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Finger Joints: Technical question

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Forum topic by edwood1975 posted 10-07-2015 04:06 PM 613 views 0 times favorited 10 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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edwood1975

492 posts in 804 days


10-07-2015 04:06 PM

I have just recently wanted to expand my joinery techniques and I’m working on finger joints..

I made a jig for my router table with a fence and basically a 1/2” hardwood key to reference each slot, but my question is since I am using 3/4” stock I need to cut a 1/2” x 3/4” inch slot : I am wondering what the best and fastest method is

1. Should I make several passes on each finger until the desired height is reached ( if I choose this method it’s hard to align the bit while the stock is flush with the router table, this making it difficult to achieve consistent fingers and slots.
2 or should I work on each finger of the joining face and then raise the router straight bit

If there is another method using my jig I’m all ears….

Thanks guys

-- Ed


10 replies so far

View Grandpa's profile

Grandpa

3256 posts in 2136 days


#1 posted 10-07-2015 06:50 PM

I assume you are calling box joint corners finger joints. Many people use them interchangeably. I cut those for my beehives on the table saw because they are easy to make. I use the same method with a board screwed to the miter gauge and a small block attached to the board the reference. There are some fancy jigs out there on the internet but I haven’t built one yet. If you have a dove tail jig for your router you can use a box joint bit and do it there.

View pintodeluxe's profile

pintodeluxe

4853 posts in 2274 days


#2 posted 10-07-2015 06:55 PM

Make the cuts in one pass, otherwise you will end up with sloppy joints.
I use a tablesaw jig, because I don’t like making 3/4” deep cuts on the router table in one pass.
I have a Leigh box joint template that I have been meaning to try. Most of my projects lately have called for dovetails, but box joints are fun too.

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

View HokieKen's profile

HokieKen

1738 posts in 599 days


#3 posted 10-07-2015 06:57 PM

Depending on your router/bit and the wood, you may be able to take it in 1 swipe. 3/4” isn’t so thick that the bit won’t be able to eject the shavings.

-- Kenny, SW VA, Go Hokies!!!

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Fred Hargis

3928 posts in 1954 days


#4 posted 10-07-2015 08:14 PM

What they said: single pass. Just watch your feed rate.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

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frosty50

46 posts in 1808 days


#5 posted 10-07-2015 08:56 PM

I have a dedicated sled to use on my router table for 1/4”, 3/8”, and 1/2” finger joints. I use a down cut spiral bit and they only adjust due to the dedicate jigs is the height of the bit. I just made 8 drawer boxes, 4 1/2” in height using the 1/2” jig and routed all of the fingers in less than 45 minutes. Each jig took approximately 45 minutes to make and work like a champ. I am paying around with the idea of making a jig set up for 1” box joints be have not finalized it yet as I am not happy. Firm believer in jigs to speed up production time.

-- frosty

View Kazooman's profile

Kazooman

624 posts in 1413 days


#6 posted 10-07-2015 09:55 PM



I have a dedicated sled to use on my router table for 1/4”, 3/8”, and 1/2” finger joints. I use a down cut spiral bit and they only adjust due to the dedicate jigs is the height of the bit. I just made 8 drawer boxes, 4 1/2” in height using the 1/2” jig and routed all of the fingers in less than 45 minutes. Each jig took approximately 45 minutes to make and work like a champ. I am paying around with the idea of making a jig set up for 1” box joints be have not finalized it yet as I am not happy. Firm believer in jigs to speed up production time.

- frosty50

Just curious. When you say you use a down cut spiral bit I assume that is to clear the chips on the upper surface of th jig and not down into the router motor. Is that correct? The only spiral bits I own are up cut and they would pull the chips down into the motor on the router table. I may need to invest in some down cut bits for this purpose.

View Luthierman's profile

Luthierman

157 posts in 548 days


#7 posted 10-07-2015 10:42 PM

I bought this and never looked back. It has infinite adjustability for everything. Just saying. The only jig you will ever need to make box joints. I understand it doesn’t exactly answer your question, I just wanted to make the suggestion if you got to where you really like box joints. This simplifies it so much.

i

-- Jesse, West Lafayette, Indiana

View gfadvm's profile

gfadvm

14940 posts in 2151 days


#8 posted 10-08-2015 12:13 AM

I would recommend that you make your box joints on the tablesaw: much faster and less tearout. I started out making them on the router table so I know where you are. I will never go back to the router table for box joints.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View edwood1975's profile

edwood1975

492 posts in 804 days


#9 posted 10-08-2015 12:22 AM



I would recommend that you make your box joints on the tablesaw: much faster and less tearout. I started out making them on the router table so I know where you are. I will never go back to the router table for box joints.

- gfadvm

I would love to but my tablesaw is a piece of crap I’m trying to get a new one I have my eye in a ridged contractor style but I can’t afford one yet and to be honest all of my work is suffering sorry for rambling but I 100% agree with you

-- Ed

View gfadvm's profile

gfadvm

14940 posts in 2151 days


#10 posted 10-08-2015 12:35 AM

I cut a lot of perfect box joints on a Ryobi contractor saw with a Harbor Freight dado set when I first started out and I would go back to the old Ryobi before I went back to the router table. I now use the Freud Box Cutter blades. They aren’t cheap but well worth the $.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

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