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Depth of mortise for tenon?

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Forum topic by BerBer5985 posted 02-13-2012 09:58 PM 1550 views 0 times favorited 7 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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BerBer5985

445 posts in 1882 days


02-13-2012 09:58 PM

This might be a really dumb question, but I have only attempted to cut through mortises but when chopping a hidden mortise by hand, how do you insure the dept is correct? Is it just measuring and trial and error? Does it matter if the mortise is deeper slightly than the tenon or the should the bottom of of the tip of the tenon touch the bottom of the mortise flush? I’m probably making more out of it than it is…

-- Greg, Owner, Quality Carpet One, www.qualitycarpetonecrofton.com


7 replies so far

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Loren

8301 posts in 3110 days


#1 posted 02-13-2012 10:05 PM

There should be 1/8” or so air space at the bottom of the mortise.
More is okay but there must be some space at the bottom because
glue gets in there and dries at the bottom. If there is no room,
hydraulic pressure can split your wood if you let it dry in the clamps
or push the joint apart if you don’t leave it in the clamps.

As a practical matter, if your stock it true and joints are cut well,
you can usually use clamps to get the parts together and take
them off shortly after the glue grabs.

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BerBer5985

445 posts in 1882 days


#2 posted 02-13-2012 10:10 PM

Ok, so for all intents and purposes, just “eyeball” the depth roughly. I thought that was the case, but I wasn’t sure. How about when making a mitered tenon. Like two stretchers coming in and meeting in the middle. i know the miters should be cut short, but as long as the mortise meet in the middle, does it matter if one is slightly deeper than the other? In order words, if I cut the first mortise and it’s an 1/8” or so deeper than the mortise that meets it in the middle making more of an F-shape mortise as opposed to an L-shaped mortise in the middle.

-- Greg, Owner, Quality Carpet One, www.qualitycarpetonecrofton.com

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Loren

8301 posts in 3110 days


#3 posted 02-13-2012 10:21 PM

Other than the factor of weakening the leg where the two
mortises are by removing excessive stock? No, there’s not
a problem with over-depthing one or both mortises.

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BerBer5985

445 posts in 1882 days


#4 posted 02-13-2012 10:33 PM

Thanks for the info! So to get that depth, it’s essentially just roughly measuring the depth until you’re deep enough for the the tenon to seat properly with space.

-- Greg, Owner, Quality Carpet One, www.qualitycarpetonecrofton.com

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ELCfinefurniture

112 posts in 1782 days


#5 posted 02-14-2012 10:58 AM

Like was already said. Deep enough to seat the tenon with a little extra room. I usually would set my combo square for the desired depth plus that little bit to prevent bottoming out and check the mortise with that as I am chopping

-- {Current North Bennet street school student}

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Howie

2656 posts in 2385 days


#6 posted 02-14-2012 11:52 AM

When tenons are at a right angle to each, other miter the ends and cut the miter short for your glue space.

-- Life is good.

View Roger's profile

Roger

19867 posts in 2266 days


#7 posted 02-14-2012 08:43 PM

It’s always better to have a shorter tenon, then a longer one. Also, what Loren said

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed. Kentuk55@yahoo.com

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