Butterfly Keys

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Forum topic by chrisstef posted 03-08-2010 05:04 PM 3602 views 2 times favorited 3 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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17423 posts in 3029 days

03-08-2010 05:04 PM


Im looking for a little help and advice on butterfly keys. Im in the planning phase of making a table for the wife. Im planning on using reclaimed oak at random widths for the table top and use reclaimed fir butterfy keys at the joints (maybe 3 keys per joint). Im fairly confident at my ability to make the actual keys themselves but i was curious as to how one would go about making the recesses that the keys will sit in. Im assuming a router. Thanks in advance for the help!

-- Its not a crack, its a casting imperfection.

3 replies so far

View JAGWAH's profile


929 posts in 3107 days

#1 posted 03-08-2010 05:18 PM

Consider this if the inlays are mostly decorative.

Otherwise hand cut with backsaw and chisel if their through butterflies.

-- ~Just A Guy With A Hammer~

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17423 posts in 3029 days

#2 posted 03-08-2010 05:25 PM


Thanks for the link. Yes they are going to be totally decorative. I would like to inlay them along the joints. I was reading that to make the actual keys themselves i can tilt the tablesaw to 15 degrees and cut all 4 sides then rip them down to size on the band saw. Once the keys are made id lay them on the table top and using a marking knife trace around them. Then using the old steady hand, rout out the mortise needed for the keys, or i suppose i could use a chisel.

-- Its not a crack, its a casting imperfection.

View davidpettinger's profile


661 posts in 3223 days

#3 posted 03-08-2010 05:31 PM


Here is a web site that explains the procedure.

-- Methods are many,Principles are few.Methods change often,Principles never do.

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