I am making dovetail joints in walnut bookcases. I tried a homemade jig that didn’t work well so now I am cutting the tails with a dovetail router bit and sawing the pins by hand. I have the inevitable (for me) gaps in the joints and I want to fill them by shimming with slivers of walnut. My biggest problem is knowing when to cut the shims and insert them. Obviously I can only do this when the joints are glued up but then the squeeze out glue covers the gaps and I don’t know what to fill. If I wait till the glue dries it is almost impossible to insert a shim. Since I often read about plugging up dovetail gaps I know it must be a workable technique but how do I do it?
Edited 5/9/2007 10:56 pm ET by jrogerh