Leigh D4R Dovetail Jig

Average reader rating
4.8
out of 5
Brand:
Leigh Industries
Model:
D4R
Price:
$550

Description

The new D4R-24 jig features a one piece aluminum extrusion base with machined-in non-marring textured clamping surfaces and machined-in side stops on the top and front of the jig body. The top-side stops have a 3/8" recess for rabbeted boards. The D4R easily produces handmade looking dovetail pins and tails. Perfect fitting joints for tiny boxes or large case pieces can be produced in a variety of patterns by simply changing the adjustable guide fingers. Wooden pieces are clamped into the jig quickly and easily with the cam action clamps which can be adjusted for different stock thickness or used to repeat the same clamp tension instantly. Through or half-blind dovetails can be easily set up by simply flipping the finger assembly over. Jigs are meticulously engineered and constructed. Accepts boards up to 24" wide. Maximum pin thickness 1.25". Includes three carbide router bits, a 1/2" D x 8 degree x 8mm dovetail bit and a 5/16" x 1" x 8mm straight bit for through dovetails, and a 1/2" D x 14 degree x 8mm dovetail bit for half-blind dovetails. Also included is a 1/2" to 8mm collet reducer, a 7/16" template guidebushing, a comprehensive instruction manual and instructional DVD.

Reader Reviews

The only dovetail jig you'll ever need

Review Summary

I don't like to hand-cut dovetails—there, I said it! So all you hand-tool nuts go sit in the corner and play with your hand-chiseled chips. I decided long ago that I liked cutting dovetails with a router, and I've used several jigs since. This is the best one by far. With it I can cut half-blinds, throughs, and box joints and know that once I get the jig and router set up, they'll be dead accurate.
I can't tell you how important that is when you're making a dozen drawers. And even though it might look intimidating, the Leigh manual walks you through each step in the process with clear instructions and fantastic pictures and drawings. It's got to be the best owner's manual I've ever read.

Detailed Ratings

4.8
out of 5

Performance

5

Features

5

Ease of Use

5

Value

4

Novice skills... Pro' results...

Review Summary

This is a complex tool that performs a variety of different tasks. It will make many different types of dovetails in a variety of different dimensions of wood. As a relative novice, it is a little intimidating. But as others have pointed out, the manual is very good. For me personally, I would rather have a tool beyond my skills that I can sort of grow into, than a simple one that I soon outgrow and want to replace with something more capable as my skills improve.
My skills are not sufficient to be able to cut dovetails by hand, and I'm not going to live long enough to develop that skill with the limited amount of shop time I have every week. I am enormously impressed by anyone who can do this, and envious of that skill. But with this machine, I can produce dovetails with a router that match the strength and appearance, and probably supersede the fit of any that I've seen done by hand, and certainly any that are going to be produced by my hands. The setup for either pins or tails can be a little tedious, and moreso if you are switching back and forth between pins and tails with the same router. But if you cut enough dovetails to spend several hundred on this jig, it might be worth considering a small simple router exclusively for pins and another for tails. Not much horsepower is needed for either, so the cheaper ones will do. I stumbled onto an auction where I was able to buy a box of 6 old routers for about 150$. All they needed were new bearings. I put the pin bit in one, the tail bit in another one and after getting them set to the 1/2 stock I use for drawers, I can pick them up and make dovetails with essentially zero set up time. Tight fitting dovetails are historically the mark of the professionals. But with this jig I can get those results even as a relative novice.

Detailed Ratings

4.8
out of 5

Performance

5

Features

5

Ease of Use

5

Value

4

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