Hand Tools Archive

An unusual joint *PIC*

Lars Parrington
I've been working on a console table that employs tusk tenons on the ends of stretcher:

I wanted a similarly knock-down-able joint between the legs and tabletop. What I came up with is not something I've ever seen elsewhere, but I think it's a fairly elegant solution. It should be reasonably robust, it is easy to disassemble, and it is not difficult to make.

Here is a photo of it, ready for assembly:

And here is a photo of it assembled:

For each leg assembly (looks like 2 legs, but is one piece), there are two pairs of cleats glued to the undeside of the table top, making 4 pairs total. The wedges that lock it together are tapered in two directions. One direction forces the joint tight, the other direction just keeps the wedge pressed against the underside of the table top.

Possibly the hardest part to make is the angled cutouts in the legs. But this turns out to be quite easy if you make the cleats first, and then use them as a jig, like so:

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