So the other day I got a wild hair to try hand cut dovetails. Up until now I have always machine cut ally my dovetails. Typically, my thought is, if there is a tool/machine that will let me do something more quickly and accurately, why wouldn’t I use it. However, now I’m fully convinced that with a little practice, hand cut dovetails could be easier and quicker than spending all the time required to set up, test, check the fit, tweak, and re-test a jig setup before being able to cut the project. Also, right now I don’t have a router with dust collection capabilities and free hand routing always seems to create the most dust in the shop.
I’ve decided that I’m going to try and commit myself to doing a practice dovetail joint every day or so and documenting the process and hopefully the improvement as I go. Here are my attempts from my first three days.
Day 1: Beginners luck! This doesn’t seem so hard. Seriously I was really happy with this result as my first attempt ever. My base line was not as crisp as I hoped but not a bad fit.
Day 2: Not so good today. I think I cut my pin too over sized and had to do a lot of chisel work to fit and I think I got them off that way.
Day 3: This is the best one yet!
-- Aaron in TN -http://www.amwellsfurniture.com