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Pocket hole joinery

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Forum topic by Gerry1942 posted 02-20-2016 08:53 AM 1492 views 0 times favorited 19 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Gerry1942

21 posts in 293 days


02-20-2016 08:53 AM

I use a Kreg jig for all sorts of things. However when it comes to making drawers out of 1/2 ” plywood or resawing lumber I jus cannot seem to get good solid joints. I follow the instruction Any suggestions ?


19 replies so far

View rwe2156's profile

rwe2156

2193 posts in 945 days


#1 posted 02-20-2016 11:55 AM

You have to be careful in plywood or thin wood. It may just be lack of screw purchase?

I’m not a big fan of pocket hole “joinery” if that’s what you want to call it. Lots of guys use them for all kinds of things, but they are not a substitute for joinery in all cases.

My advice is use another type of joinery for drawers you don’t want those holes showing anyway.

-- Everything is a prototype thats why its one of a kind!!

View skatefriday's profile

skatefriday

380 posts in 946 days


#2 posted 02-20-2016 03:19 PM

Yes. Don’t use pocket holes. :-)

I use the Kreg system for cabinet carcass joinery, but for drawers I’ll use
a blind rabbet. You get a nice joint to look at when you open the
drawer and it’s much stronger.

View hotbyte's profile

hotbyte

842 posts in 2439 days


#3 posted 02-20-2016 05:04 PM

I made some quick shop drawers with pocket holes to see how well it would work. I drilled the pockets in back and front of drawers so opening/closing was putting shear stress on screws not on threads. Front screws covered with false front so never seen. Rear screws will only be seen if drawer is removed.

It worked fine for shop drawers…

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JCinVA

104 posts in 294 days


#4 posted 03-05-2016 07:57 AM

hotbyte,
I like that idea – what material did you use for the shop drawers?

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hotbyte

842 posts in 2439 days


#5 posted 03-05-2016 01:21 PM

It was 1/2” birch plywood.

View TTF's profile

TTF

154 posts in 2641 days


#6 posted 03-05-2016 02:10 PM

I use dado’s. Typically half-dadoes for drawer boxes. Really strong and not too complicated.

-- Troy | http://tf-workshop.com | The more I see nature, the more I am amazed at the Creator. - Louis Pasteur

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

3940 posts in 1957 days


#7 posted 03-05-2016 02:19 PM

The drawer lock joint that Troy shows is as simple as it gets, try using it once and you may switch. BTW, I am a fan of pocket holes…just not in this application.

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

View BurlyBob's profile

BurlyBob

3682 posts in 1729 days


#8 posted 03-05-2016 02:23 PM

I’m all for the drawer lock joint or half blind dovetails. Pocket holes? Yeah, not so much for just about anything.
I’ve used them maybe a half dozen times.

View CharlesA's profile

CharlesA

3022 posts in 1261 days


#9 posted 03-05-2016 02:32 PM

I’ve used pocket holes on drawers. Very solid drawers in kitchen island have been holding up for years, but those are all made out of 3/4” plywood—they’re large and hold a lot of weight.

-- "Man is the only animal which devours his own, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor." ~Thomas Jefferson

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TTF

154 posts in 2641 days


#10 posted 03-05-2016 02:35 PM

I like pocket holes for built-in cabinet boxes, where you can never see them. That’s about it for me.

-- Troy | http://tf-workshop.com | The more I see nature, the more I am amazed at the Creator. - Louis Pasteur

View BJODay's profile

BJODay

513 posts in 1407 days


#11 posted 03-05-2016 02:43 PM

I’ve made many cabinet drawers. I use a simple rabbet joint. Glue only no fasteners. I use either 1/4” masonite for the bottom or 1/2” ply if is a large drawer or tray for cookware. The drawer bottoms fit in a dado, cut into the drawer sides. When all done, I flip the drawer over and run a bead of glue around the drawer bottom into the dado. I’ve never had one fail. They stay square and true.

The corner clamping jigs from Rockler work very well.

BJ

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CharlesA

3022 posts in 1261 days


#12 posted 03-05-2016 02:59 PM

To follow up, I discovered in looking back that the pull out shelves on the island are made with 1/2” plywood, hold a tremendous amount of weight, and have held up well. I don’t use pocket holes in fine furniture, but I have no problem doing it in this kind of application. I use the Kreg right angle clamp to get it clamped as carefully as possible.

-- "Man is the only animal which devours his own, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor." ~Thomas Jefferson

View curliejones's profile

curliejones

154 posts in 1730 days


#13 posted 03-09-2016 12:04 PM


I am about to use pocket hole screws to build a face frame for a bookcase. The red oak is 3/4” thick and I’m hoping this works out well. The screws will be on the back of the face frame and then I’ll attach the assembled face to a bookcase carcass. “First” always make me a bit nervous.
Just a comment regarding “The corner clamping jigs from Rockler work very well.”- When I first moved into the new shop, I made clamping cauls that were 30” long, Clamp stands for gluing with slots for f-style bar clamps alternating with slots for pipe clamps, and corner glue blocks. The 90-degree glue blocks are made from 1.5 inch sturdy-floor and are simply a very thick (nominal 1.5” actually measures 1.25”) plywood. I made a couple sets of four each of both 6 in. and 3 in. blocks. These corner blocks are exactly square and have a square notch cut out of one corner that accepts the head of f-style bar clamps. I used these on a recent bookcase glue-up and they came in very handy. If I make any projects larger than this bookcase (6.5 X 7.0 ft) I’ll probably glue together some 3/4” plywood and cut some 9” glue blocks at 1.5” thick.

-- Like Guy Clark sez - "Sometimes I use my head, Sometimes I get a bigger hammer"

View dddddmorgan's profile

dddddmorgan

51 posts in 592 days


#14 posted 03-09-2016 12:46 PM

I’m a fan of pocket hole joining as well but for 1/2” drawer material I wouldn’t think it sturdy enough, but as proven it can be.

On the other hand aesthetic reasons keep me from using pocket holes on drawers except for the shop and such. I knocked together some particle board drawers (I know, I have no shame) 3/4” material and I made them with a false front as described. On the larger drawers I also threw in a #20 biscuit (I know, I know, no shame) and the pocket hole screws were my “clamps.”

-- Maintenance Man - I do precision guesswork based on unreliable data from people of questionable knowledge...

View NiteWalker's profile

NiteWalker

2735 posts in 2041 days


#15 posted 03-09-2016 01:13 PM



I use dado s. Typically half-dadoes for drawer boxes. Really strong and not too complicated.

- TTF


This is the right answer.

-- He who dies with the most tools... dies with the emptiest wallet.

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