Krenov Style Smart Sawhorses

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Project by gerrym526 posted 12-10-2009 10:49 PM 6910 views 5 times favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch

It’s been several months since I’ve been in the shop (don’t like working in a basement shop with no windows on a beautiful summer day). Needed a quick project to get warmed for the next major one-low entertainment center (in design currently).
I liked the idea of having some nice looking sawhorses for the shop, so built a pair from the Dec 09 article in Fine Woodworking “Smart Sawhorses”, using some oak scraps that were in the shop. The joinery gave me an opportunity to use my hollow chisel mortiser again, since the last time it was used was for the cherry/maple blanket chest. (Delta benchtop model).
Overall, was satisfied with how they came out, except for the wedged through mortise and tenon joint. I like using this joinery, but was disappointed on the rough edges of the bottom side of the through mortise caused by the hollow chisel machine. I sharpened the hollow chisels before using, and used a backer board to prevent blowout on the bottom side, but would have liked them to have come out with much cleaner edges.
Anyone have a solution for this issue?
It appears to me that the hollow chisel motiser works great for hidden mortises, but I wonder if the next time this joint is used it would come out better with a plunge router for mortising, and rounded tenons?
Opinions on this are welcomed.
I also got some good suggestions for avioiding the problem of the wedges breaking off when being inserted into the kerfs of the tenon-thanks guys.
Will probably finsh them with a quick coat or two of urethane to keep wood glue from sticking when I’m using them for assemblies.

-- Gerry

6 comments so far

View Dudley's profile


742 posts in 3254 days

#1 posted 12-10-2009 11:20 PM

I like um. BZ

-- Dudley Young USN Retired. Sebastian, Fl.

View woodenships's profile


33 posts in 3163 days

#2 posted 12-11-2009 01:28 AM

Them look good ..I have the wood and the same article….over Christmas break I hope to get them done
Could you have cleaned the edges with a file?

D man

-- "Safety is habit you start and always keep!"

View cabinetmaster's profile


10874 posts in 3552 days

#3 posted 12-11-2009 01:34 AM

Hmmmmmmmm….......................... them look very nice. You just gave me another idea.

-- Jerry--A man can never have enough tools or clamps

View gerrym526's profile


274 posts in 3802 days

#4 posted 12-11-2009 02:31 AM

D Man,
I had thought about cleaning the edges with a chisel, but had cut the mortises all the way to my marking guage reference lines. And by cleaning them up, would have been left with big gaps around the tenon (pretty sure that would have been the case).
I’m going to try an experiment with a test piece, cutting the mortise from both sides with the hollow chisel mortiser to see if the edges come out cleaner.
Thanks to the rest of you as well for your nice comments.

-- Gerry

View mfike's profile


100 posts in 3660 days

#5 posted 12-12-2009 03:14 AM

What I do for through tenons is to cut a scrap tenon a little bigger than your hollow chisel and use that to guage how much material to remove. So if you’re using a 1/4” bit/chisel you might end up with 5/16” mortise after you clean it up with a chisel. Then you can cut your actual tenon for tight fit. Just my .02. Oh and I am planning to build these too, so thanks for working out all the bugs for me. Good Job.

View Chris Moellering's profile

Chris Moellering

227 posts in 2642 days

#6 posted 02-25-2011 07:14 PM

Nice, just what I was looking for.

-- Grace & peace, Chris+

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