Oak Breakfront Bookcase

I've been trimming the dovetails by hand on the top and bottom boards for each of the six cases that make up this bookcase. Working with 3/4 inch oak is tough on my chisels so I keep my sharpening stones at hand to touch them up when needed. Since these are carcass dovetails, the pins ( the connecting piece to the dovetails) are fairly beefy. None of this joinery will be seen in the final piece but the joinery is structural and done in the same manner as an 18th century piece. It's important to me that design of the construction (interior) is consistent with the design of the exterior. I'll include some images of trimming the tails as well as some images that relate to my last post.


Some of the twelve boards with the tails cut but still needing the waste material for the pins to be removed. 


My 1/2 scale drawing showing a partial view of the front on the left and a side view on the right. 


A lower side frame and panel assembly of nicely figured quarter sawn oak. 


The inside of the panel is flush with the frame so that books will easily slide in and out of the bookcase. 


Sharpening stones, honing oil and strop all at hand to touch up chisels as I work. 


Trimming to scribed line established by my cutting gauge. 


Trimmed tails on top and untrimmed tails on the bench surface. 


I've included an image from one of the great Charles Hayward's books showing an easy way to divide a board for pins and tails . The various cases that make up this bookcase vary in width. In an effort to find a pleasing division of pins and tails I always use this technique. It's much easier than say, dividing 18 7/8" by 7. I think that the illustration above has the tails and pins too similar in size. The tails should be wider in my opinion but the principle is the same.