How do I get this dovetail jig to work?

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Forum topic by Dean J posted 06-24-2010 09:22 PM 9097 views 0 times favorited 7 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Dean J

19 posts in 3065 days

06-24-2010 09:22 PM

Topic tags/keywords: dovetail jig dovetail bit question

Dovetail Jig

So, a good friend who closed his woodshop gave me a homemade dovetail jig, and then moved outta town.

What he didn’t give me was the size of bit I need to have, or size of template guide, or instructions on how to use the thing. Help?

He had to get the plastic inserts from somewhere, but I don’t know where, unfortunately. The bottom one, with larger teeth, has teeth about .435” wide, and about the same size gap in-between. The top one, with smaller teeth, has teeth just over .15” wide, and a gap of about .315”.

No idea how to figure this one out without a lot of trial and error.

7 replies so far

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Dean J

19 posts in 3065 days

#1 posted 06-24-2010 09:59 PM

Okay, my assumption is that I need a straight bit and a dovetail bit, and a template guide. I take off one set of teeth and set it aside based on if I want a small or large dovetail.

But the sizes of the bits and templates, I dunno. What the heck do y’all use?

View TomHintz's profile


207 posts in 3420 days

#2 posted 06-24-2010 10:26 PM

I am afraid you are in the deep ca ca on this one. Dovetail jigs – and those templates – are designed with a specific bit and collar in mind. Without knowing who made it or an instruction sheet this could get expensive as you try all of the possible combinations. A friend of mine got a dovetail jig the same way and lacking the same information and he wound up nailing it to the shop wall as a reminder to not do that again.

-- Tom Hintz,

View jusfine's profile


2422 posts in 2948 days

#3 posted 06-24-2010 11:23 PM

I agree with Tom, could be costly, but would be fun to try…

-- Randy "You are judged as much by the questions you ask as the answers you give..."

View ajosephg's profile


1880 posts in 3583 days

#4 posted 06-24-2010 11:24 PM

Well – it does exihibit great workmanship. It will look good on your wall! :)

Seriously – you might be able to find the source of the templates by seaching the web.

-- Joe

View Michael Murphy's profile

Michael Murphy

453 posts in 3027 days

#5 posted 06-24-2010 11:56 PM

Can’t you call and ask him?

-- Michael Murphy, Woodland, CA.

View Chuck Anstrom's profile

Chuck Anstrom

87 posts in 3047 days

#6 posted 06-24-2010 11:58 PM

Contact Woodsmith. They sold this jig about 15 years ago.

-- Chuck Anstrom - Virginia

View Dean J's profile

Dean J

19 posts in 3065 days

#7 posted 06-26-2010 12:19 AM

I’d asked him about the bit sizes before, he didn’t know.

This time, I asked him “where’d you get the plan”, he said the same thing that Chuck posted; Woodsmith.


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