Dovetail widget, not very useful

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Dovetail widget, not very useful

Postby rwebcon » Sun Jul 23, 2017 2:06 am

I knew of the widget some time ago but never had a need for it. I can use it now for some quick dovetails. There seems to be some problems in the joints fitting together. It impossible to join them without some filling on all the pins and dovetails and then the joints do not look very good. I have tried several things, fillets, allowances on material thickness but nothing seems to work. Has anyone found this gadget useful? Is there something I’m missing on setting this up? Is there something else out there I could use to created dovetails without having to move to vertical machining?
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Re: Dovetail widget, not very useful

Postby 4DThinker » Sun Jul 23, 2017 2:49 am

Due to the nature of spinning bits you'll never get perfect fitting dovetails by cutting both halves laying flat. I made a sample joint using the gadget, even added a little extra cutting as I remember but still had to do a little filing to get a tight fit. Gave up on the gadget. If there is any way to make a vertical clamping jig for your CNC, even if it is difficult, I highly recommend you go ahead and do it. Once you can clamp parts vertically it opens up a whole new infinity of possible joinery variations you can cut. Go one step further and make your jig so it can be adjusted to any angle and you've found still another infinity.

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http://4dfurniture.blogspot.com/2016/05/creative-cnc-joinery-and-other-cnc-cut.html
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Re: Dovetail widget, not very useful

Postby ger21 » Sun Jul 23, 2017 3:08 am

rwebcon wrote: Is there something else out there I could use to created dovetails without having to move to vertical machining?


You can get special tooling for machining dovetails on the flat.
https://www.vortextool.com/index.cfm?fu ... 85E8A005BF
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Re: Dovetail widget, not very useful

Postby Rcnewcomb » Sun Jul 23, 2017 3:21 am

You also may wish to look at using other joints that are optimized to be cut on a CNC: 50 digital wood joints

Image
- Randall Newcomb
10 fingers in, 10 fingers out - another good day in the shop
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Re: Dovetail widget, not very useful

Postby Adrian » Sun Jul 23, 2017 8:39 am

I use the Dovetail gadget all the time for storage boxes and it works great for that purpose with no manual adjustment needed but each time I use a different material there is quite a bit of trial cutting. That's the nature of cutting parts that fit together with a CNC.

As has been said there is always going to be compromise with a dovetail joint done on the flat and you do sacrifice looks for convenience in this case which is why I use the joints for storage boxes rather than fine work.
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Re: Dovetail widget, not very useful

Postby rwebcon » Sun Jul 23, 2017 3:28 pm

Thanks for the input from all. About the gadget, I would think there would be some allowances in the setup to adjust fit. Since someone has gone to all the work to create this
gadget with just a small modification it would be great. Anyone know who I could contact to see if modifications are possible.
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Re: Dovetail widget, not very useful

Postby Adrian » Sun Jul 23, 2017 4:24 pm

It's a Vectric rather than 3rd party gadget so it would be Vectric (support@vectric.com) you would need to contact.
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Re: Dovetail widget, not very useful

Postby rwebcon » Tue Jul 25, 2017 4:07 am

There is an allowance setting in the gadget, I just blew by it, my mistake. It shows up when to create the tool path. About .01 will work just fine....
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