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Your First Hand Cut Dovetail

a few months ago

Don't Go Buy a Dovetail Saw

I remember doing a ton of research when I decided I wanted to hand cut dovetails.  I read everything and listened and watched podcasts and made lists of tools I needed to have and all kinds of things I needed to do first BEFORE I could ever even consider actually cutting a dovetail.  

I distinctly remember the feeling of almost letdown when I finally did cut it.  "Well that wasn't that hard!" I thought.  After all that preparing and planning it turns out it was just sawing to a line and a bit of chopping with a chisel.  But after all the theory it was eye opening to just walk through the process of cutting the joint.  That alone was my biggest gain from the first dovetail joint.  

hand cut dovetails

No my first dovetail wasn't perfect.  It had flaws for sure.  But I learned so much more in actually cutting that first joint than I had with all of my research and tool buying.  So here is the lesson for your first dovetail:  grab a backsaw.  If you don't already have one go buy a $10 one at the big box store.  Grab a chisel or two and just go cut a dovetail.  Go figure right?  Actually cutting a dovetail will teach you more than any amount of reading and video watching.  

...assuming of course that you at least watch this video first.  Yeah I see the irony.

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