As I have stated many times before, I like to call myself a Modern Traditionalist. Today, I want to show you how I use a mix of the old and the new.
When cutting small to medium sized pieces to length, I prefer to use my antique miter saw. I had the saw sharpened by a real “sawyer” and that makes a hellva’ difference. My miter saw is very accurate and it leaves a near perfect finish.
Now, when it comes to making mortises, unless they are HUGE, I am going to use my hollow mortise chisel machine. I could drill the holes then chisel out the sides and hope that I get them perfectly square, but the power tool really can do it better than I can by hand. But I could do it if I had too.
To layout the mortises that will receive the rails, it was vitally important that they be perfect so the rails would be flush with the top and bottom piece. So I used my marking gauge, my combination square, and my scribing knife to layout and two sides of the mortise and then scribe a 45 degree angle. The diagonal line was used for a location marker for the tip of the brad point drill bit. I could put the tip of the bit on the diagonal line, then move it forward or backward on the line to get the chisel points right on the scribed lines for the mortise. Then a quick whack or two with the joiners mallet made the referencing marks that I would use when I set the piece of wood on the hollow mortise chisel machine. Then batta boo batta bing, drill the mortises and your done!
Next step, fit the tenons into the mortises to make sure they line up right and fit tight. More on that…..next time.