Hand Tools Archive

Do you push or pound waste removal

Bill Tindall, E.Tn.
Waste removal to a scribe line is a common operation building furniture. It is used in both dovetails and M&T joinery, common to most pieces. I, and many others, cut the waste out as much as we safely can with a saw and then chisel to the scribe line. This discussion relates to the removal of that small, 1/16" or less, waste at the scribe line.

A common operation is to set the chisel in the scribe line and tap the chisel with the pounding(tapping) device of choice. Personally I like a soft rubber mallet. Removal proceeds quickly as it is quick to guide the chisel along the scribe line and tap, tap, tap.

An alternate is to saw close enough to the scribe line that a single thrusting paring cut can be used to remove this waste. It was this approach I recently tried while preparing some bridle joints in ash. I discovered some advantages and disadvantages for each approach without reaching a conclusion on what is "best".

What do you all do?

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