1. Thanks Paul, looking forward to building my own chest. Living in North Pole Alaska makes finding material difficult, especially finding hardwoods with matching color and grain, but should be able to find some dimensional oak at Lowe’s or Home Depot.

  2. Great video as always!

    But! If I may say so, I feel a bit let down. I mean, the video is very good. But after so many videos completely showcasing how to cut dovetails, I really feel like there should be way less emphasis on them.

    I get that there might be complete beginners watching. Sure. But there are plenty of other videos to watch if you want to see only dovetails being cut.

    I am not trying to sound as I am just nagging for no reason. It’s just that I was very much looking forward to this video and all it was was yet another hour of dovetails.

  3. I understand your frustration and wanting to get on to other sections Eckepecke, but as an educator myself, I’d say Paul & Co. have done the right thing to emphasise the dovetailing on what could be a significant piece to someone. Integral to the strength and design, it would be awkward going to watch various videos and pricing the info together. Like you said people of varying abilities here. And like Ben says, there are still things to be learned here even if you’ve seen/done dovetails many times before.

    I thoroughly enjoyed it and glad this process wasn’t skipped over and the attention to detail and accuracy was front and centre.

  4. Certainly. But with that reasoning, why skip the dimensioning of the boards? The planing of the surfaces? The selection of wood?

    I am comming of as an asshole right now and I can see it. But still, alot of steps must be skipped in order to not be stuck on square one in every video. So why showcase every single second of dovetailing?

  5. Why the switch between bevel down and bevel up on the first chop. Pin as waste you went bevel down and with the tail waste you switched? Then you went back to the bevel down to finish out. You also made a point of saying bevel up on this one. I watched you long enough you have purpose to every motion so I know there must be a why behind it.

  6. Paul, Your balance programming is great, keeps me coming back. Comments noted are the salt and pepper of your filet mignon presentations. My traveling box will be a bit longer and I lack the practice on dovetails. I will practice on a few other boards while attempting to keep up with your video pace on this project. December getting colder. I am grateful everyone’s warming up with feedback. All keep shaking P&S, keeps me thinking what I’m not doing. Thanks Paul jeff

  7. Paul and Team ,
    Great episode .. I found the level of content spot on and the video work is excellent . Every time I do a knife wall I hear Paul’s voice ” Lightly , Lightly with that first stroke ! ” Do you know the number of episodes for this build ? Regards , Peter

  8. Hey Eric, please don’t feel down. I think the emphasis wasn’t on just dovetails, but more into accuracy… just like Paul said, your toolbox is the showcase of your work—when I take my toolbox with me to a jobsite, I get so much compliments—Paul is right about it.
    Then he mentions about undercutting—that it’s not a good habit to undercut. This can be true on some pieces where you have to do a bit more shaping and fitting—if you noticed, paul was planing the inside of the top/bottom to make them fit (that’s another way of making very tight dovetails fit)
    Anyhow, I just looked at the shop drawing of this tool box and it’s really beautiful.
    Just wait for the next episodes, as there are some really cool drawers with side runners, a five piece door panel, equally divided back panel with tongue and groove… I don’t think you’d need anything more on this toolbox…

  9. I think the point here is that the project isn’t just a toolbox it’s also a showcase of workmanship and the dovetail aspects are therefore first and foremost in setting the standard for the remainder of the piece. I am also in the world of instruction and repetition is key to developing skill. Each time I watch a video with repeated elements there are slight tweaks in technique that are specific. This provides knowledge and experience of a subject that enables true understanding of what is on the face of it a simple task.

    People learn differently, I for one enjoy seeing the repeated elements for the above reasons. Others don’t, we all learn differently and from an educators perspective I find the content appropriately balanced in most cases towards the key elements for success.

  10. Great video. I needed the “back to basics” kind of lesson as I tend to let myself drift to over-engineer over-complex project. Somehow this “simple” box is intimidating as a showcase work.

    One thing I would like to see though, is how you are working to dimensions the wood with the bandsaw. Maybe I missed it in another video, but I would be interested to see how to cut multiple small part for a project like this one in a quick and safe way.
    I feel confident about squaring everything with the plane after the bandsaw, as you explained it many times, but I am more confused about the dimensioning.

    Great photography, as always.

  11. Had the same thought as Eckepecke then drifted to the same thought as John – I think it probably just has to have enough useful stuff in it without having to go to other videos that it can still keep newbies interested and wanting to continue with woodworking. By extension, most of what we see and hear has been covered in other videos so the new stuff distills down to about 5-7 minutes (a guess) at best. Wouldn’t be very watchable if it starts with “I prepared the material (see video blah, blah), then dovetailed the corners of the carcase (see video blah blah for sizing and video blah blah for cutting) etc.”

  12. Hello Everyone,

    Thanks for all the comments. Regarding the level of detail on dovetails in this episode, we try to mix this up from time to time. At the moment we are anticipating starting building all the furniture for entire house in the near future. Doing this will likely mean we have to sometimes skip repetition. So, we are taking every opportunity at the moment to reinforce skills like these. Some of you will have to bear with us now and in future some other people might have dip back into projects like these to get these details and apply them to other projects.

    We always appreciate the feedback and our answer is to constantly reinforce the basics while planning to build on all of this soon to a greater extent than ever before.

  13. I, for one, always appreciate that we see all the work and processes included in the video. No matter how many times I see dovetails cut, it re-enforces what I have ‘learned’ already and provides those little ‘aha’ moments when something finally sinks in. Plus, seeing the work in each session gives me a rough idea of how much time it took Paul to do the project. Take that time, add some for the times when he does two or three repetitions on other parts, multiply it by 3, and that’s a rough idea of how long I need to plan to do the same thing. Thanks.

  14. Tenbears, that seemed to me a very good question. Though only a modest dovetailer, I think I can answer your question. If I have this wrong, maybe someone else can correct me. When Paul cuts dovetails, he chops down to his line (of course, he first chops a bit away from his line and then chops to his line — pretty standard practice to avoid moving the knife wall.) and then removes waste wood to clear space for his next chop at the knife wall. The basic way to remove waste wood is to turn your chisel bevel up and push it in. This sort of cut is like a paring cut. You call it a paring cut when you are just paring away a bit of wood. I do not know what it is called when you go deeper as we do here, but it is the same orientation of the chisel — bevel up. You can cut an entire dovetail using that cut to remove waste. You can do it by pushing the chisel with just your hands or you can get more power with a hammer. Paul obviously does both in various videos

    But you can also remove waste a different way. You can cut deep into the waste wood using the same cuts you would use mortising. The basic move is to hold the chisel vertically with the bevel away from the knife wall and to chop down. You then lever away the waste. You can go very deep very fast using this mortising cut. Obviously, Paul does not just hold his chisel vertically here or when cutting a mortise. He angles it various ways to help remove waste as he goes deeper. That is what heppens when you see his bevel down. You will often cut this deep hole keeping your chisel a bit away from the knife wall to avoid moving that knife wall until you are reasonably deep. You can move your chisel further from the knife wall, just as you do when cutting a mortise, to open up more space so as to go deeer.

    So why use one approach rather than the other? I often start from one side using the mortising approach. I can cut down deep while leaving the outer edge pretty wide to help support my cuts when I flip the board over to work from the other side. I get halfway down or more using the mortising technique on that first side. I then flip over and use a bevel up cut, like a paring cut, to remove waste on the second side. I chop down at my knife wall and then remove that waste bevel up. The wide edge that I left from the first side helps support the dovetail and, hopefully, reduces tearout as I cut down. Often I remove the entire edge on that second side by just chipping it out. I do not need the edge on the second side since I do not flip the dovetail over to chop from the first side again. Removing that edge makes it easier to pare away the waste on that side.

    Hope this helps.

  15. It has a lot to do wheather you use a vise or not.
    Bevel up on the bench and the wood slides all over the place bevel down it stays put better.
    In a vise it isnt as critical but it is a lot easier to both pare and chop bevel up brcause you are supported against movement of the piece.

  16. That’s a really clear description, Sanford. Thanks for taking the time to put it down. I do pretty much the same, and find it works really well for me. It’s taken quite a few dovetails and mortises (a couple of years now!) to really gain the confidence that I can be vertical with my chopping cuts though. I have to say that until I can get a perfect joint every single time like Paul is doing, I’m more than happy to watch the process over and over, it reinforces Paul’s voice in my head while I’m in the shop… 🙂

  17. After cutting my pins on the end board, I stood the top board on end and made it flush to locate the knife wall for the dovetail. I made a small knife mark at each end but when I put my square on them (using it on the reference side like a good boy) the two knife marks didn’t quite line up ( off maybe the thickness of a pencil line). The end of my pin board is dead square to the reference side so I suppose my top board isn’t quite the same thickness from one side to the other. My question is, should I try to adjust the thickness of the top board or just use a straight edge to make the knife wall between those two marks? I would think that hand planed boards would often not be exactly the same thickness from one side to the other on a board that is almost 8 inches wide. I feel fortunate that I was able to get it within a pencil mark of being the same thickness.

  18. First of all, I am not watching the series, so I may be talking about something that is answered in the video, and there may be other joinery that would help to correct this. Are the reference faces for these joints on the inside or on the outside? I would assume that the reference face would be on the inside, as you want the joint to pull together as true as possible to avoid unsightly gaps on the dovetails. That begs the question, has the reference face gone out of flat. If it has, then you could reflatten the ends, check for wind and then remark the tail board. There are also other options as well, that I am sure others will provide, but I am curious about the location of the ref face.

  19. Great project which I have just started in ash to keep my modest tool collection in! Can I ask, where did Paul get that dovetail template from please? I can’t find anything like it online with a 90 and skewed angle combo…?

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