Jesada's Glue Joint Cutter
by Bob McGovern


Here's some impressions of Jesada's glue joint bit.

The piece is a heavy, impressive lump of metal. In thinner stock, you may need alot of clearance in your table, and a dedicated fence helps because you need to bury the bit pretty deep inside it. Scrap stock helps set the height; centered on the edge, the cutter mills symmetrical grooves alternating face up/face down.

Fence location takes some noodling. You can start with shallow cuts and deepen them; too deep, though, and you'll get snipe at the end of the cut. Splintery woods like red oak might best be done in several passes, but I had no problem going full depth on 4/4 cherry. The resulting cut was smooth -- an excellent surface for gluing.

The joint gives lots of glue surface and indexes the edges, so you can clamp up without having slippery planks sliding all over. A toothbrush will help spread the glue into those little slots; I used Poly glue so I had time to mess with levelling.

My bit was a little tight & the joint would not come completely closed. No sweat -- just raise (or lower) the bit the teeeeeeniest degree & pass all joints over it again. Serious sharpening will change the geometry & the joint would get loose.
The glue joint bit is expensive for a dedicated tool; unless you do alot of panel glue-ups, a slot cutter t&g setup is more versatile. But as part of Jesada's kitchen set, the bit is a very good buy.

By the way, each glue joint eats up 1/8" of total panel width. If you're shaving things close, it helps to remember that. Guess how I know.


Top


 

© 2003 by Ellis Walentine by special arrangement with Wayne Miller of Badger Pond. All rights reserved.
No parts of this article may be reproduced in any form or by any means
without the written permission of the publisher.