Hand Tools Archive
Bill Tindall, E.Tn.
On the off chance that someone might need a triangular box the details of laying out the dovetails are described. This one and its mate will flank the drawer in the corner cupboard as secret compartments that will, in place, look like drawer guides.
To me, and wife that helps glue complex assemblies, there is something not intuitive about the dovetails. When learning I made a box of scrap dovetails with every possible orientation of the tail and pin angles wrong in some way or another. Even when assembling we wanted to put parts together backwards. I now label all intersecting pieces to avoid confusion when assembling.
You must become a pins first advocate no matter your upbringing.
In a square box the base lines are off set from the ends by the thickness of the stock. In an angled box the base line is off-set from the tip of the long side by the width of the bevel(1.4 times the stock thickness for a 45 degree box). And for the short side the base line is off set the stock thickness plus the width of the bevel from the tip. For example on a 45 degree box made from 1" thick boards the base lines are 1.4 and 2.4 inches from the long side. I set a marking gauge for each distance to scribe these baselines
Marking the tails from the pins involves holding these parts in registration with the long side of the pin board aligned with the short side of the tail board. If someone figures out a secure and convenient way of accomplishing holding these parts in registration, please post. I made a jig to secure the tail board and a 45 degree block to put under the pin board to help hold it in place.
There is not the equivalent of bashing a snug dovetail together like for a square box. They will either slide together by hand pressure or you are screwed. A band clamp will hold the parts in place as the glue sets. It is helpful to not strive for flauntable dovetails to be shown off to friends and family. My goal was to make a box that held together and in that regard the effort was successful.
transfer of pins to tails with aid of jig