Messages Archive

Re: drawer lube and a dovetail editorial

Bill Tindall, E.Tn.
I thought I made it obvious.

There are two polar views to *publically* discussing dovetails. Look how skilled I am at making flauntable dovetails is one extreme. The other is, this is a useful joint I am going to encourage you to incorporate into your work. My public discussions tend in the direction of encouraging beginners to use the joint. What one does privately in their shop for their satisfaction is not part of this discussion.

The amature woodworking community has become so focused on dovetail quality as a measure of a woodworker's worth that beginners are reluctant to use hand cut dovetails. I would be delighted to never hear mention of them. The result might have been that Barry and others would have bought a dovetail saw instead of a jig.

When I taught dovetail classes everyone was fretting over gaps and overcuts when in fact any of the joints would have held a drawer together. There is a good chance that few that took the classes ever used dovetails for fear of not measuring up to the dovetail perfectionists that provide our club programs and videos.

To that end I strive to illustrate functional dovetails, preferably made by "antique woodworkers" in the hope that beginners will say, "I can do that", and then be able to take advantage of this handy joint.

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