Getting Rid of Sharp Corners

patlaw

Mike
Corporate Member
Today was an interesting day in my "shop". I've had the Jessem 08350 doweling jig for quite a while. The results I've gotten from it were not very good. Things just didn't line up like they should. The indexing system on the jig leaves a lot to be desired for some sizes of wood, such as 1x2s. So I put on the thinking cap and made up my mind to figure out what I was doing wrong. It turns out that I wasn't doing anything wrong. I threw the manual way (figuratively) and came up with some new ways to index boards to be doweled. The results were (eventually) excellent. I built the play tower in the picture below for my granddaughter, and there was not a bad joint in the lot. Every joint is doweled. So that was good.

Now my problem is what to do with the sharp edges on the boards. For example, look at the joint at the blue arrow. Both the horizontal and the vertical boards are 1x2s. If I round over the sharp corners on the vertical board, there will be a gap where the horizontal board is joined to the vertical board. Plus, how should I round over the edges? A router? What about using the shaft of a round screwdriver? The wood is pine. I'm open for suggestions.

Little Helper Tower 07.jpg
 

McRabbet

Rob
Corporate Member
Hand-held trim router with 1/8" to 1/4" round over bit after unit is assembled and there won't be gaps at the joints.
 

patlaw

Mike
Corporate Member
Hand-held trim router with 1/8" to 1/4" round over bit after unit is assembled and there won't be gaps at the joints.
Well, that makes a lot of sense. Sometimes the most obvious solution is staring you in the face.

If I build another one, which I probably will, the vertical pieces will be 2x2s with very nice rounded-over edges since the horizonal pieces will be offset to approximately the center of the 2x2s.

Thanks for the suggestion!
 

patlaw

Mike
Corporate Member
If you just want to " break" the sharp edge, I have found the Fast cap dual edge sander works very well with a couple of light passes with a fine grit sandpaper.

Amazon.com

It should permit you to get very close to the joint intersection.
Ordered. It will be here Monday. Thanks.
 

redknife

Chris
Corporate Member
For more aggressive softening of edge, I’ll use a small block plane, stopping at a uniform stop before the joint. To just break the sharpness, I use sandpaper, again stopping short of the joint. If eyeballing the uniformity of break/no break line throughout the piece is difficult, use a pencil mark or blue painters tape.
 

patlaw

Mike
Corporate Member
Mike, this is exactly how I would do it. The key being "after" assembly.
I just tried it again, and I don't like the look, if I'm doing it correctly or using the right bit. The roundover flare disappears next to the joint because the bearing can't get into the corner. Maybe that's the way it's supposed to be and I never noticed.

It's frustrating. Once I figured out ways to use the doweling jig, my speed picked up tremendously, and the joints are (for me) excellent. The smallest things can be the trickiest.
 
Last edited:

bowman

Board of Directors, Events Director
Neal
Staff member
Corporate Member
you may have to chisel/file/sand to continue the profile into the corners
 

mpeele

michael
User
I have a 1/16" round over I have used but a few strokes with 80 to 100 grit sand paper will knock the sharp off just a well and there is no possibility of burning as with router.
 

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