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Coyote Jim

Joinery Question

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I have a fairly simple build. I am building a monitor riser for my desk at work. I have not figured out final dimensions yet but it will be in the neighborhood of 48" left to right, 10" front to back and stand about 3-4" tall. The top is all one board that I have already milled, because I had trouble getting that board flat it is only 5/8" thick. Should be more than fine to hold a couple of monitors.

I did an extremely poor drawing of it:

IMG_20190130_153041.thumb.jpg.3b85a2422889a367b091fed515db6be1.jpg

I'm wondering what the best way to attache the two "dividers" to the underside of the top. See the arrows above. I think that a sliding dovetail would be super overkill. Would a dado be overkill? If I orient the grain the same direction as the top would dowels be fine? These dividers will not be seen from the front side of the desk, I plan on this having a face (is that what you would call it?) so that I can hide all my messy papers under the riser and not have them seen from the front.

I'm probably overthinking it but does anyone have any suggestions for me?

And by the way, is it strange that I found flattening this 10.5" wide board to be super fun? 

IMG_20190126_172127.thumb.jpg.3966c8a22983c5c41e350ba603cdd453.jpg

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I would simply  just dado it. Just because I have never liked dowels. A biscuit joiner would work to. Looking at your sketch with the miters at the ends the two middle boards would holding all the weight. Granted your not talking much weight but I’ve never trust miter for strength even when reinforced with splines. 

 

No it’s not strange it’s a skill that once you get it down the joy is always there. 

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Agree on the dado, if nothing else it will make alignment easier. Miter joints are fairly strong, but if you are worried, splines or dowels will give you a little more strength. And not strange at all!

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6 hours ago, Coyote Jim said:

And by the way, is it strange that I found flattening this 10.5" wide board to be super fun?

Be very, very careful . . . you are at a critical point in your life.  One false step and you could have a dozen hand planes, shaves and saws before you can stop yourself!!!

To your original question, I too would go for dados.

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I especially like dados here because if they go all the way through, they can be cut simultaneously by just flipping the board.

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I like sliding dovetails.   Slightly more elegant than dados, not much more difficult.  Granted, dados are a close second.

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I will be the umpteenth vote for dados on this one. Plus your little divider guys will act like cleats to keep the top flat. Of course if you're worried about that at all, I do wonder if sliding dovetails wouldn't have more mechanical strength from a cleat standpoint. I'm not sure though. 

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I will be the odd ball opinion here... assuming that the joint will be flat grain to flat grain, consider just glueing it.  There is no load on the joints.

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If I understood correctly, your supports will have the grain running the same direction as the top. This means that the supports will have vertical grain. This is good as you would otherwise have a cross grain situation which might cause splitting. Your top piece is getting rather thin to be cutting a dado. However, if you cut it shallow and glue in your support pieces, you should be OK.

Especially since your supports won't be seen from the front (and even if they were), I think I would consider using 4 approx. 3/4" dowels for support legs glued into holes about 1" from the front and back edges. simple and quick and should provide enough support.

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Splines would make a decent joint as well.  And they can be inset in the dado, if your worried about the connection.

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