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Thread: The Tenon Jig

  1. #21
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    Very cool.
    Love the chair parts!

    I’d also like to appreciate the time & trouble you took to video & post. Succinct but thorough & very nicely paced & videod. It’s also no longer easy to post stuff like tha here. Thanks!

    smt

  2. #22
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    Stephen,
    Thanks for the feedback, my first ever public video. It was easy to ad the link from Vimeo after the upload.
    I did not realize it would show up as it does on the PM site. All I did was copy and paste the link in my post. Vimeo has a free membership for those who just want to do one or two videos a month.

    Next video I will make sure to wear clean clothes and lose the scruff. I had been working in the metal shop all day and a friend did the video at the end of the day.

    I also tried very hard to not talk very much as I do tend to go on at length if I am showing the tenoner to a visitor, the odd one has fallen asleep. I don’t watch too many videos but it does seem like a lot of people talk a lot at the beginning so I tried to avoid that part.

    MM

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  4. #23
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    Michael, thanks for taking the time to make and post the videos, very interesting! I wouldn't worry at all about clothing and stubble, very charming like that. If you're open to criticism, I would suggest making it louder and larger, was hard to hear on my chromebook, and kinda tiny til I found it on Vimeo, where it was much larger.

    When I got to Vimeo i checked out some of your other videos, liked the bending operation with the hydraulic press. Looked like fairly thick steel plate, what is the tonnage of that press, and what are the parts for?

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    Richard, feedback is always welcome.
    I thought it was a bit quiet when we played it back but wasn’t sure if it would sound better on a desktop.
    Not sure how to get better sound, I used my ipad pro and I don’t think there is any microphone adjustment but I didn’t look yet. Maybe I have to just yell. I also just pasted in the link so I am wondering how to link to vimeo direct?

    The bending jig is set up under the 50 ton scotchman ironworker arm and it was for bending 3/16 x 1.5” flat bar into the U shape. I had to make 600 of the pieces for a job and that jig made it very fast although they did not come out perfect. We had to do a second op to get the legs parallel. Then after welding them onto the part I had to bend them again! Anyway it worked out well as it was a very profitable job.

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    Michael, when it comes to video & photos with computers, I'm completely ignorant, the classic "old dog". I'm sure you'll figure it out if it's important enuf to you, just another technology to learn and master. I'm still working my way up the cnc learning curve, pretty slow going.

    It looks like more than a few people are making serious money putting videos on the net, so maybe it is worthwhile. If I was 25 instead of 75, I'd be all over it.

  7. #26
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    The geometry issue is this:

    tenon_jig_geometry.jpg

    I thought maybe having the spindle in line with the pivots would fix it, but ... noooooo ....... You have to use a 4-bar linkage.

    Dim's are guess's based off your pic', 24" baseline, 3" offset.

    The 'angled' ends of tenons are just a short enough section of the arc that they're functionally straight.

    I'm guessing the Balestrini rotates like the Richline tenoner, which is sadly unavailable now. But something like a Multi-Router or Panto-Router is more universal in nature anyway. As is CNC.

  8. #27
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    Wesg,
    I am not sure what you are referring to but there is no angle to the small end of the tenons, they are quite square actually. Also pretty straight.
    The router stylus travels around the template and the router bit exactly copies the shape of the template, so straight sides and ends on the template equal straight sides and ends on the cut tenon. The template needs to be angled due to the way the stylus and the guide pin act together to allow the jig plate to travel around the template as you can see in the video.

    When I was first setting up the very first tenon machine I made a square ended template and then cut a tenon to see what happened. The resulting size and the angled ends of the tenon dictated the shape of the templates. I just measured the angle and then cut the templates to that angle. I made about a 1/2 dozen of these and sold them to local woodworkers. I always intended to make and publish plans as well but life gets in the way sometimes.

    It was very gratifying to work through the design and have the machine perform way better than expected and has done for almost 20 years. When you can design furniture and not be limited by the ability to cut the joinery then the design work becomes easier and the big bonus is how fast it all happens. Over the years I have made many chairs and all different designs, cutting the tenons was a very limiting factor in the beginning, after the tenon machine I could actually make money designing and building chairs due to how easy it had become to do all the joinery so quickly. Straight, angled, compound angled, haunched, offset front to back, offset top to bottom, you name it this jig can make it happen and do it so quickly.

    If you have ever used a tablesaw tenon jig then you will understand how limiting it is to make one cut at a time and then have to cut the shoulder all the way around, now try that with a compound angled tenon! Now do lefts and rights! Ouch, not going to happen with that tablesaw tenon jig. Did I mention how accurate it is... the first and last of 50 tenons will fit perfectly in the same mortice.
    The only thing close is the Balestrini machine and I seem to recall they are limited in the length of tenon, by that I mean the depth of mortice. My memory says it was in the 2" max range but that may be incorrect.

    My jig is limited by the length of router bit available and the stroke of the plunge router. The extra long tenons I made were done with the longest bit I could find at the time and I had to reduce the shank so I could make a second pass to final depth. I was also unable to retract the bit and had to be careful after the first cut was done.
    One of the few drawbacks is that the router bit is free to cut into the fence and work support surface and in practice it is easy to get in the habit of not allowing the bit to wander around after the cutting is done. Finish the cut and retract, then turn off the router. The work support surface was also designed to be easily replaceable if you had to cut into it for longer tenons or a special cut.

  9. #28
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    Michael,

    First of all, I watched your video's, and checked out your website. Stunning work. I'm capable of making a half decent 2x4 by comparison.

    The geometry thing is theoretical. As in theoretically not 'perfect'. It works, obviously, but requires getting the templates the right size and angle to create a tenon of a specific size. I drew up another example, same 24x3" triangle, following a 1x4 (for a larger error) template. I also offset the template 5.8" forward of the horizontal track, to put the vertical axis as close as it's possible to do. I got a tenon of .47 x 4", with the ends angled .03 deg.

    You'd think it should scale by half, but it's the angle created by the template offset that shrinks it a bit in 'Y'.

    So getting an exact size tenon requires a little tweaking of the template. Not a big deal, you've figured out what you need and made a drawer full. Job done.

    I'm just looking at the whole thing from a universal use perspective, where there's a fixed relationship between template and result. Hence, the 4 bar mechanism used in commercial duplicators.

    The drawback to those is complexity. You've beaten that into the ground on this. Nice.

    As far as cutting into the fence, could a perimeter 'guard' be permanently put up around the template to prevent that?

  10. #29
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    Wesg,
    A guard could be used around the template but that would restrict the movement of the router base. Quite often I need to move the base away from the tenon so I can measure and check for correct location, depth of cut etc. So far after many thousands of tenons it is not really a problem and there would be no damage to the router bit as all components are either baltic birch plywood or solid wood. I even used wood dowels for the hinge pins that allow the table to swing out for angled cuts just in case the cutter touched that area.


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