Cut Through-Mortises with a Router
How to use a template and guide bushings to make through mortises with no tearout
Arts and Crafts furniture is often joined with through mortises. The secret to success with that type of joint is avoiding tearout.
Gregory Paolini, a woodworker in Waynesville, N.C., has developed a way to make clean through mortises with a router. In this video, he shows how locate the mortises on the workpiece using a thin plywood template, then using a router fitted with a guide bushing to begin cutting the mortise. He then drills a pilot hole in the middle of the mortise, flips the workpiece over, and uses a bearing-guided bit to finish the cut.