300 Dovetail Jig - Fine Woodworking Tool Review
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300 Dovetail Jig

CMT - 300 Dovetail Jig

The CMT 300 Dovetail Jig cuts standard and rabbeted half-blind dovetails.

$130 (As of 10/15/2006)

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Editor's Review: Tool Test: Half-Blind Dovetail Jigs

by Fred Sotcher

review date: October 15, 2006

Unlike most tested, the CMT 300 Dovetail Jig comes unassembled and requires about 20 minutes of assembly. The standard jig comes with a template for cutting standard and rabbeted half-blind dovetail, and other templates are available as accessories for cutting through dovetails and box joints.

The settings on the jig were stable and the final results excellent. I liked the fact that this jig used an adjustable template to adjust the depth of cut. But there were a number of shortcomings with the CMT 300. The jig comes with fixed offset guides, so in order to achieve symmetrical joints with half-pins at each end; you must cut the stock to one of eight standard widths. Also, the router guide included did not fit any of the routers I own, so I ended up using a standard guide in its place, which had to be ground shorter to work. Last, the jig relies on clamp screws to secure the parts instead of the quick-action levers provided on most of the other jigs, which I prefer.

The operating manual is in two booklets for a total of 23 pages. One booklet contains the text, the other the illustrations. I found it hard to jump back and forth between the two, and the use of both metric and imperial measurements added to the confusion. Also, the manual specified a bit height of 11/16 in. which was beyond the capacity of the bit that was supplied. It turned out that the proper height was 9/16 in. A list of replacement parts was included.

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Editor Test Results:

Instructions Poor
Learning Curve Average
Ease of Setup Excellent
Ease of Use Good

Manufacturer Specifications

Manufacturer CMT
Manufacturer's Web Site www.cmtusa.com
Manufacturer's Phone Number 888-268-2487
Thickness Capacity 7/16 in. to 1 in.
Width Capacity 12 in.
Variable Spacing
Templates Included HB
Accessories Available TH, B

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