LumberJocks

Leigh D4R upgrade question

  • Advertise with us

« back to Power Tools, Hardware and Accessories forum

Forum topic by marc_rosen posted 02-17-2018 02:57 AM 923 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View marc_rosen's profile

marc_rosen

141 posts in 3203 days


02-17-2018 02:57 AM

Topic tags/keywords: jig question router

Hey Gang,
(Not certain if this should be submitted in JIGS, Joinery, or here, Accesories)
To any D4R users ( Pro, or those who have upgraded), How easy is it to do single pass dovetails on your jig? I have not upgraded mine yet and wanted some feedback from the group before I do. First my experiences with the jig.
I found it to be extremely easy to do through dovetails. Facetiously I think I could do them with my eyes closed.
Half blind has given me more of a challenge in that I make more mistakes or it takes more trial and error to get the best fit.
I’ve had a few opportunities to try single pass half blinds on the Super Jigs but I still had more “trial and error” with it than I did using a Porter Cable 4212 or other dedicated single pass jigs. (I’m sure it’s “Me”, and not the jig, but there seems to be almost no problems when I do through dovetails.)
Are there any personal tricks you learned to make single pass joints with little or no problems?
Thanks in advance for your comments, Marc

-- Windsurfing, Woodworking, Weaving, and Woodducks. "Most woodworkers are usually boring holes"


4 replies so far

View Rich's profile

Rich

2960 posts in 611 days


#1 posted 02-17-2018 04:19 AM

I haven’t upgraded, but I probably will. I do half blind on my D4R regularly. The key to quick setup is to realize that the only variable is bit depth, and it only varies based on the bit. That is, for any given bit, the thickness of the material is immaterial. What I did was make a setting block that I routed with each bit once I had the joint just the way I wanted it. That way, when I switch back to that bit, I put the router on my setting block, and push down to get the depth. I still need to do a test cut, but it’s almost always perfect, or one tweak away from perfect.

Hint: I used mesquite for my block. Another super hard wood like ipe would be good too, but I figured those sharp points on the bits might sink into softer wood and throw off the setting.

Another tip is to support the fingers across the jig. I found when doing 3 or 4 inch drawers, that the finger plate would sag under the weight of the router. and I’d get imperfect dovetails. They fit perfectly, but there were occasional tiny gaps caused by the cutting in the pin and/or tail board going too deep in spots. I made blocks that support it without falling through when I release the tail board. PM for photo if you want.

-- Half of what we read or hear about finishing is right. We just don’t know which half! — Bob Flexner

View pintodeluxe's profile

pintodeluxe

5701 posts in 2835 days


#2 posted 02-17-2018 04:38 AM

If you do single pass HB dovetails with the Leigh it forces you to use fixed spacing. To me that defeats the whole purpose of getting a variable spacing jig.

I started with the PC 4210 and used it for single pass HB dovetails. It worked fine, but was limited to fixed spacing.

Then I picked up an Akeda. You do everthing one board at a time with the Akeda, and I actually prefer it that way.

Finally I purchased a Leigh super 18 to see if there was anything I was missing. It was a letdown for me, and I went back to the Akeda. If I had the D4R I wouldn’t bother with the upgrade.

Rich brings up a good point about the problem with the sagging finger plate, I’ve experienced that with the Leigh as well. The Akeda solved a number of issues including rigid router support, no e-bushing to worry about, and integral dust collection to name a few.

Good luck with your decision.

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

View Rich's profile

Rich

2960 posts in 611 days


#3 posted 02-17-2018 05:06 AM


If you do single pass HB dovetails with the Leigh it forces you to use fixed spacing. To me that defeats the whole purpose of getting a variable spacing jig.

- pintodeluxe

I didn’t realize that. Thanks. You just save me some money. I do fixed spaced half blinds on cheaper drawers with false fronts, but not enough to warrant spending extra money to save a few minutes.

-- Half of what we read or hear about finishing is right. We just don’t know which half! — Bob Flexner

View marc_rosen's profile

marc_rosen

141 posts in 3203 days


#4 posted 02-17-2018 05:22 PM

Hey Guys,
Thanks for your response. I was aware that in single pass mode there is no variable spacing which is not a concern since the project I was contemplating will be a set of drawers that are replacing shelves in a kitchen closet. As I was planning it this morning I think I’d be just as happy doing all four corners as through dovetails and letting them be visible when you open the closet door.

I’ve always used some type of blocking to prevent finger plate sag but the setting blocks Rich described sounds like it would be very beneficial to minimizing the set up time to get a good fit.

Rich, how wide did you make these setting blocks? is it just one cut (groove) or more? Can I assume that you place your finger board on the setting block , adjust bit depth, and then readjust the finger board height to accommodate your stock thickness? I’ll send you the PM for some pictures as you suggested.

Anyway I would like to read from someone who has attempted single pass DTs on a D4R, so if there is anyone out there who has tried it – other than “ertyu” – who wants to respond please do so.
Thanks, Marc

-- Windsurfing, Woodworking, Weaving, and Woodducks. "Most woodworkers are usually boring holes"

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics

HomeRefurbers.com