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Mortise and Tenon, Need Help!!!

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Blog entry by lance posted 08-01-2007 07:30 PM 1664 reads 0 times favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Hi Everyone,

Mortise and Tenon Questions

I’m a neophyte and my first major project, everything is relative, is to make two sets of raised panel bifold doors for our bedroom closets.

The doors will be made out of poplar. Each of the bifold panels will be about 80” by 17.25”. The stiles and rails will be 1” thick and the raised panels will be 3/4” thick.

As I’m about to start putting the tools to the wood I’m becoming concerned with my intension of just using cope and stick joinery.

Question 1: Will cope and stick joinery be strong enough to do the job?

Question 2: Or, should I combine it with mortise and tenon joinery?

Question 3: if the answer to #2 is yes, how do a do it.

I would love to talk to anyone who can help me. Oh! I’m located in New Castle, DE and would be happy to call you on my dime. Thank You!

-- Bob Lance, DE



12 comments so far

View Thos. Angle's profile

Thos. Angle

4445 posts in 3428 days


#1 posted 08-01-2007 09:03 PM

Bob, you don’t say how wide your rails and stiles are. The wider they are the more chance that cope and stick will work. I’ve made several doors that were 24-28 inches wide with cope and stick construction. I would suggest at least a 3 ” stile and rail to hold together. Most of the doors I’ve made are 3/4 as on cabinets but I’ve also made some cupboard doors which were pretty wide for utilitiy cabinets. At only 17 1/4 wide, 3 inch rails and stiles would only leave 11.25 inch wide panels. You also don’t say how many mid-rails you will have. The mid- rails can strenghten your construction quite a bit. Combining cope and stick with mortise and tenon is usually only done on heavy entry and interior doors. Where yours is on a closet and a bi-fold I would have no trouble using cope and stick. By the way don’t forget to leave 1/16 all around the panels for expansion. Get a hold of me if you need.
Tom

-- Thos. Angle, Jordan Valley, Oregon

View lance's profile

lance

170 posts in 3454 days


#2 posted 08-01-2007 10:07 PM

Hi Thos Angle’s,

Thanks for the input. It is greatly appreciated. It sounds like I’m OK with just the cope and stick. But, just to be sure I have provided you the following i info:

The stiles are 79 5/8 h and 4 1/8 w

Going from top to bottom the rails are:

4 ½ h and 9 3/4 w

4 ½ h and 9 3/4 w

8 h and 9 3/4 w

9 h and 9 3/4 w

the panels are:

9 1/8 h and 9 ½ w

22 1/2 h and 9 ½ w

22 1/2 h and 9 ½ w

my router bit is 3/8

Also, should i plane all my wood before cutting it to size or after.

-- Bob Lance, DE

View Karson's profile

Karson

35035 posts in 3866 days


#3 posted 08-01-2007 11:40 PM

Bob If you want to bring the wood down here, I can work through with it. I’ll let you do the work but we can have a training class.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Southern Delaware soon moving to Virginia karsonwm@gmail.com †

View Thos. Angle's profile

Thos. Angle

4445 posts in 3428 days


#4 posted 08-02-2007 01:30 AM

There ya go Bob. Let Karson help you through it the first time. Setting up the cope and stick bits can be a bit tricky the first time. You guys are lucky, Delaware is a small state. If someone offered to help me in Portland, Oregon, it is about 400 miles away. Defintely plane all your wood first and at one time to the same planer setting.

-- Thos. Angle, Jordan Valley, Oregon

View Thos. Angle's profile

Thos. Angle

4445 posts in 3428 days


#5 posted 08-02-2007 01:32 AM

I missed what you asked. I blank my boards before I run them through the planer and then cut to final dimensions.

-- Thos. Angle, Jordan Valley, Oregon

View lance's profile

lance

170 posts in 3454 days


#6 posted 08-02-2007 01:42 AM

Thos thanks for the feedback and Karson thanks, it sounds like a deal.

-- Bob Lance, DE

View Karson's profile

Karson

35035 posts in 3866 days


#7 posted 08-02-2007 01:55 AM

Bob: I’m leaving town on Tuesday and will be gone for 10 days. If we can get together in the next 5 days it would be great. I’ll call you.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Southern Delaware soon moving to Virginia karsonwm@gmail.com †

View Karson's profile

Karson

35035 posts in 3866 days


#8 posted 08-02-2007 03:05 AM

Bob: Here are the pictures from my house.


-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Southern Delaware soon moving to Virginia karsonwm@gmail.com †

View Karson's profile

Karson

35035 posts in 3866 days


#9 posted 08-02-2007 03:20 AM

OK well meet at 10:00 am on Friday and make one door, and we’ll joint all of the wood and you can plane it at home for the other doors. (Try out your new planer.)

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Southern Delaware soon moving to Virginia karsonwm@gmail.com †

View Thos. Angle's profile

Thos. Angle

4445 posts in 3428 days


#10 posted 08-02-2007 03:58 AM

have fun you guys!!

-- Thos. Angle, Jordan Valley, Oregon

View Karson's profile

Karson

35035 posts in 3866 days


#11 posted 08-04-2007 04:24 AM

OK Bob and I got together today to have a training class on Raised Panel construction.

#1 We forgot to take pictures through the process.

#2 He forgot half of his wood at home.

#3 We couldn’t find enough pieces to make 1 full door so we looked through my Popular stash and found a 12” piece that would give him the required 9” piece.

#4 We cut my popular to get it to the correct size. Then we found a way to get it out of his wood. So much for pre-planning.

#5 We cut the longer pieces into 4 3/4 width size (4 pieces) 80” long

#6 We cut 2 3/4” width pieces (4 pieces) 80” long

#7 We cut pieces 12” long at 4 1/2” (8 pieces), 8” (2 pieces) and 9” (2 pieces)

#8 We face jointed the 4 1/2” wide pieces

#9 We thickness planed the stiles and rails pieces to .999 thick. He wanted 1” but we missed it by a 1 thousands

#10 We then did the edge jointing to get one straight edge. Bob running the machinery.

#11 Cutting the raised panel pieces to length.

#12 Cutting the 12” long pieces to 11 3/8”

#13 Cutting the Router profile on the 11 3/8” wide pieces. Some had profile on one edge and some had it on both edges. We had a “T” to tell us which surface to be up and a “V” to point the edge that got cut a profile. One stack had both sides and the other stack has only one edge.

#14 Cutting the profile on the raised panel.

#15 we were so tired and it was 7:00 so we had been at it since 10:00 AM with a lunch break.

So Bob loaded all the pieces in his truck and headed home.

So he’ll get to cut 3 – 8’ pieces and 3 – 9” pieces for the stiles.
He’ll get to cut 5 – 22 1/8” pieces for raised panels and 4 – 9” pieces for raised panels

and plane the same and but the router bit profile on his wood and touch up some of the wood we cut and didn’t cut the raised panel profile deep enough.

A good time was had by all. Had the door open all day and no Air Conditioning (Bummer)

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Southern Delaware soon moving to Virginia karsonwm@gmail.com †

View Bill's profile

Bill

2579 posts in 3627 days


#12 posted 08-04-2007 06:14 PM

A nice learning opportunity for Bob, and a great mentoring one for Karson. I am looking forward to seeing these doors.

-- Bill, Turlock California, http://www.brookswoodworks.com

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