Dovetail Jig Workcenter

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Project by Geedubs posted 09-14-2009 09:30 PM 16584 views 34 times favorited 22 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I recently purchased a Porter-Cable 4212 dovetail jig and checked out a great video at when considering various dovetail jig choices ( ). Not only did I select the 4212 as a purchase but also decided that the dovetail jig workcenter shown in the video also made sense. So, I purchased the plans from and made it my first dovetail project. I generally stuck with the workcenter plans except for the following. I had access to purchasing some recycled straight-grain fir so I made that purchase and planed it to 1/2” for the basic box construction. I used some leftover poplar that I had from a previous project and used that for accent and when 3/4” stock was called for. Rather than purchasing more expensive pre-manufactured threaded knobs, I used round wooden balls, drilled them to receive 1/4” threaded bolts…then cut the heads off the bolts and epoxied them to the ball knobs. Also, it just seemed like sacrilege to make the drawer and not use dovetails, so I modified the drawer face to 3/4” stock and used blind dovetails to connect it to the 1/2” fir drawer sides. I stained the knobs and stops mahogony and then finished the rest of the workcenter using linseed oil. The jig is taking me a while to get used to but I’m making progress. I really recommend the workcenter as a way to both store the jig/accessories and get the jig to a better working height.

-- Todos los dias aprendemos algo nuevo.

22 comments so far

View woodworm's profile


14476 posts in 4202 days

#1 posted 09-14-2009 09:41 PM

PC DT jig its self is beautiful & very useful – the additional workcenter make it more handy. Great job and thanks for sharing.

-- masrol, kuala lumpur, MY.

View RKW's profile


328 posts in 4059 days

#2 posted 09-14-2009 09:46 PM

Nice job Geedubs, I too purchased the 4212 jig after watching the same podcast. Good job on the workcenter, maybe some day. Too many other priorities right now. Best part is the heighth, I have to slunch over when i use mine. Well worth the time and effort. Enjoy!!!

-- RKWoods

View degoose's profile


7265 posts in 3966 days

#3 posted 09-14-2009 09:52 PM

The web address has the last bracket included. I have a Leigh and will be looking at the workcentre seriously.
Thanks for the post.. the working height is important when you are over 6’ tall.

-- Don't drink and use power tools @

View Geedubs's profile


143 posts in 3841 days

#4 posted 09-14-2009 09:59 PM

Thanks degoose. I think I fixed the URL reference.

-- Todos los dias aprendemos algo nuevo.

View SgtSnafu's profile


960 posts in 3883 days

#5 posted 09-14-2009 10:02 PM

I have this same jig (yet to use) and have seen the plan. You did a great job on it, I can only hope mine turns out as well.. Thanks for sharing.

-- Scotty - aka... SgtSnafu - Randleman NC

View Bricofleur's profile


1467 posts in 3805 days

#6 posted 09-14-2009 11:59 PM

Nice job! I remember having seen this plan in the magazine, but using real wood makes it look “high class”. Congrats !

And hat’s off for having used dovetail joinery for the drawer. Another point here.

RKW - If you want or need to raise your dovetail jig to a more comfortable height, build yourself this Benchtop Router Horse. It’s easy to build, it raises the jig and/or any workpieces, and also provides the left vertical support to rout ends of narrow workpieces. Wide workpieces can be clamped to the front side to rout their edges too, needing to use another method than C-clamps to hold it down on the workbench.

Benchtop Router Horse



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

View navyman's profile


151 posts in 4017 days

#7 posted 09-15-2009 12:24 AM

that’s great detail.

-- Michael . USN ( Ret ) Batesville,AR

View bear2's profile


29 posts in 3788 days

#8 posted 09-15-2009 01:08 AM

Super nice

-- It isn't always about being fast or even accurate that counts, it's being willing

View a1Jim's profile


117915 posts in 4189 days

#9 posted 09-15-2009 01:46 AM

All the bells and whistles and fine set up well done.


View Beginningwoodworker's profile


13345 posts in 4284 days

#10 posted 09-15-2009 01:48 AM

Nice dovetail jig.

View Innovator's profile


3589 posts in 4025 days

#11 posted 09-15-2009 01:51 AM

Thanks for the idea, I may have to make one of these!

-- Whether You Think You Can or You Think You Can't, YOU ARE RIGHT!!!

View cabinetmaster's profile


10874 posts in 4170 days

#12 posted 09-15-2009 01:54 AM

nice job on the workcenter. Looks very beneficial when using the DT fixture.

-- Jerry--A man can never have enough tools or clamps

View jockmike2's profile


10635 posts in 4858 days

#13 posted 09-15-2009 04:50 PM

I just ordered the 4212 yesterday, let me know how you like it. It sure was a deal. Also has anyone used the bench cookies. They are a marvel. They are absolutely the best thing anyone has come out with in a long time. I got 2 sets just in case I mess one up. They really work great. You set anything on them and it won’t budge.

-- (You just have to please the man in the Mirror) Mike from Michigan -

View Geedubs's profile


143 posts in 3841 days

#14 posted 09-15-2009 06:28 PM

Mike, so far I like the 4212 but I am like the adventurer at the beginning of the trail…and looking forward to a rewarding journey. I am now looking for projects that will specifically let me hone my dovetail skills. Good luck with your 4212 projects!

-- Todos los dias aprendemos algo nuevo.

View jockmike2's profile


10635 posts in 4858 days

#15 posted 09-15-2009 08:07 PM

Thanks Geedubs, I’m also looking forward to making things with mine. I bought a cheapee at HF for 50 bucks quite a while ago, never could make a decent set of dovetails on it. I tried and tried. Hoping this one is a no brainer, I guess that’s what I need. The ones you made on that box look pretty good to me. mike

-- (You just have to please the man in the Mirror) Mike from Michigan -

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