Tuesday, April 17, 2012

a fat slippery joint

 The neck-pillar joint is a tricky, long-mitred, much-end-grained, hard-to-clamp, slippery and very important joint so I took a bit of time to have the two mating surfaces nicely flat and keen to get together. This meant that assembly wasn't about placement or avoiding twist or other distortions, but simply about holding things where they felt comfortable until the glue set. Once you dispose of the need to apply great force to bring things together clamping arrangements can seem less daunting.

Above, the mortices were cut with a router and the tenon is a loose piece of hardwood machined to be a comfortable sliding fit. Note the grain direction on the tenon. The cross grain will resist splitting across the joint.

It all went together well and is held by four blocks, which are clamped to the work while another clamp on each face provides compression between the blocks. This provided enough pressure to close the joint and squeeze out enough thickened glue to satisfy me that the joints were fully wet. I used epoxy for this one, applied thin- especially in plenty around all that end-grain, allowing it to soak in before applying thickened stuff liberally.


  1. Beautiful work! I think when I worked at Dusty Strings years ago they cut the pieces with an extra step for the clamps on the outside. Then the steps were cut off after the glue-up.

  2. Great to hear from you Scott, I appreciate your feed-back- and a very useful insight into methods of work. That's certainly something I'd bear in mind if I'm ever asked to make another!