Some day all home woodies will cut their tenons this way!
by Steve Maskery

Published by Steve Maskery

As reviewed in The Australian Woodworker Issue 144

This is another video in Steve Maskery’s Workshop Essentials series.

Steve Maskery is a highly innovative woodworker who has experimented with a host of jigs and fixtures so as to design aids that would be valuable additions to any workshop.

As well as being extremely useful, Maskery’s innovations have the advantage of being able to be made by woodworkers with no more than average skills, tools and equipment.

The Ultimate Tablesaw Tenon Jig and its accompanying Crosscut Sled are no exceptions.

The Jig is made principally from MDF. It consists of two parts, a lower base or carrier that rides along the rip fence of the tablesaw and an upper base that mates with the lower by way of diagonal keyways, all made from wood. It should probably be mentioned that it may take a little research to find two or three of the items required (such as the T bolt, Bristol levers and even, perhaps, the nylon bolts) but this is unlikely to prove too difficult.

As Maskery demonstrates, the actual construction work is relatively easy, yet it is possible to obtain an operating precision within a couple of hundredths of a millimetre.

The video starts with demonstrations of the Tablesaw Tenon Jig and Crosscut Sled. The workpiece is held vertically so that its length is only limited by the distance to the ceiling of the workshop. This method of cutting tenons is not uncommon. Among the differences introduced by Maskery are built-in multiple guards to replace the normal tablesaw guard (which must be removed) and a system that allows the Jig to be positioned accurately and repeatably for each size of timber used.

The Jig works quickly since each cheek is formed by a single pass over the saw. The tenon shoulders are then cut with the Crosscut Sled.

When using either the Tenon Jig or (particularly) the Crosscut Sled, safety is considerably improved by a Stand Alone guard for which instructions are also provided.

The Ultimate Tablesaw Tenon Jig is easy to adjust to various size tenons using a series of previously prepared spacers.

A fine adjustment is available that permits precise adjustment of the tenon position on the workpiece.

Instructions for the making of the Tenon Jig and its Crosscut Sled occupy the majority of the video, but time is also given to the making of mortises on a drill press and the way in which the Jigs may be employed for making double as well as angled tenons and splined corner mitre joints.

The versatility of the Jig is illustrated by showing how a very simple add-on allows it to be used to make two cuts in the end of a workpiece preparatory to making a broad comb joint.

Steve Maskery is an entertaining and enthusiastic presenter, the video is well lit and the camera angles show each operation clearly.

The audio is very good, though there was one point at which Steve’s accent defeated this reviewer. Reference was being made to a housing and a comment was added that included the word dado – obviously a reference to the American term. The phrase, for those who may have similar difficulty and may not immediately recognise Pond as meaning the Atlantic Ocean, is: or dado, if you’re from over the Pond.

The video presentation is supported by several PDF files on the disk. One contains a text document describing the Ultimate Tenon Saw Jig, two hold dimensioned drawings for the Jig and Crosscut Sled while another describes construction of the Stand-alone Guard.

Duration: 64min

DVD – English – PAL


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