Hand Tools

Re: baseball and dovetails
Response To:
baseball and dovetails ()

Wiley Horne
Hi Eliot,

It may be your chisel is dull. Either that, or the socket between tails that you’re trying to chop out is really wide. Oak has its issues, but one can certainly chop out dovetail waste, and it’s not a difficult or lengthy job.

Let’s break this down:

1. You’re trying to chop out the socket between two tails, where the pin will go—right?

2. How wide is this pin socket at the baseline, where you’re chopping? If it’s an inch, say, you might want to use a 1/2” or 3/8” chisel.

3. The chisel—will it slice into the edge of an ordinary piece of paper without crumpling the paper? That’s not the definition of ‘sharp’, but it will indicate whether the chisel is usably sharp for your purpose.


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