Half-Blind Dovetail Jig

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Review by CanadaJeff posted 05-25-2009 02:53 AM 11494 views 0 times favorited 5 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Half-Blind Dovetail Jig No-picture-s No-picture-s Click the pictures to enlarge them

I found this at Busy Bee Tools in Canada, during one of their sales. Normally it retails for $99 CND and at that price I would rather hold out and save a bit more for something of a better name, but for their sale price of $52 CND, I figured it was at a price point that was worth the risk.

Overall, the jig is not too bad, it works pretty standard as similarly designed jigs, like Rockler’s, and has a removable aluminum plate that can be changed out for various other sizes.

Clearly the pros with this jig are the price and generally the material it was made with. Overall its a heavy jig, but I think that works well for something like dovetails. The downsides to this product, are the plastic alignments that look like they will break soon (and even said in the instruction manual “do not over tighten or you could break the plastic”. The other downfall is clearly the manual itself, not very informative at all. In fact I actually found (and posted earlier) on lumber jocks another similar dovetail manual that explains in detail how to set it up.

I haven’t had much experience working with dovetail jigs so take this with a grain of salt, but I am actually pretty happy with it. It does take a bit of time to setup and usually an adjustment or two, but once its set, it works as it should. As a beginner woodworker, I may eventually grow tired of this one, but for right now I think it was 52 bucks well spent.

View CanadaJeff's profile


207 posts in 4380 days

5 comments so far

View AaronK's profile


1511 posts in 4235 days

#1 posted 05-25-2009 03:16 AM

thanks for the review. 3-star reviews are sometimes the most helpful.

Can anyone who’s used this compare this to similarly priced jigs like the Rockler, MLCS, or other?

View Chris Wright's profile

Chris Wright

541 posts in 4252 days

#2 posted 05-27-2009 05:04 PM

Thanks for the review. There’s a great article in the latest issue of Woodcraft Magazine (June/July 09) with lots of tips on how to get consistent quality joints from a dovetail jig.

-- "At its best, life is completely unpredictable." - Christopher Walken

View wiredheart's profile


6 posts in 4139 days

#3 posted 05-29-2009 12:27 AM

I have a similar unit, except I honestly can’t remember where I bought it. I do recall that I only paid $40.00 for it figuring 1 day I would try to use it and with the cheap price I couldn’t pass it up. The time has finally come and I’m having a hell of a time trying to use it, so I’m just making standard table saw cuts for now. I have a problem with my hands in that I have psoriasis and it causes cracking and splitting no matter what I wear or use on my hands. I will p/u June/July 09 Woodcraft magazine now to look for the article on how to get consistent quality joints from a dovetail jig.

Just remember that you know you have bad day going when people are standing around looking down at you while you are flat on your back and saying how good you look.

-- wiredheart

View Steve's profile


11 posts in 4055 days

#4 posted 05-29-2009 09:00 PM

My first one was a Craftsman and I cut perfect blind dovetails with it first try. I’ve since (Christmas 2008) moved up to the Rockler, which looks similar, but cost much more. It’s still in the box, so I can’t comment on how it works.

The point is that it will probably work great provided you measure 4 times, cut 3 times. Remember, scraps are your friends with a new tool – especially when dealing with dovetails! :)

-- Ahhh...I love the smell of sawdust in the morning...

View Dustmite97's profile


439 posts in 3991 days

#5 posted 12-31-2009 10:17 PM

I have this same jig and am quite happy with it. You’re right, it is very difficult to set up but once it is set up correctly it makes very nice joints.

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