Cutting Through Dovetails
Pins or tails first: a case for each
Synopsis: Vincent Laurence of Fine Woodworking introduces different points of view on cutting through dovetails. He asked Tage Frid and Christian Becksvoort, who have 99 years of cutting dovetails between them, to tell how and why they cut dovetails the way they do. Cutting pins first makes sense to Frid, who says it’s easier to hold the pin board in place to mark the tails than it is to hold the tail board against the end of what will be the pin board. Becksvoort finds it more efficient to cut the tails first, taping two boards together. Both offer more explanation on why they prefer their methods, and dozens of detailed photographs follow their work, step by step.
I was trying to explain to someone years ago why I’d just taken a job as an apprentice woodworker after spending four years and $70,000 on an English degree. Suddenly, in the…