Shop made dovetail tools & small assembly hammer

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Project by Glen Peterson posted 02-22-2015 05:24 PM 3533 views 3 times favorited 2 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I’ve been working on a couple of furniture projects and needed some tools for the projects. I’ve been cutting lots of dovetails and wanted a dovetail marker. After looking at lots of examples on Lumberjocks and YouTube I decided to use the design seen in the first photo. It is made of quartersawn cherry. You can see the dovetails behind are nice and tight in quarter sawn white oak. The little block behind the dovetail marker helps when marking pins, a simple yet effective aide that was shown to me by Fine Woodworking art director Mike Peckovich. It is used instead of the side of a bench plane, and has the added benefit of setting the pin board in a vice to the perfect height.

The other project is near completion. I’m building a Greene & Greene style end table in a class at Connecticut Valley School of Woodworking taught by director Bob Van Dyke. Those familiar with the work of the Greene brothers know they used ebony plugs and inserts as decorative elements. The tabletop is shown with a selection of the ebony inserts. I needed a small assembly hammer to set the plugs to the proper depth. Rather than buying a plactic faced hammer I decided to make a small version of the large assembly mallets I’ve made over the years. The plan comes from Woodsmith magazine and includes lead shot in the head. Mine is made of purple heart and maple and has leather on the faces. It is about 9” long, and weighs perhaps 8 oz. Fellow LJ Mafe has a good blog posted of this method and a free plan is available at the Woodsmith site.


-- Glen

2 comments so far

View Andre's profile


4741 posts in 3050 days

#1 posted 02-22-2015 06:04 PM

Like that assembly hammer, may have to add one to the collection!

-- Lifting one end of the plank.

View Jerry's profile


3488 posts in 2892 days

#2 posted 02-22-2015 06:15 PM

Really nice, Glen, I love the craftsmanship. I made a dovetail alignment board awhile back following Robert Baron’s video, you may want to take a look at doing this, it’s been a great help to me in doing hand cut dovetails.

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-- There are good ships and there are wood ships, the ships that sail the sea, but the best ships are friendships and may they always be.

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