Academy Notes and Tips
the Shopsmith Woodworking Academy
For many beginning woodworkers, joinery is a mystery - and getting a good, close-fitting joint is another. But...like many things, this is a mystery that can easily be solved through practice. And practicing doesn't have to be tedious...it can also be fun....and here's a project that proves it.
Consisting of nine different, yet common woodworking joints, this unique puzzle can be made on the MARK V using various modes and accessories. As you work, remember to always follow the two most helpful of all woodworking tips:
1: Prepare the stock. Use 3/4" x 2" stock for this project and prepare an extra two feet of it to use for making test cuts. Cut all of your pieces to their correct lengths. Use a precision square to mark off all 90-degree joints and a miter square for all 45-degree angled joints.
2: Cut the miters on A1, A2 & C2. Set your MARK V's Miter Gauge at 45-degrees and make test cuts on two pieces of scrap. Put the pieces together and check them with a precision square to be certain they form a 90-degree angle.
3: Form the half-lap joints on C1, C2, D1, E1, E2, G1, G2 and H2. To determine your sawblade height, pass a piece of your test stock over the blade, then flip the stock over and make a second pass (See Fig. 1). This second pass should cut off only the waste stock and go no deeper. Adjust your depth-of-cut and try again, if necessary.
4: Cut the mortises (B1, F2, H1) with your Mortising Attachment and a 3/8" Mortising Bit & Chisel Set.
Make sure your Mortising Chisel is sharp and use a piece of scrap stock between the fence and the stock so the Quill won't interfere with the Mortising Hold-Down (See Fig. 2).
6: Form the tenons on B2, F1 and J1, using your Tenoning Jig...or by laying your boards flat on your worktable surface and making multiple passes over a Dado Blade.