The purpose of this blog is to share my adventure with learning to make hand cut dovetails. I decided that I wanted to make furniture with better joinery, that meant getting over my fear of dovetails. My first dovetail was an epic failure, not only because the gaps were huge but it had no tails, see the pic below.
But I must say the experience is getting better. I have watch lots of video on Youtube, Wood Whisperer (Woodtalkonline.com) and LumberJocks.
I have chosen to cut my dovetails, tails first. I have no particular reason for this. My second dovetail came out much better than the first, the gaps were consistent
The gaps did shrink on the third attempt and I was consistent with the layout line.
I was able to get a much tighter fit on the fourth attempt but I was not where close to my original layout lines.
Two things that really helped were hold down clamp, which I made from HF F style clamp. Worked great and was under ten dollars.
I looked in VERITAS one http://www.leevalley.com/US/wood/page.aspx?p=31149&cat=1,43838,43847&ap=1) but that was a bit pricey. Here are the plans for it http://www.woodworkingtips.com/etips/etip040507ws.html The other thing that help was jointing a small board that I align to the shoulder marking. I use this as a reference for my chisel.
I will try and do at least two dovetails a day for the next week.