I've been reading lately about historical construction techniques, so I wanted to try a few things. First, I'm going to separate the chest into three drawer compartments, oriented vertically like a typical bureau. So I needed to practice letting a dovetailed piece into a sliding dovetail housing.
|Some practice at sliding dovetails|
Laying out the tails and cutting them out was straight forward. Knifed a baseline all around 1/2" from the end. Penciled a line on the end grain about 1/16" from each face and used a DT marker to get the angles.
|Sawed to the lines|
|Knife-marking the recess on the edge|
|Squared the knife lines onto the face to about 1 1/2"|
I sawed just inside the layout lines and removed a triangle of waste with a 1/8" chisel (the top of the recess was less than 1/4" wide).
|Starting to remove waste|
BTW, in sawing to the lines, some people will saw well past the end line on the face of the board so that it's easier to remove the waste. In the first photo above, my recess second from the right has these saw lines extended past the stop line. Even though this will be inside the cabinet, I think it looks horrible and just can't do it that way.
|Waste removed almost to the diagonal saw kerf|
From there, I used the original knife lines to guide the chisel in paring the walls.
|Paring to the knife lines|
Then it was a matter of running the knife in the corners and chiseling out the waste until the recess was completed. This took several iterations.
|Knifing to deepen the side wall|
And here's what it looked like:
Then it was time to tap the tail into the socket and see how it fits.
|Half way home|
This one came out great. I had 8 total to do and a couple of them were a bit loose. Just a small gap leads to a poor fit.
|A little gappy|
|Way too lose (same joint as above pic)|
The two photos above are of the same joint, only I've let gravity pull the cantilevered rail away from the joint in the last photo. Oh well, not perfect, but not too worried about it.
Next time I'll continue with mortising these rails to fit drawer runners. Until then, have fun and stay safe.