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The Width of a Tenon

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Forum topic by bruc101 posted 01-11-2010 04:55 AM 2100 views 0 times favorited 5 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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bruc101

1077 posts in 3007 days


01-11-2010 04:55 AM

Last night in our guild meeting a question was asked by someone about the max width a tenon should be.
He through out a 4 1/2” board width x 3/4” long tenon. I was amazed at all the answers and suggestions that came out of it. I would like to get your opinions on this.

-- Bruce Free Plans http://plans.sawmillvalley.org


5 replies so far

View bill1352's profile

bill1352

130 posts in 2587 days


#1 posted 01-11-2010 05:00 AM

personally for a 4 1/2 wide board that is 3/4 thick i’d want a 2 1/2 long tenion thats 3/8ths thick. bigger the better.

-- Keep Your Stick On The Ice

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27251 posts in 3287 days


#2 posted 01-11-2010 03:00 PM

With M&T joinery the strongest joint is produced by using a tenon that is 1/3 the width and length of the board. For a 4 1/2” board that is 3/4” wide this would yield a tenon that is 1/4” in width and 1 1/2” in length.

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

View stefang's profile

stefang

15512 posts in 2800 days


#3 posted 01-11-2010 07:29 PM

I think Scott pretty well nailed it. However there are lots of exceptions/compromises when design is the overruling factor. Also, strength isn’t only a mortise size issue. The amount of glue service also has something to do with it. Here I’m thinking of double tenons and probably other variations as well. It is an interesting subject, so it would be interesting to hear more discussion about it.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View TheDane's profile

TheDane

4997 posts in 3128 days


#4 posted 01-11-2010 08:59 PM

I go with Scott on this … a 3/8” tenon in a 3/4” board means mortise walls that are only 3/16” thick.

-- Gerry -- "I don't plan to ever really grow up ... I'm just going to learn how to act in public!"

View bruc101's profile

bruc101

1077 posts in 3007 days


#5 posted 01-11-2010 11:04 PM

Interesting answers guys. I also forgot to mention the 4 1/2” board would be going into a 3/4” x 2 ” face frame.

-- Bruce Free Plans http://plans.sawmillvalley.org

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