DIY Woodworking: How to Make Wood Joints (Part 1)
In shop work, it is important to know the kinds of wood joints and to develop the skills in constructing them. Knowledge of the uses of wood joints and their construction enables you to do repair work on worn-out wood joints without hiring the services of a carpenter. It will enable you to construct strong, well-fitted wood joints. It will likewise enable you to produce quality furniture and fixtures. You can produce cabinets with minimum effort, time, and cost, using all these knowledge and skills.
In making wood joints, you need the following tools: backsaw, crosscut saw, marking gauge, chisel, mallet, plane, hammer, C-clamp, vise, and bench hook. Other materials needed are nails, screws, and wood glue. Finishing materials such as sandpaper, shellac, varnish, paint, and thinner may also be needed.
There are several wood joints used in woodworking and furniture-making. The seven most common ones are the butt, cross-lap, dado, miter, mortise, rabbet, and tenon joints. The steps in making each of the first three are provided in this first of a two-part article.
Butt joint - The butt joint is the simplest of the common joints. The end of one piece of wood is simply fastened to a surface or side of another piece of wood. The butt joint is held together with the use of nails, screws, or dowels:
1) Test the squareness of the end of the wood or board that is to be butted against another piece of wood or board. Cut square the same end, if necessary.
2) Mark with pencil the exact location of the joint on the surface of the wood that will meet the square end.
3) Decide the kind of fastener you will use: nails, screws, dowels, or metal fasteners.
4) When using nails for the joint, choose the most suitable nail. Drive the nail into the wood, but stop when the nail points barely go through the first board or wood.
5) Put the pieces to be joined in their correct positions and finish driving the nails in. Use a try square to have a right angle joint. Use a sliding T-bevel for joints with an angle of more than 90 or less than 90 degrees.
Cross-lap joint - The cross-lap joint is the most common among lap joints:
1) Plane the sides of the wood, and then, using a try square, test the squareness of the sides.
2) Arrange the two pieces in their right positions and mark off with a pencil the location of the lap joint.
3) With the use of a try square, check the squareness of the lines across the surface of both pieces.
4) Extend the lines across the edges of both pieces.
5) Mark the depth of the groove or notch with a marking gauge or pencil. The depth or groove should be one-half the thickness of the pieces.
6) Saw the waste side of the lines where the groove or notch is to be made. Do not cut beyond the desired depth of the groove or notch.
7) Make additional cuts in the waste side where the groove is to be made to make chiselling easier.
8) Cut away the waste side, using a wood chisel to make the groove or notch.
9) Try fitting the two pieces together. If the joint is too tight, trim the edges of the pieces carefully, using a sharp wood chisel.
10) Apply wood glue in the groove or notch and assemble the lap joint. Nails or screws may be used to fasten the wood permanently.
Dado joint - Properly made, a dado joint is one of the strongest ways of joining wood to serve your purpose. It is used in drawers, shelves, bookcases, and ladders:
1) Plane and square all sides of the wood or boards to be joined.
2) Assemble the two pieces in their right positions and mark with a pencil the location of the dado joint.
3) With the use of a try square and a pencil, check the squareness of the line with the side of the wood. Extend the lines across both edges.
4) With the use of a marking gauge, mark the depth of the dado.
5) Start making the groove by sawing on the waste side of the lines up to the marked depth of the dado.
6) Using a sharp wood chisel, cut the wood between the saw cuts.
7) Try fitting the two pieces together to check if they fit well. If the joint is too tight, trim the edges of the dado carefully, using a sharp wood chisel.
8) Assemble the joint with glue, nails, or screws.
The steps in making the miter, mortise, rabbet, and tenon joints will be given in the second part of this article.
Tags: Diy , Woodworking , Wood Joints , Wood
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