For a ‘halving joint’ the tools you will need are:-
1. Tenon Saw
2. Marking Gauge
3. Try Square
4. Sharp Bevel Edge Chisel
6. Stanley Knife
7. Ruler/Tape Measure
8. Hammer/Wooden Mallet
This halving joint is very strong, stronger then tenons or dowels. The two pieces to be joined are the same thickness and width.
Step1:- Marking Out!
First, take your try square and pencil and mark the face and edges as shown in the picture to the right:-
The distance between the lines is the width of the mating piece.
Next you need to find out half the thickness of your timber by dividing the total thickness by 2. After you have this you need to set your marking gauge to it. (right ->)
You now need to use your marking gauge and gouge a ‘halfway’ line between the two lines on both edges. A good tip so you don’t go passed the line is to, put a small indentation just before the line using your marking gauge – so when you gouge the line, the pin on the marking gauge should fall into it, therefore stopping you going too far.
When using the marking gauge it’s best to hold it at a slight angle and to take several light passes. By doing this you should be left with a nice straight gouge line. (right)
Now you might think you don’t need to mark out the waste but do, as it saves you making mistakes later on.
Once you’ve marked the lines with a pencil, score the two lines on the face (top) with a knife (wasteside).
Step2:- Cutting The Shoulders!
Clamp the piece firmly into a bench vice or workmate and cut the shoulder lines – making sure you cut on the wasteside and that you don’t go past the halfway line.
Step3:- Chiseling Out The Waste!
After you’ve cut the shoulder lines, take a bevel edge chisel and place it slightly above the halfway line (bevel side up). Making sure you are holding the chisel level, tap it into the wood with a hammer. At least half the waste to be removed should have popped up (below). Remove that half,
un-clamp the workpiece and turn it around and work from the other side.
Now just work your way down to the halfway line, taking your time, don’t rush it.
Once your happy with it do the mating piece, after that do a try-fit. If its a bit tight, take a bit more off with a chisel.
*Note: When marking out, mark the mating piece at the same time, cut the shoulder lines all at the same time as well.