Simple jigs for dovetails

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Forum topic by ThomasChippendale posted 11-09-2015 01:31 PM 1391 views 3 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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244 posts in 2220 days

11-09-2015 01:31 PM

Topic tags/keywords: jig joining traditional

I have 8 drawers to build for the basement renovations and decided to build jigs to make traditional looking dovetails. The jigs are simpler than what I saw before and use the table saw sled so I taught I share the experience. It worked out very well and I have 6 out of 8 done this week-end, including the jigs.

Since I reversed the sled, I added a blade guard to the back so the saw blade would not stick out if I happened to push the sled too far.

Setting blade height to cut the tails:

View from above:

Clean-up inside the pins is done on the band saw with a narrow blade and guide.

The pins Jig:

-- PJ

4 replies so far

View BubbaIBA's profile


545 posts in 3664 days

#1 posted 11-12-2015 01:47 PM

I’m sure it works well but…..There’s that damn but that keeps showing up. Eight drawers is only 32 sets of dovetails if you dovetail all four corners of each drawer, only 16 if you use a different joint for the rear panels. I’ll bet with nothing but a backsaw, pencil, dovetail marker (not needed but quicker), and a marking gauge I could have all the joints cut in less time. Of course as with all things wood….YMMV.

View Robert's profile


4794 posts in 2769 days

#2 posted 11-12-2015 03:11 PM

If you can get one of your rip blades reground to 8 or 10 degrees the base of the tails will be flat.
Of course you have to flip the board around to to the other side.

Just thought I’d throw that in.
Nice job.

-- Everything is a prototype thats why its one of a kind!!

View ThomasChippendale's profile


244 posts in 2220 days

#3 posted 11-12-2015 04:09 PM

I taught of having custom angle ground blades but with a little paring and removing the waste with a well tensionned sharp band saw blade, the joint if perfect for drawers. Once the jigs were made, it took about an hour to do all tails and a little more for the pins since they require small adjustment. All drawers are assembled now and they went together square and fit.

-- PJ

View BurlyBob's profile


9414 posts in 3553 days

#4 posted 11-12-2015 04:16 PM

I love your creative idea for those dovetails. I did mine with a Leigh Dovetail jig. It took me quite a while to get the whole process down close to right.

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