Woodworkers like to see how things work, right out in the open. We love looking at gears, levers and cams, and when it comes to furniture, there’s nothing more fascinating than exposed joints, like dovetails and wedged tenons. This bookstand is held together entirely with wedges: no glue, screws or dowels. When you give the wedges a satisfying tap home, the stand is solid as a rock. These joints are extra strong because the wedges fit into precisely tapered holes.
Wedged joints look awfully complicated to make, but take heart. We’ve worked out a surefire method that’s really quite simple. The key tool is a router equipped with a top-bearing flush-cutting straight bit. It works so well with a shop-made jig that you could use it to build virtually any size bookcase or shelving unit with tenons that extend all the way through the sides.
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