Biscuit Joints in Drawers

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Forum topic by doncutlip posted 12-30-2011 02:52 AM 6059 views 0 times favorited 10 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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2832 posts in 3578 days

12-30-2011 02:52 AM

Topic tags/keywords: question biscuit joiner

I’ve built quite a bit of shop furniture lately, and for the drawers I’ve been using biscuit joints on the corners. Now I’m wondering how long they will last. Anyone have experience with this? Yeah, I hope to get into dovetails someday, when I start making ‘real’ stuff.

-- Don, Royersford, PA

10 replies so far

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2544 posts in 2991 days

#1 posted 12-30-2011 03:33 AM

If you are using full extension drawer runner hardware, I wouldn’t worry about it, there is very little force applied to the front and back, the drawer sides take the load. If not, I don’t know. Depends on how much and what kind of glue of what kind of timber.

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1735 posts in 2831 days

#2 posted 12-30-2011 04:11 AM

Don, the good news is that it is legal to use biscits on drawer construction. The real news is that it is of no benifit that I can think of. If your drawers fail it is unlikely a result of biscits or lack therof. Enjoy JB

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2832 posts in 3578 days

#3 posted 12-30-2011 04:31 AM

For shop furniture I just used pine, but I did use Accuride full extension slides. I also put the biscuits parallel the the drawer face. Guess they’ll last as long as the glue does.

-- Don, Royersford, PA

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1642 posts in 3006 days

#4 posted 12-30-2011 06:01 PM

The Biscuit Jointer is one of those tools I bought watching Norm during his biscuit phase. Unfortunately its one of those tools that I rarely ever use. With the projects that Norm did build with biscuits and the stress points on those joints. I don’t see why they wouldn’t work with drawers using the Accuride extensions to relieve the stress points on the joints. Will be interesting to see how they stand the test of time.

-- I don't make mistakes, I have great learning lessons, Greg

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117114 posts in 3599 days

#5 posted 12-30-2011 06:08 PM

I’ve used biscuits in the past ,they seem to work ok unless your using them on large drawers. If drawers are for the shop or a low end job I use locking rabbit joints.

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

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932 posts in 2377 days

#6 posted 12-30-2011 08:53 PM

To be honest, you can but joint, glue and put screws in it for shop furniture, there is very little likelihood of the joint failing unless you are using the antiquated center rail system. And as long as your cuts are square, your drawers should be to.

Granted there are nicer ways of doign drawers, and alot of furniture makers will say this is the way or that is the way to go, but honestly it’s mostly fluff. Glues have come a long way, so have fasteners. What was needed in the 1400s to make things stay together is a bit different. But If you are using dovetails, box joints and so on, it’s really to dress it up more than anything else.

-- The mark of a good carpenter is not how few mistakes he makes, but rather how well he fixes them.

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2544 posts in 2991 days

#7 posted 12-30-2011 09:55 PM

If you’re anxious about the drawer construction, you could dovenail in a few panel pins.

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1099 posts in 3366 days

#8 posted 01-07-2012 08:40 PM

I love the Kreg pocket hole system and use it for many projects including drawers. Works great ant the holes in front can be hidden by the drawer front and the holes for the back of the draw can be on the back of the back piece. So, no holes showing or to be plugged.

I used to use bisquits for everything and even have the mini bisquit joiner. Since I got the Kreg and my pin nailer I never touch the bisquits anymore.

-- Vicki on the Eastern Shore of MD

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14940 posts in 2712 days

#9 posted 01-08-2012 04:09 AM

a1Jim, Thanks for posting that link. I use that joint for a lot of drawers but never knew it had a name. It seems to be strong enough and is quick and easy. I saw it in Wood magazine several years ago.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

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2832 posts in 3578 days

#10 posted 01-08-2012 05:23 AM

yeah, thanks, I’ll have to try that on my next set of drawers

-- Don, Royersford, PA

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