Idea Shop 6, Paycheck 8: Of All the Wood Joints in All the World
With the previous paycheck, you dipped into the savings to purchase a router. Most of this check will replenish the bank, with the exception of about $20 spent on a mortising router bit.
With this bit in your router, and a simple jig, you can create dadoes and grooves that fit mating parts such as a cabinet top, shelf, or divider. This creates a mechanical woodworking joint where the wood interlocks. Dadoes and grooves position and secure mating parts. Sizing the dado or groove for a snug fit provides good glue surface on three sides: the bottom of the dado or groove and both shoulders, adding more strength than a glue-and-screw joint, such as those used to build the router table.
The jig couldn't be simpler, but make sure you build it accurately, getting the fences perfectly square to the edges of the guides. Watch how the jig and bit work together to cut perfectly sized dadoes and grooves in the video below.
With your current selection of tools, and the guidance we've provided here and in the linked online articles, you could start building projects. Really! Here are four project plans you can build using the tools you have now. Keep in mind that the plans and materials for the projects will cost money, so weigh those expenses against the budget for building your shop.
Gradually, and steadily, the nest egg grows, so by paycheck 10, it should cover the cost of a tablesaw. Then, as you build jigs for it, your woodworking skills will really take off. Watch the video below of Idea Shop 6 growing from empty garage stall through Paycheck 8. And then get ready for Paycheck 9.