Repeatable holes

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Forum topic by daddywoofdawg posted 06-11-2015 04:12 AM 687 views 0 times favorited 5 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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1006 posts in 994 days

06-11-2015 04:12 AM

Topic tags/keywords: joining drill press

I’m making a series of adirondack chairs,So that is alot of slats to drill,What I’d like to do is set up a “jig” to place the end of each slat in drill, turn around drill,rinse and repeat on the next slat,without having to measure each and every hole.Anyone have a link,how-to,drawing on a jig to do that.or even google search terms.

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#1 posted 06-11-2015 04:34 AM

Two common ways to do this.

If you’re talking about drilling the slat and base at the same time, I’ve done this sort of thing as follows:

1) Make a jig with a peg sticking out of it and insert that into masonite pegboard such that each movement of the peg to the next hole (which might not be the immediately adjacent one, but you get the idea) puts your jig in the right place for the position of the next slat. Since both the holes in the pegboard are perfectly spaced and the slats are perfectly spaced, you can figure out the distance beyond the peg for the hole to go. Then you drill through that wooden piece, which goes through the masonite too. The jig moves across the entire piece and then you’re done. You can screw an angle piece to the masonite so it rests up against the edge of the piece being drilled. So you drill through the slat and the base at the same time, screw in the slat, and then add the next one. (If you don’t screw them in place the pieces tend to move.)

2) Another way is to make a piece of wood with a peg that fits into the hole you just drilled, such that it has a hole in the position for the NEXT hole. So you’re basically incrementally moving across the piece, using the previous hole as the base position plus the offset from the jig. All holes will be spaced the same distance apart. So you only need to measure the first position and then drill, put the slat in place, drill through it into the base, move, repeat until done. The slats should all be drilled in the same place, so they theoretically should be interchangeable and you don’t need to screw them in place as you go. When done just screw each slat in place.

The peg can made from anything, it just has to fit into the hole you drilled. I’ve done this with dowels that I sanded down so they’d be a nice fit. Not for chairs, but for similarly regularly spaced things.

You can put a lip on the jig so it rests against the edge of the piece being drilled, for stability and accuracy.

I hope that made sense.

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#2 posted 06-11-2015 04:46 AM

Daddywoofdawg, I (sic) your “repetable”.

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#3 posted 06-11-2015 05:08 AM

I’ve done similar, but not for an adirondack… piece of hardboard with a few locator blocks glued/screwed in the right place. Drill the two holes where you want them, one for each orientation (top/bottom). Don’t have any plans for it though (nor any pictures unfortunately).


-- Brad in FL - To be old and wise, you must first be young and stupid

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#4 posted 06-11-2015 12:58 PM

Sorry,repeatable.late night.
I need to drill only one hole in each slat on each end,on the face.So a peg and move won’t work. I’m thinking maybe a slide it in a slot/U shaped frame,when seated in the U the drill will hit the same spot each time.would that work?Not looking for machine tolerances.just hit the the edge/frame I’m screwing the slat into,and visually looks straight.

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#5 posted 06-12-2015 12:45 AM

Yes, if your U shaped jig rests up against the edge of the piece opposite to the one adjacent to the previously installed piece.

So if you have “A B C D”, where A B C are previously installed slats, and D is loose to be drilled and screwed, then it rests up against the right edge of D and overlaps it so that the pilot hole is right in the center of D on both sides. That way it’s always positioned relative to a slat. You’ll need to have it rest up against the slats so you don’t get a depth wandering issue.

The tolerance on that ought to be as good as the tolerances on the width of your slats.

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