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The wonder of the domino

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petermillard

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It's one of the few tools you can get most of your money back on if you sell it on, and all I hear is that you find new uses for it when you on one and that it's very fast for lots of jobs. When the time you get in a workshop is limited I get why people want one, especially as you can get most of that money back if you want to.
Yes indeed. A unique product combined with a certain amount of tool fetishisation stokes demand; throw in annual Festool price hikes and no real competition and you get a tool that’s essentially free, provided you keep it for a few years.
 

Spectric

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In my opinion the domino may be justifiable in a production workshop where speed is important and it's cost will be put down to capital expenditure but in many other cases it could be compared to push fit plumbing fittings, ie they require less skill to achieve an end result that could be achieved another way. As mentioned by custard loose tenons have been around longer and the domino is not the magic tool that will always deliver on demand.
 

DBT85

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Why is speed not important at home? Why is a power tool that can do something faster and more repeatedly than other options somehow frowned upon when many of us have home workshops filled with routers, bandsaws, table saws, tracksaws, bench drills etc, many of which for many people cost more than a domino, they also all do specific jobs that save time and increase repeatability and accuracy.

No its not magic. None of it is.

So what if it requries less skill to achieve the result. I love flexing my grey matter but I'm also after results in a limited time frame. If it was all about the skill for me I'd do it all by hand. Then I'd be a real woodworker.
 

Spectric

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What is the rush at home, take your time and enjoy. To me the domino seems an expensive way to cut a mortice when a router can do the same but somewhat slower and I can cut long lengths of loose tenon on the table. If I had to do it all by hand then all I would make is sawdust and scrap, plus probably use a lot of plasters !
 

DBT85

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What is the rush at home, take your time and enjoy. To me the domino seems an expensive way to cut a mortice when a router can do the same but somewhat slower and I can cut long lengths of loose tenon on the table. If I had to do it all by hand then all I would make is sawdust and scrap, plus probably use a lot of plasters !
My time at home is more valuable to me than anything. I have to travel away from home for work and so for 12-14 days a month I'm not at home, not with my wife and my daughter and missing out as a result. It's work that pays well and I can do in my sleep (I broadcast the Premier League and other live sports all over the world), but being away from home both sucks and blows.

Sometimes I just need to get a project done and out the door so that I can move on to something more interesting, more exciting or maybe just next on the list. I have to maintain my own house as well as do maintenance on the holiday cottages we rent out and my in-laws house, that's before I get to make or create anything of interest, or be a dad, a husband, cook the dinner, etc.

Time is valuable and all power tools/machines are a really just a way of buying yourself more time by compressing how long it takes to do the same job you could do with a hand saw, hand plane, chisel, hand drill etc. What we can each justify to ourselves is always going to be different from person to person. Steve may have more room than Bruce so can justify a planer/thicknesser. But Bruce with less space actually only uses sheet material anyway so he buys a domino. Bruce is not doing it "properly" as after all it requires less skill than doing it another way. Meanwhile Steve is filling bag after bag of shavings with his enormous planer/thicknesser. Just seems odd that its only the domino that can illicit such a feeling in folk a full 13 years since its first release.

Sorry if it sounds like im having a go.
 
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Linwoodjoinery

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I went out to see one of the joiners that works for me in my full time job as contracts manager the other day. He was doing skirting. He is in his 60’s and ‘was doing it properly’ (his words not mine) by hand. That’s all well and good and he made a good job but it took him all day to do a small living room and a small entrance hall. So if a tool makes a job quicker and easier why not use it. Be it a chop saw or a domino
 

Phil Pascoe

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So what if it requries less skill to achieve the result. I love flexing my grey matter but I'm also after results in a limited time frame. If it was all about the skill for me I'd do it all by hand. Then I'd be a real woodworker.
Reminded me of school. One day I was starting a woodwork lesson and the master said what's the plan for today, then? I said I was going to get my mortices chopped out. I know you can chop them out perfectly well, he said, so don't waste your time - go down to the metalwork shop, make sure the pillar drill is clean and drill the waste out.
 

craigs

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Dear pigeons, look out for the incoming cat...

Lamello zeta P2 🤣🤣🤣
 

Droogs

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This is an argument that has raged on and on, probably, since some Jewish kid with a Hispanic name packed in his apprenticeship and decided to dropped out as he couldn't compete with that Roman git down the road with all the slaves and who did a bit of woodwork for fun with than new fangled block of wood thing with a bit of sword stuck in it and sold treen at the market on a tuesday.
Yeah, "Omnem apparatum cum ignorantiam" as they say.

There is no such thing as a real woodworker. Unless we only work in daylight or by oil lamp then we are all hybrid woodworkers. the only difference between someone who uses power tools in their workflow and those that don't is, to me, that some of us like things to be perfect to our eyes, some don't. It is all a matter of taste. Not in the workflow but in the final product.
Using machine means you get repeatable exactness and straightness all in all, true uniformity. For some that is great for other it is dull, inhuman and feel unnatural. Those who feel towards the second part tend to shy away from machines and embrace the imperfect that the human hand can so lovingly create.
 

pe2dave

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Why is speed not important at home? Why is a power tool that can do something faster and more repeatedly than other options somehow frowned upon when many of us have home workshops filled with routers, bandsaws, table saws, tracksaws, bench drills etc, many of which for many people cost more than a domino, they also all do specific jobs that save time and increase repeatability and accuracy.
What's that phrase? Your mileage may vary?
I like / enjoy working over the bench. I'll often use hand tools over machines, for the pleasure of getting it right by hand.
For me, that's why speed is not important. Woodwork is a real pleasure.
 

Spectric

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Hi

There is no such thing as a real woodworker.
Surely anyone making or using wood is a woodworker, even those who carve trees into sculptures. I am only interested in the end result but can appreciate handmade cabinets and furniture especially with fine cut dovetails because it is a skill I don't have and lack that level of finesse. For me whether I use dowels, barrel fasteners, loose tenons, a dovetail or an M&T does not matter because apart from the dovetail all the others look the same when finished. I suppose if you spent £700 on a domino to do say a kitchen then they do resale well, as for the Lamenello at £1000 that is clever but now a mechanical joint like using barrel fasteners so will that upset the purist? Again a great tool in a production workshop where time is money, but as mentioned some of us are torn between having to work long hours and fit the woodworking into the cracks so do not have the opportunity to relax and take time over a job, yes I can remember those days but once the mortgage is cleared that is a great feeling and takes any pressure off.
 

Droogs

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@Spectric You have missed my point entirely. The phrase "not real woodwork/woodworker" is thrown at those who use machines by those who don't a hell of a lot and is entirely wrong There is no such thing as "Real Woodworking" just woodworking. The method is down to the individuals personal choice taking in their situation. Prof/Pro-Am/Dabbler etc all have different constraints and considerations and these along with personal taste will dictate the manner of making and construction but they are all just woodworking. Each has it's own skills and abilities and liabilities and disadvantages.

What people forget on the whole is that for most of human history "The Craft" has not been a past-time frippery but a necessary occupation and therefore the equipment and techniques developed have been created with this in mind. So tools are made with the tradesman in mind and aim to help him get more done in less time at reduced overall cost. If a modern dabbler wants that tool and has the disposable to buy it and then use it great. They have taken the my time divided by the method of conducting my hobby and it has equaled buy that bit of kit.

No right or wrong in the situation as it is entirely subjective to that person. Just co'z it aint right for you does not make it wrong in any way at all.

Even though I have a big choice of machines I can use and I do use them, especially for stock prep, If I amdoing a lot more than a half doz of something I will usually do it using a powered tool. If less then quicker and more fun to do it by hand tool. Horses for courses. I don't have a domino btw but would if I could

edit typos
 

Spectric

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Hi

Yes thats probably because I spent so much of my time in software, everything was logical and so to me working with wood just meant a woodworker!

There will always be this difference in opinion in all walks of life, so there is a cult following of working in a bygone age before we had electricity and now I assume freindly banter between the two groups, as I said I am only interested in the end result and without electricity and machines I would have problems and so will not add any fuel to this debate, taking the Swiss approach.
 

LBCarpentry

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The domino isn't that wondrous. But it is a very clever collaboration of basic existing components in a very handy form.

Imagine if it was 1915 and the invention of the handheld router has just come on the scene! Imagine that debate!!
 

LBCarpentry

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Hi

Yes thats probably because I spent so much of my time in software, everything was logical and so to me working with wood just meant a woodworker!

There will always be this difference in opinion in all walks of life, so there is a cult following of working in a bygone age before we had electricity and now I assume freindly banter between the two groups, as I said I am only interested in the end result and without electricity and machines I would have problems and so will not add any fuel to this debate, taking the Swiss approach.
We have the same arguments about mountain biking vs Road biking. Disc brakes vs cantilever etc etc etc
 

Spectric

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Hi

What I find amazing is the ornate workmanship that was done in the big country houses and such, knowing it was done before routers and had to have been done with planes and chiesels. Just think of the actual physical effort let alone the skill that went into these jobs. On top of that they had to prepare all the timber by hand as well, so these days most people don't really know what a days work really is, even in my lifetime there has been so many changes. Road gangs have lifting quipment for kerbstones, no longer man handled into place, track gangs no longer carry lengths of rail and a personel lifting limit of 20Kg, we used to have 50Kg bags of cement and they wonder why there is so much obesity around.
 

DBT85

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track gangs no longer carry lengths of rail and a personel lifting limit of 20Kg, we used to have 50Kg bags of cement and they wonder why there is so much obesity around.
And chronic back and joint problems.

The domino isn't that wondrous. But it is a very clever collaboration of basic existing components in a very handy form.

Imagine if it was 1915 and the invention of the handheld router has just come on the scene! Imagine that debate!!
People would have been burned at the hand hewn stake!
 

Droogs

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The domino isn't that wondrous. But it is a very clever collaboration of basic existing components in a very handy form.

Imagine if it was 1915 and the invention of the handheld router has just come on the scene! Imagine that debate!!

Would have been a long past it's sell by date as the router was invented in 1884
 

RobinBHM

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loads for cutting in deadlocks & sash locks in doors
For off the shelf doors or ones you make?



I think there may be a 9 degree tenon jig in your workshop.....There's a smallish clue in the image :)
Is that for cutting an angled shoulder on jambs of door / windows?
 

Trevanion

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Imagine if it was 1915 and the invention of the handheld router has just come on the scene! Imagine that debate!!
Before you read any further, Nerd Alert! :ROFLMAO:

I imagine there wasn't much debate with Routers, one reason being that the majority of workshops wouldn't have had electrical power back then and the second reason even if they had power they probably didn't have the equipment to compress the air needed to make the early hand-held routers work (there were some that had electric motors but you can imagine how prohibitively expensive these would be in a world where light bulbs were very scarce).

A bit of story time...

I think the bigger debate was when the very first proper woodworking machinery was introduced in Britain back at the very tail-end of the 1700s. It came about when a Sir Jeremy Bentham who was a prison reformist and was looking for ways to make use of the prisoners for skilled Joinery work without years and years of training as an apprentice would need, Jeremy asked his brother Samuel Bentham for help in this regard. Samuel was a very experienced naval engineer and shipwright and spent many years in various countries in various shipyards and woodworking factories as a manager and commandant and so was perfect for the job at hand and he did not disappoint his brother, Samuel came up with the principle of rotary cutting which all modern planers, routers and moulders are still based on today and turned woodworking from a handcraft to an industrial powerhouse. Samuel Bentham is known as "The Father of Woodworking Machinery" because of his inventions in the field such as rotary cutting, machine veneer cutting, boring machines, segment circular saw blades, tenon cutters, and sharpening machines, of which he can be credited for. The early machines that Bentham made in the 1790s were of wooden construction with only the cutterblocks and bearings made from metal, the machines although very crude compared to modern standards were an instant success and turned unskilled prisoners into workers that were just as good or even better than the hand craftsmen of the time with a fraction of the training needed. Once the idea of woodworking machinery was proven in the prisons, it soon came to the shipyards of Britain. Of course, back then the hand craftsmen of old were saying the woodworking machinery would never replace a hand plane and chisel, but look at woodworking now.

At the turn of the century another man came along, Marc Isambard Brunel (Name sound familiar? It's the father of the legendary British Engineer Isambard Kingdom Brunel). Brunel mused over a dinner in New York about making ship blocks with machinery as a frigate would need 1500 blocks and each block would need to be made entirely by hand, when Brunel came back to England he came to be associated with Samuel Bentham and succeded in inventing several machines for making the blocks. It was said that the first attempt was so successful, 10 unskilled workers using the machinery replaced 100 skilled craftmen overnight. Goes to show that machinery has been taking people's jobs long before CNC machines came around!

I hope that was somewhat interesting to read.
 
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