A Strategy for Woodworking #53: Why Not Dovetails?

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Blog entry by Gary Rogowski posted 05-26-2015 07:53 PM 1689 reads 0 times favorited 2 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 52: Taking Down a Tree, Part Two Part 53 of A Strategy for Woodworking series Part 54: Being in the Shop »

Hand cut dovetails are a pain in the butt. So some would say. I say differently. They are a giant . . . delight.

Consider the dovetails below, cut by John in last year’s Resident Mastery Program. This drawer is pretty small. Dovetails are overkill for its strength requirements. And yet they add so much beauty to the piece. And these half blind dovetails are actually easier to cut than through dovetails. Hmm.

Also think about the value of this hand cut work. It’s not just to hold something together forever. It’s a statement about how you consider your own efforts. What you think them to be worth. It’s pretty apparent how Matthew in our current Distance Mastery Group feels about his work. He’s darn proud of it and he should be.

Join us June 15-19 and learn to cut some dovetails with us. Or improve your skills at it. I guarantee that you will get better at the table saw by doing so. And you’ll get better at dovetails too.

Northwest Woodworking Studio Mastery Programs

-- Gary Rogowski...follow my podcast at and twitter @garyrogowski

2 comments so far

View Schwieb's profile


1912 posts in 4340 days

#1 posted 05-26-2015 11:00 PM

I could only dream of having the time and money to be coached on executing this kind of joinery. The string inlays are perfect not to mention the dovetails.

-- Dr. Ken, Florida - Durch harte arbeit werden Träume wahr.

View Roger's profile


21030 posts in 3683 days

#2 posted 05-31-2015 11:22 AM

That is nothing but fine fine fine craftsmanship Gary.

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed. [email protected]

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