Posts Tagged ‘joinery’

Chamfering a Dowel

In woodworking, a chamfer is basically a bevel. The term can also be used to describe removing a sharp edge, or trimming down rounded surfaces to make flat surfaces. For instance, you might “chamfer” four sides of a wooden dowel to turn it into a square peg. The term chamfer is also used to describe removing a sharp corner, or 90 degree angle. For instance, in many countries, where the sidewalks meet at a 90 degree point, the corner is often chamfered off as to allow cars to turn more easily, avoiding tire damage and unnecessary braking. Here we will discuss chamfering as it pertains to woodworking projects, specifically, projects that make use of wooden dowels.

Chamfering is very useful in dowel joinery. A wooden dowel with a chamfered edge is easier to insert into tight holes. This ease can actually allow you to create a tighter fit and a stronger finish, because the chamfered edge makes a convenient glue space at the end of the dowel. Less of the wood glue is squeezed out when the dowel peg is inserted and the glue makes contact with more surface area of the wooden dowel. Professional furniture builders almost always take the time to chamfer the ends of their dowel pegs before they attempt a dowel joint.

You can also chamfer a dowel to create trim molding. This kind of molding is generally used to define a space, cover up a gap, protect a corner from damage, or transition the eyes between surfaces. Quarter rounds and rope moldings are great examples of chamfered dowels that are being used as trim. Larger wooden dowels, usually a hardwood dowel, can be chamfered to create crown and other types of molding.

Often times, people use the term “chamfer” to refer to any joint that doesn’t meet at exactly 90 degrees. Take baseboards, chair rails, and crown molding, for example. They meet at 45 degrees in and around every corner. The ends of the boards must be chamfered to match and create an almost invisible joint. Proper chamfering will create the illusion of one continuous board, even when multiple boards are used.

Besides trimming and making joints stronger, chamfering the ends of your wood dowel and tenon ends is used to avoid the dreaded “squeeze out” of glue that can ruin the surface you are trying to finish. There’s nothing worse than joining two pieces together and having the glue escape. When that happens, it makes a spot where stains and varnishes cannot penetrate, so the finished product looks discolored. Chamfering creates extra space for glue to flow so that it doesn’t escape on to a surface where you don’t want it.

About the Author: Dave Murphy is the founder and president of Good Wood, Inc., which makes a high quality wood dowel and the best hardwood dowel on the market. They also create wooden balls, wood knobs, wooden toy parts, custom wood parts, and more. They offer safe wood finishing, wood turning and can import from off-shore when necessary. Visit http://www.goodwoodinc.com for all of your wood product needs.

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,
Posted in Uncategorized | No Comments »

Safety in Woodworking

Woodworking can be a very enjoyable pastime, but it does have some risks. Risks can come from the equipment, the wood, the environment, or just about anywhere. It is important to put safety first when working on a project, no matter how simple it may seem to you. Here is a list of common injuries. Review them carefully so that you are aware of what could happen while you’re working with wood.

1) Cuts are probably the most common woodworking injury. Severe cuts and lacerations can occur if you slip or carelessly use a chisel, saw, router or blade. Use protective gloves and take your time to avoid serious injury.

2) Equipment malfunction can cause saw blades and drill or router bits to fragment and shoot off in a lot of different directions. Wear “work” clothes made of thick canvas and protective eye gear to minimize your injuries that could occur if this happens to you.

3) Eye injuries are very common. Splintering wood, sawdust, metal fragments and even dangerous fumes can be in the air while you’re working with wood. It is a good idea to always wear safety goggles while tackling a woodworking project.

4) Toxic substances can be found in finishes and different types of treated wood. These substances can be inhaled. It is important to know exactly what you are working with before you begin. A good respirator can be a very wise investment. Even if you’re working outdoors a respirator should be worn. Inhaling the wrong things can do permanent damage or even cause death.

5) Beware of unknown allergens. Sometimes woodworkers don’t know that they are allergic to a type of wood until they cut it, handle it, or accidentally inhale some of the dust. This can cause a serious allergic reaction that may require immediate medical attention. Always keep a phone handy just in case you need to dial 911.

6) Electrocution should be a concern if you’re working with power tools. Always be careful when you plug in power tools. Make sure that you have plenty of slack in the cord. Make sure that the cord does not have any frayed edges or exposed wire. If you’re questioning the safety of a power tool, it’s probably best to replace it.

7) Fire hazards are often all around a woodworking shop. Sawdust and chalk can cause a spark to shoot out of an outlet. Keep outlet covers on outlets that are not in use. Oily rags, solvents, and finishing chemicals can ignite if not disposed of and stored properly.

Woodworking can be a wonderful, lifelong, hobby. Learning different techniques for joinery, like using dowels or dowel rods and mortise and tenon joint basics can help you to create a wide variety of items. Putting safety first is important as you embark on your woodworking journey.

About the Author: Dave Murphy is the founder and president of Good Wood, Inc. which manufactures wood products in Ohio. Good Wood, Inc. makes dowels and dowel rods, wooden balls, wood knobs, wooden toy parts, custom wood parts, and more. They offer safe wood finishing, wood turning and can import dowels from off-shore suppliers when necessary. Visit http://www.goodwoodinc.com for your wood product needs.

Tags: , , , , , , ,
Posted in Uncategorized | No Comments »

Mortise and Tenon Joints

Mortise and tenon is one of the oldest and simplest joints around, but it is also one of the strongest. When tested against other joints by Wood Magazine, the mortise and tenon joint took two to three times more force to break than any other joint that they tested. It also took the award for hardest joint to pull apart. Over 4,700 pounds of force were used to pull this joint apart, and it still didn’t budge before the wood broke.

The mortise is the female “receiving” end of the joint. A hole is cut partway or all the way through a piece of wood. The tenon is formed on the other piece of wood. The tenon is the male end. It is a tab cut into a piece of wood that fits perfectly into the mortise. This joint joins two pieces of wood at ninety degrees, like a key in a lock.

An open mortise is the same as a bridle joint. A tenon is cut into the end of a board, and a mortise into the other, just like a regular mortise and tenon joint. However, the tenon is cut to be the full length of the end of the board. So, it is more like the tongue of a tongue and groove joint, only cut on two sides. The mortise is more of a slot than a hole. You can use a router or a circular saw to cut the slot and tenon of the open mortise joint.

A stub mortise is a mortise that doesn’t go all the way through the board. It is a hole of a specific depth and the tenon is cut to fit into the hole. A through mortise is one that has a mortise that completely goes through the board.

One of the oldest types of mortise and tenon joints is the dovetail joint. This joint is known for its tensile strength and is often used in furniture that will be put through a lot of pushing and pulling. You will most likely see a dovetail joint if you open your dresser drawer and take a look where the front connects with the sides. For this joint, pins are cut in the end of one board. Then tails, or slots, are cut in the end of the other board. The pins and tails are usually cut into a trapezoid shape and glued. No other hardware is needed once the dovetails are glued into place.

There are many types of joints that you can use depending on what you are building. Mortise and tenon joints are great for projects that will need to endure a lot of wear and tear. You can also use dowels for joining boards together. A dowel rod creates a strong joint and can sometimes be easier than some mortise and tenon joints. Consult a woodworking professional or follow professional advice when choosing the best kind of joints for your woodworking projects.

About the Author: Dave Murphy is the founder and president of Good Wood, Inc. which manufactures wood products in Ohio. Good Wood, Inc. makes dowels and dowel rods, wooden balls, wood knobs, wooden toy parts, custom wood parts, and more. They offer safe wood finishing, wood turning and can import dowels from off-shore suppliers when necessary. Visit http://www.goodwoodinc.com for your wood product needs.

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,
Posted in Uncategorized | No Comments »