Wide miters by hand

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  • #737587
    Artur Darmofal
    Participant

    Hello fellow woodworkers. I need to do 55cm (22inch) wide mitres in oak using hand tools obviously. Anyone did it before? What tools and techniques would you use? It is a big case for documents storage for a demanding customer.
    I did a prototype in pine cutting 45 degrees by handsaw, then using knifewalls (angled ones as well), chisels and super sharp plane and have to say it is a high precision project. If something goes wrong in one corner then you have to fix all other…. Some flaws on the gaps can be hidden using screwdriver burnishing on the edge but only for small gaps closing so better not to have them. I searched on internet but have not found these to be done by hand tools. Any suggestions would be much appreciated.

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    #737669
    sanford
    Participant

    Hi Artur, I know that miters of all kinds, including that kind, are often cleaned up using various kinds of miter shooting board. I am not sure, but the shooting board for that sort of joint might be the donkeys ear. Some time back I saw an article somewhere by Paul on different kinds of shooting board. And a while ago I watched a youtube video about the many sorts of shooting boards for various miters. A search for “miter shooting board doneys ear” on youtube will probably get you the vid I saw and others.

    #737709
    Colin Scowen
    Participant

    The best miter shooting board video is from Bob Rozaieski. Link below. If it is a big piece for document storage, and may see quite a load, you may want to consider hidden dovetails.

    Colin, Czech Rep.

    #737717
    Artur Darmofal
    Participant

    Thank you Sanford and Colin. I did not know about donkeys ear but by tomorrow I will know everything 😉
    Also, just had a quick glance at Bob’s video and looks very informative. Thanks again.

    #737735
    Sven-Olof Jansson
    Participant

    Hej Artur,

    A photo of my variant of the donkey ear has an additional guide/fence. It’s based on a variant that I found in Robert Wearing’s book “Making Woodwork Aids & Devices” (ISBN 1 86108 129 4).

    It works with any bench plane, though, as expected, better with a shooting plane. It also duplicates for the long mitres of concealed mitred dovetails. The photo below shows a 450 mm (18″) wide joinery using those joints.

    Concealed mitred dovetails

    As made, this donkey ears locks the long mitre of concealed mitred dovetail to 6.35 mm (1/4″): a consequence of the width of the selected shoulder plane and the depth of the channel.

    Please allow me to include a photo on a guide for short mitres. Apart from very much improving on my mitred dovetails, it is also useful at full width mitres by allowing the end of them being pared out, thus mitigating the risk of tear outs when shooting over the end. I thought it to be of my own devise, but later found it in Mr. David Charlesworth’s video on “The Secret Mitred Dovetail” – one is rarely first with anything…

    Sven-Olof Jansson
    London, UK; Boston, MA

    Attachments:
    #737776
    Artur Darmofal
    Participant

    Hi Sven-Olof,
    wow, these photos are impressive. I was considering some splines at first (and bite my nails wondering if joint still holds with humidity changes ;)) but with these hidden dovetails I could relax.
    When Colin mentioned hidden dovetails I was not sure how it would work with miters but now having seen these photos it makes perfect sense. Thank you very much.

    #737786
    Larry Geib
    Participant

    The problem with bob’s advocacy of a shooting board that maintains a reference edge and face is that in in one’s flipping the plane ro reference the other cheek of the plane. I just don’t see that as an advantage..

    The plane iron can reference differently off the two cheeks, especially if your planes are baileys. And not the modern super engineered varieties.

    #737886
    Sven-Olof Jansson
    Participant

    Thanks Artur!

    Sven-Olof Jansson
    London, UK; Boston, MA

    #737613
    Edmund
    Participant

    Yes, I’ve done case miters/carcass miters/wide miters/whatever they’re called many times. FWIW, I use all the names interchangeably, which probably confusing, sorry about that.

    For me, the only way to succeed is to build a wide miter shooting board. Build it once, spend the time making it perfect (just like you would for any shooting board) and you’ll have perfect case miters for years and years.

    There are two main designs of which I’m aware. Here’s an example of the older style:
    https://www.theunpluggedwoodshop.com/mitre-shooting-board.html

    And a more recent design:
    https://www.finewoodworking.com/project-guides/shop-projects/a-shooting-board-for-case-miters

    You can buy them, too, here’s one example (I have no affiliation with this company, it’s just an example to show you aren’t forced to build this shop appliance):
    Case Side Miter Shooting Board v2.

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