Hope chest – half-lap dovetails

I was truly busy today working with my students but I took half an hour out to cut the half lap dovetails to my Hope Chest drawer. With mahogany as my secondary wood and oak for the drawer front there is enough contrast to make the joint vivid and attractive.

My drawer front has a raised edge that matches the raised panels. The crispness of the dovetails is critical to good presentation and the aspect ratio is important between the two woods. On Monday I can run the grooves for the drawer bottom and form the special housing dado with through tenons to secure the drawer back to the sides.

I love to hand cut any kind of dovetail joint but half laps are especially lovely to make.  I will  be posting a video soon on how to make a half-lap dovetail shortly.


  1. Jim Barrett on 4 December 2011 at 1:00 am

    Looking forward to the follow up video…love working with dt’s!

  2. Paul Sellers on 4 December 2011 at 9:20 pm

    We will soon have them ready. Just takes a little time to prep everything, but thanks for watching and passing on the good news.
    Best regards,