Single Blade Box Joint Jig

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Project by TheWoodfather posted 02-04-2015 11:06 PM 10037 views 48 times favorited 23 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This is my Single Blade Box Joint jig of my own design. It means I can easily make proper box joints without the need for a dado / stacked blade set.

How does it work? Your work pieces clamp to a sliding fence which follows a template via a ‘key’. You make your cut, slide the fence over and make another cut. The key limits the range of movement based on the cutting layout you have set up.

It only took an hour or so build this one, this is the second version, and the results are great.
The photos above show a joint in pine straight off the jig, then glued and sanded.

The drawer photos show two different box joint layouts, it takes literally two seconds to change your layout around. I haven’t pushed it too far with the different combinations available but I will try to do that soon. I’d like to make something that has a thick finger, two thin ones, one thick, one extra thick, etc. I think that would look really cool.

I’ve made a video of the build and you can also download the plans from my site by clicking here.

View on YouTube

Let me know what you think, I’m rapt with how it turned out, but I’m 100% positive that people will be able to improve on it.


-- - Here, for learning.

23 comments so far

View mariva57's profile


666 posts in 3286 days

#1 posted 02-04-2015 11:22 PM

Did you have a brilliant idea, compliments.

-- The common man thinks. The wise man is silent. The stupid man discusses.

View tjdv's profile


66 posts in 3975 days

#2 posted 02-05-2015 01:31 AM

Very clever design. And thanx much for the plans.

-- At least in the Navy no one ever told me to put the seat down.....

View CharlieK's profile


605 posts in 5075 days

#3 posted 02-05-2015 02:39 AM

Nice job, Mario.

Thanks for sharing the plans!!


-- Adjustable Height Workbench Plans

View mahdee's profile


4291 posts in 3049 days

#4 posted 02-05-2015 03:39 AM

Cool jig.
Thanks for the plan.


View NormG's profile


6574 posts in 4286 days

#5 posted 02-05-2015 03:41 AM

Great idea and well executed

-- Norman - I never never make a mistake, I just change the design.

View Ivan's profile


17046 posts in 4149 days

#6 posted 02-05-2015 06:30 AM

Nice video. I like the project since my table saw is not capable to accept dado blade set.

-- Ivan, Croatia, Wooddicted

View Don Johnson's profile

Don Johnson

743 posts in 4063 days

#7 posted 02-05-2015 01:31 PM

Impressive. Using the little blocks all cut with the same setup is a clever way to ensure that the ‘template’ is accurate. As the register pin does not rotate, filing flats on each side of a slightly large diameter bolt should be OK. Also I like the use of the rule during setup. Lastly, using pocket hole fixing certainly facilitates speedy jig construction- I hate having to wait for glue to dry! You join my list of ‘subs’! 

-- Don, Somerset UK,

View Roger's profile


21055 posts in 4086 days

#8 posted 02-05-2015 01:34 PM

Some gr8 engineering and fabrication, plus, easy on the wallet. Good stuff.

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

View Bricofleur's profile


1482 posts in 4475 days

#9 posted 02-05-2015 02:41 PM

Clever, all the way ! Hat’s off ! Thanks for sharing.



-- Learn from yesterday, work today and enjoy success tomorrow. --

View StumpyNubs's profile


7853 posts in 4082 days

#10 posted 02-05-2015 03:00 PM

This is a great idea. I’d like to show it on this weekend’s episode of “Behind the Sawdust” if you don’t mind?

-- Subscribe to "Stumpy Nubs Woodworking Journal"- One of the crafts' most unique publications:

View shipwright's profile


8760 posts in 4080 days

#11 posted 02-05-2015 03:17 PM

Nice jig. I hate using dado packs. I almost always use multiple passes with a single blade.
Now there will be a box joint jig on my shelf.


-- Paul M ..............the early bird may get the worm but it’s the second mouse that gets the cheese!

View TheWoodfather's profile


135 posts in 2968 days

#12 posted 02-05-2015 03:34 PM

Thanks everybody for the comments, much appreciated.
I’m still in a little shock that this hit the Daily Top3, nice little personal milestone there :-)
I hope the plans are understandable enough, yell out if I didn’t show something clearly.

@Stumpy – Mate, please feel free to share it on the show, I’d love that, thanks so much!

-- - Here, for learning.

View Dan Krager's profile

Dan Krager

4819 posts in 3516 days

#13 posted 02-05-2015 03:55 PM

This is a very clever jig. I had been working on a more universal router jig using the same principle, but it got pushed into the background in favor of other work. Nicely presented in the video too!

I couldn’t get the Sketchup file…not linked yet?

It would be cool to see some examples of variable spacing. It’s not as easy as it seems first glance. The problem is that the pieces to be cut are offset the width of the first finger. If there is a change in the spacing somewhere in the row, the offset won’t be right for it. Doesn’t mean it can’t be done though, just requires an offset adjustment between the two pieces and another pass for each different spacing involved. I think that might work, but it’s untried. Kinda tedious but worth the effort in some cases.

Great work, Woodfather.

-- DanK All my life I've wanted to be someone. I see now I should have been more specific.

View John Olsen's profile

John Olsen

36 posts in 2873 days

#14 posted 02-05-2015 04:36 PM

Cool jig. I like how it can easily do flat bottomed cuts, unlike my screw advance jig.

It looks like you can use a single size of pattern block, tipping the long end up to catch the pattern following screw, and tipping them down to miss. Then you just flip the down and up bits to cut the matching pieces with any arbitrary pattern. I really like that.

I also have a problem with mine since it’s a pain to use if my blade isn’t exactly a 1/8 inch kerf. Yours avoids blade thickness completely by matching kerf to the follower screw size. Simple design avoiding complex problems, for the win!

View Dan Krager's profile

Dan Krager

4819 posts in 3516 days

#15 posted 02-05-2015 06:25 PM

Here’s an example of what I couldn’t overcome for variable spaced finger joints in a jig like this.

Did I miss something? Would be really neat to make it work somehow…

Here is a router jig for variable spaced fingers, and it may give some ideas for this.

-- DanK All my life I've wanted to be someone. I see now I should have been more specific.

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