking. The saw till and the oak bookcase are finished "naturally" with several coats of wiping varnish.This simple finish gives the wood a pleasing amber glow.

The finish on the trestle table requires two stains. The dark poplar base is stained with General Finishes Java Gel Stain.The cherry top was stained with our favorite custom mix — 3 parts Zar Cherry Stain to 1 part Jel'd Cherry Stain. I used this same mix to give the desk clock its warm, aged look.

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Woodworking Tools and Installation Tips

Woodworking Tools and Installation Tips

There are a lot of things that either needs to be repaired, or put together when youre a homeowner. If youre a new homeowner, and have just gotten out of apartment style living, you might want to take this list with you to the hardware store. From remolding jobs to putting together furniture you can use these 5 power tools to get your stuff together. Dont forget too that youll need a few extra tools for other jobs around the house.

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