types woodworking joints

by Sunia
(Suva, Fiji)

Q: how many types of joints do we have in woodworking


A: As many as you want. Okay, that's a nothing answer, but it's somewhat true. Wood can be cut, bent, glued, turned, carved and otherwise changed in dozens of different ways.

For a look at a few common joints check out this page on joinery.

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soaking for Shaker boxes

by Phil Jackson
(Grapecreek, Illinois)

Q: How does one go about soaking several pieces of wood to make a Shaker box, i.e. what type of wood, what size of wood, how long in water, is water changed, how long to dry, etc?

A: Making Shaker boxes is simple in theory, but takes a while to master. For an overview see making Shaker boxes.

To answer your specific questions:

The type of wood doesn't matter too much although some species split more easily than others. I've had good luck with pine, poplar, cherry, walnut, maple, ash, etc. If you use quartersawn wood it is more stable and less likely to split.

Traditional Shaker boxes are made in numbered sizes, with specific measurements for band size and thickness, but feel free to play with sizes. Thickness depends on the size of the box. 1/16" is good for smaller boxes. I've made hatboxes with wood up to 1/8" thick.

Leave the band in hot water for 20 minutes or until pliable. It should bend easily without splitting. If it feels like it's about to split as you bend it around the form return it to the water and try again later.

Bend the wood while it is still hot from the water, let it dry on the band. Change water between species if the water is discolored. I've also noticed that if I don't dry the tray after use I get mineral specks on the wood next time I use the tray.

Hope this helps. Have fun.
Kate

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Routing a roundover in an angled hole...

by Jay
(Seattle)

Q: I have a woodworking question that I just can't quite figure out. I have drilled a 2" diameter hole at a 45 degree angle through a 2" thick board. I would like to fillet the intersection of the hole and the faces of the board with a round bevel, but I don't think I can use my normal bearing guided 1/4" radius roundover bit because the walls of the hole are at an angle to the face of the board. Is there any easy way to accomplish what I'm after?

Many thanks,

Jay

A: I'd say this is a situation where hand tools are the best bet. You could use a small chisel, bevel down, to make a champher.

Cut from two directions so as not to split along the grain. To keep the champher even scribe a line around the edge of the hole so you can judge how far to cut.

Then once you have a consistent champher you can round that edge with a file or even sandpaper.


Good luck!

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Cutting miters

by Stephanie S
(Toronto, Canada)

Q: I don't seem to be able to cut decent miters on my tablesaw (although my crosscuts are true) and I've realized that it's because the blade when tilted does not quite reach a true angle. Even though I've pushed it over as far as it will go, it still needs another little bit to cut at the correct angle.

Any suggestions? I have a chop saw but don't like to use it for smaller pieces plus it leaves a very rough edge. I'm also not crazy about the idea of taking my saw apart and trying to recalibrate it myself. I realize I'm not leaving many options but any help would be appreciated! Thanks very much,

A: That's a frustrating problem, but you don't have to take the saw apart to fix it. If you look underneath you can see where the saw is bottoming out when you tilt it to 45.

On most saws that will be an adjustable stop. You should be able to back that stop off just a bit to allow the blade to reach a true 45 (and no further).

Good luck.
Kate

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