Mortise and Tenons on Curved Pieces

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Blog entry by socrbent posted 12-01-2013 04:25 PM 3298 reads 0 times favorited 0 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Maybe this blog can help some newbies. Experienced woodworkers and those with good training (not me) know that you should cut the mortises and tenons while the stock is still rectangular. Since I didn’t remember this until after cutting some parts for a toy baby cradle to their curved shape, I had to find solutions to problems encountered when cutting some mortises and tenons.

The first problem surfaced as I was cutting the tenons on an upper rails for the head board and foot boards. I was using a dado set (pictures were taken later after removing dado blades) in a table saw and had successfully cut the tenons on some straight pieces and the first cut on the top rail.

But I soon saw that cutting the side of the rail with the curve against the miter gauge was going to be unstable and risky.

After tracing the rails curve shape on the edge of a scrap board, I cut the curve out of the scarp over cutting in the curved area so the rail would rest on the straight ends. This allowed me to cut the tenons in a stable and accurate manner.

The second problem came when I attempted to cut the mortises near the ends of the rockers. The jig used was to create this jig to hold the rocker securely and level. The pictures were taken later and don’t make the rocker look level. It was level when I cut the mortises. Note the cap piece on the left end of the jig to prevent the rockers from moving while under the pressure of the mortising machine.

-- socrbent Ohio

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