Dovetail Jig Workcenter

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Project by Ken Fitzpatrick posted 03-14-2012 04:03 PM 6259 views 20 times favorited 10 comments Add to Favorites Watch

For those who were waiting, sorry this took so long. Had a slight detour in the middle that required my attention. Also lost a few of the pics that I took while in progress.

This is the Woodsmith Dovetail Jig Workcenter they published several years ago. It was designed specifically for the Porter Cable 4212 which is what I have so it was perfect. It can be easily modified for any other jig from what I can see.

When I finished my Kreg Jig Workcenter a few weeks ago I jumped right into this. After spending an evening in the shop cutting out all the pieces, I received a Shopnotes mag in the mail with an addendum to this Jig. It added a second drawer. Since I had already modified the Kreg Jig, I figured why not. So back out to the shop. All I had to recut was three pieces, i.e. two sides and one back. I was able to use those to build the second drawer with a little waste left over.

It is at the perfect height for me to work dovetails. It is also great storage for the dovetail jig when not in use. Everything fits inside. With the addition of the second drawer it added great space for the small doodads or whatever you want to call them.

For those who havent seen this jig before the two wings that fold down are dual purpose. 1 for a place to clamp to your bench and 2 and landing zone on either side for your router that won’t ding up the bit.

I finished the project with three coats of Waterlox and then rubbed out with steel wool with paste wax. I know, maybe an overkill but I had some that was getting old and might as well protect the project. If you have the plans for the original and want to add a second drawer, just increas the height by 2 1/2” and make the drawer accordingly.

When all is said and done I have to admit that when the jig and attachments are stored inside it is quite heavy. I never would have thought that since I was using 1/2” baltic birch ply. If you have a problem picking things up you may want to reconsider the second drawer. Good luck if you decide to build.


P.S. Oh I forgot to say that I did modify everything to use pocket screws instead of the original rabbits and dadoes it called for. Sorry I’m just a Kreg screw fanatic.

-- • "I have noticed that nothing I have never said ever did me any harm."....... Calvin Coolidge

10 comments so far

View albachippie's profile


773 posts in 3238 days

#1 posted 03-14-2012 04:13 PM

This looks great. I’ve never seen exposed pocket holes look this good before! Great job, thanks for posting

-- Garry fae Bonnie Scotland

View michiganmark's profile


82 posts in 3268 days

#2 posted 03-14-2012 04:50 PM

There’s something to be said about having things at the right height. I’m 6 foot 5 so I built my benches taller. That’s a nice setup

-- Michiganmark, I dream in wood......I'll blame it on my grandfather

View Bertha's profile


13551 posts in 2896 days

#3 posted 03-14-2012 04:52 PM

Very nice! I’ve got my PC jig clamped in a workmate. I have to sit to use it and it’s quite awkward. I might steal this idea. I know there are fancier jigs out there but once my $200 PC jig is dialed in, it does a nice job hammering out drawers. Nice job!

-- My dad and I built a 65 chev pick up.I killed trannys in that thing for some reason-Hog

View Dusty56's profile


11822 posts in 3891 days

#4 posted 03-14-2012 08:37 PM

Hi Ken , your project came out great !
Let me know when you plan on making a dovetailed project as I would like to see it in action. : )
I had a great time at your shop a few weeks back and really enjoyed our talk.
I have been too busy to make anything with the Kreg jig yet , but hopefully soon.
Sorry to read about your set back , but happy that it worked out well in the end and that you’re o’k : )

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View Martyroc's profile


2712 posts in 2509 days

#5 posted 03-14-2012 11:32 PM

Hi Ken, that looks great, what issue was that in? I have the same porter cable dovetail 4212 and I would e to make the same work station

-- Martin ....always count the number of fingers you have before, and after using the saw.

View Ken Fitzpatrick's profile

Ken Fitzpatrick

376 posts in 4227 days

#6 posted 03-15-2012 12:06 AM

Thanks for all the compliments. I’ve been doing things like this as part of my shop re-do to make it easier to do a lot of things. Next up will be Woodsmiths compressor cart. I really like what Woodsmith and Shopnotes puts out. They have some great plans to work from.

Len, will give you a heads up and we can do it together if you want.

Marty, it was in 2009. Made a copy and had it on a clipboard since. It was also a free download from Woodsmith, not sure if it still is. Just ordered the new Woodsmith Library of all 200 mags. If you can’t find it, I will check in there for you when it comes in. Failing all of that, send me a private email with your snail mail address and I’ll mail you my copy. Don’t need it anymore since I built it.


-- • "I have noticed that nothing I have never said ever did me any harm."....... Calvin Coolidge

View Philip "Pip" Storm's profile

Philip "Pip" Storm

130 posts in 2539 days

#7 posted 03-15-2012 07:37 AM

Real nice Ken. I too had just bought the PC jig and the Kreg jig. I’ve been keeping the dovetailer in it’s box, but would love to put it in something like this. Going to have to hunt down these plans. Thanks for sharing.

-- Well, I'll be screwed, glued, and tattooed!

View Philip "Pip" Storm's profile

Philip "Pip" Storm

130 posts in 2539 days

#8 posted 03-15-2012 07:44 AM

Found it! have to sign up for there weekly “tips” email though. No biggy.

-- Well, I'll be screwed, glued, and tattooed!

View helluvawreck's profile


32087 posts in 3070 days

#9 posted 03-15-2012 10:51 AM

This looks like a nice setup that would be easy to use. I’m still using a Keller jig and my vise. I don’t have anything against a Keller jig because it is all I could afford but I would like to have a better setup when I can afford it. You have a nice setup and you did a fine job on it.

helluvawreck aka Charles

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

View Ken Fitzpatrick's profile

Ken Fitzpatrick

376 posts in 4227 days

#10 posted 03-15-2012 06:34 PM

Thanks for finding that Pip, I’m sure anyone wanting to build will appreciate it. One of the problems I had in the beginning was installing the threaded inserts. I asked the question here and from all the answers I received the following link: was the best in my mind. Once again thanks to MAFE for getting me through that part.

Helluvawreck: I used an old craftsman dovetail jig for many years and was very satisfied with it. When I saw the PC and the ability to do through dovetails I looked at it for awhile. What finally got me to bite and retire my old craftsman was the ability to cut sliding dovetails for shelves. It seemed like a straight forward process adding something new to my arsenal. I still haven’t tried that feature but have a project coming up that would benefit from the sliding dovetail. I will try and remember to blog the process.


-- • "I have noticed that nothing I have never said ever did me any harm."....... Calvin Coolidge

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