This Space for Rent

Well, it is a toy, but it’s harder than it looks

My brother gave me a little router bench for my birthday, so I've been trying to learn how to make fingerjoints so that I can build drawers into chests of drawers and desks.

It's harder than it looks, and it doesn't look easy. My experiments have gone from doing it freehand by clamping boards to a faceplace and manually adjusting it sideways (didn't work) to a couple of revisions of this fingerjointing tool.

This tool is simply a piece of wood cut in half, with a 12 inch long threaded rod pulling a nut attached to a flange attached to a faceplate which I can clamp the sacrificial pieces of wood to. The threaded rod is so I can (allegedly) pull the faceplate sideways by a fixed amount per turns of the screw. I discovered that this works better when the faceplace fits snugly against the sliding base. The sliding base is attached to the el-cheapo pusher that came with the router table (the second mistake-- when I get the chance I'm going to cut a piece of wood to fit the pusher channel and screw it into place) and I just grab both sides of the baseplate and shove it back and forth.

The plan is, of course, to make fingerjoints without any fuss, and I want to make fingerjoints because they're really really strong. Plus, if I can get this tool to work properly, I can also use it for other sorts of joints and avoid the pesky problem of having to hand-cut part of them.

The wingnut I'm using to turn the threaded rod is probably not the best thing to use, but it's not as kludgy as the countersunk nut that pulls the faceplate sideways (and, because it's countersunk, it pops right on out if you accidentally push the plate ahead of the screw) so it will be replaced as soon as I can verify that I can make the tool work as advertised.