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Common Woodworking Joints


There are many kinds of wood joints you can use while working with this natural material. Each kind of joint has a history and use all its own and certain join types work better in certain cases. If you’re new to woodworking and need to make complex structures, here are some wood joints you should learn about.


Biscuit Joint

This kind of joint is best used for wood plants stuck together end-to-end. There is a slim, oval piece, called a biscuit, which is placed into slots on either piece and supplemented with glue. While the glue sets, a clamp is used to keep everything in place.


Dado Joint

This kind of joint is best used for where wood pieces meet perpendicularly. One piece of wood is cut on the surface so the other can be placed in that slot. Bookshelves and other shelving projects are the most common woodworking pieces with dado joints.


Rabbet Joint

Drawers and cabinets commonly have this kind of joint. A step-like groove is carved on one side of a piece of wood and the edge of another is placed inside. Instead of glue, this joint is strengthened with wood screws, nails or dowels.


Tongue-and-Groove Joint

This kind of joint is used in situations similar to a biscuit joint. Unlike a biscuit, one piece of wood has a piece extending outward that goes into the other. Some glue strengthens the joint.


Mortise and Tenon Joint

This kind of joint works best for pieces joined on an angle. It is similar to tongue-and-groove in that an extended piece juts from one side and is inserted into the other.


Joints are an important part of milling and woodworking. Where two pieces of wood meet, some care needs to be taken that they don’t come apart. Whether this is with a complex joint or some glue depends on what you’re using this piece for.