Dovetail keys are most often inset across a single joint, but in a near-thousand-year-old door at Westminster Abbey, long butterfly keys each span four joints across five oak boards. These five Saxon-era boards are also joined with overlapped shoulders, or rabbets, down their adjoining edges. Coupled with a board rabbeted from the opposite face, the two overlap without adding thickness. This gives greater glue surface as well as making a better seal in unglued joints.

You can cut a rabbet with a chisel, but it's a job made for a plane. Rabbet planes differ from bench planes in that the iron extends the full width of the body, and the shavings escape from the side instead of a central opening. Metal-bodied rabbets generally carry their irons squarely across the body like bench planes, but most wooden rabbet planes are fitted with a skewed iron to help roll the shavings out, draw the plane into the shoulder, and help make a smooth shearing cut when working across the grain.

Skewed or square, a rabbet plane must have its iron set to protrude slightly from the working side of the plane so that it can cut flush on the sides. If the body is even slightly wider than the iron, each pass will shove the plane farther outward, leaving a sloping and terraced shoulder wall.

A simple rabbet plane has no fence to guide it parallel to the established edge; you rely instead on your left hand hanging under the sole to hold it at a constant distance. First, you define the limits of the rabbet precisely with the marking gauge. Then you establish a shoulder somewhat back from the lines, using your fingers as the fence. Next, come back with the plane laid on its side and work with pull strokes until you cut up to the line to your right. Turn the

Rabbets are stepped shoulders, easily cut with the simple rabbet plane...

... or with the moving fillister plane equipped with a fence, a depth stop, and a nicker for cross-grain shouldering.

... or with the moving fillister plane equipped with a fence, a depth stop, and a nicker for cross-grain shouldering.

Match planes are dedicated tongue and groove specialists.

plane back to the original position and finish planing down to the lower line, using the right-hand shoulder wall as the guide.

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Woodworking Tools and Installation Tips

Woodworking Tools and Installation Tips

There are a lot of things that either needs to be repaired, or put together when youre a homeowner. If youre a new homeowner, and have just gotten out of apartment style living, you might want to take this list with you to the hardware store. From remolding jobs to putting together furniture you can use these 5 power tools to get your stuff together. Dont forget too that youll need a few extra tools for other jobs around the house.

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