Sunday, February 23, 2014

Shooting board for truing long miter joints

Project X requires long miter joints to make up vertical members. The longest is 52" long. And that's a lot of room for error. So, I built this shooting board to true the joints before gluing up.

Setting up... In this picture, there are small offcuts to the right of the part to be trimmed. Those are there to balance out the board that will be clamped on top to guide the plane. There's also an end stop.

With the upper guide board on top... The board needs to be aligned with the lower track before being clamped into place. Being me, I tried to think up a way that would do this more automatically and precisely, but this was the simplest and most practical way to move forwards.

Trimming the beveled edge. With a properly set chip breaker, grain direction isn't really much of an issue. Popular Woodworking will be running an article in their April issue on how to do that.

Shop tip: The finished surface will come to a delicate edge. Laying the boards flat on the bench, or out of the way on an accessory table, with this edge down, will help keep them from getting damaged. And, don't do this until the step just before glue up, so you don't have to worry about moving them around the shop. The less you have to handle wood with a sharp 45 degree edge, the less you'll expose it to getting beaten up.

The finished joint... is as close to perfect as I can get. (Picture of the dry fit)

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