Descriptions of the various joints used in furniture making.

The mortise and tenon joint is one of the strongest and most fundamental joints in furniture making. It consist a socket, or mortise, in one piece and a tongue shaped tenon on the other piece. The two fit together to make a really strong joint. Mortise and tenon joints can be visible and decorative, or hidden from view.

The dovetail joint is another common joint in fine artisan furniture. It consists of interlocking pins and tails.

anatomy_of_a_dovetail_joint

 

A through dovetail has pins and tails which completely pass through each other

Joinery-halfblinddovetail

The drawers are made with dovetail construction

The drawers are made with dovetail construction

 

A half blind dovetail does not go all the way through. It is only visible from one side, and is typically used for drawer construction. The drawers on my workbench are made with half blind dovetails.

Joinery-slidingdovetail

 

Sliding dovetails are used in case construction.

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