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Author Topic: Mortising tool options and availability for mere mortals.  (Read 1475 times)

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Offline skatefriday

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Mortising tool options and availability for mere mortals.
« on: April 10, 2023, 03:47:07 PM »

I'm planning on building a modified Sobon shed, 10x12 with two bents instead of three, and have  been reading Will Beemer's book wherein he talks specifically about mortising tools and suggests that the best option for a new builder is an antique boring machine in which he says quote, "A good boring machine can be had for $200 to $700 from of the antique tool dealers mention in the Resources section."

The book was published in 2016, but Jim's machines are currently listed at $1050 to $1200.   I understand that there are a finite supply of these machines and that as more people read these books and watch youtube (social media ruins everything. :-)), and want to cut timber, you have classic supply and demand pressures, pushing prices up, but wow are they expensive.

I haven't been able to find any T-augers.  I'm considering a right angle low rpm drill with a clutch, but those aren't necessarily cheap either and I am concerned about accuracy and kickback.

So what are the alternatives?

Chisel?  I presume you can hog out a mortise with a chisel alone, although if not careful I presume you'd spend a lot of time regrinding your bevel.  I think traditionally chisels were used exclusively for mortising in Japanese framing.  Witness their square pegs as evidence.

Router?  Is there any reason a plunge router is a bad idea?  I already have a nice Bosch plunge router with the router guide attachment.  The attachment would make positioning off a reference face convenient.  CMT makes an 1 1/4" with 2 1/2" long shank mortising bit.  They also make a chuck extension that gives you about another 2".  That won't get you quite the deepest blind mortise in the book, but for the deepest through mortises you should be able to turn the piece over, which is what is recommended anyway to avoid tearout.










Offline Jim_Rogers

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Re: Mortising tool options and availability for mere mortals.
« Reply #1 on: April 10, 2023, 06:08:15 PM »
Sometimes we have boring machine under $400. Just not now.
If you want one in that price range, let me know in a private message, and we'll hold one for you before it gets listed on the for-sale list.

Another option is to use a drill stand. 

Check out this story about a beginner using one:

Drill guide issues in Timber Framing/Log construction (forestryforum.com)

Jim Rogers
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Offline skatefriday

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Re: Mortising tool options and availability for mere mortals.
« Reply #2 on: April 10, 2023, 07:45:01 PM »
lol figures Rockler, a.k.a.  The Jig Store, would sell something like that.

What bit do you think would work best in it?  The distance from the chuck tip to the bottom of the base is 9-5/16".  I don't plan to work any material larger than an 8x8.  Would the 7-1/2" Wood Owl Tri Cut bit mentioned in the other thread be a good choice?


 

Offline Jim_Rogers

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Re: Mortising tool options and availability for mere mortals.
« Reply #3 on: April 10, 2023, 07:52:23 PM »
Yes, whatever bit fits.

Jim Rogers
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Offline EtOtw

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Re: Mortising tool options and availability for mere mortals.
« Reply #4 on: May 07, 2023, 12:50:13 AM »
I mean the actual mortise and tenon I've managed small ones with sawsalls circular saws I could see useing a small 14 12 inch chainsaw the peg hole big drill auger bit lots of reverse to clear the bit they also had these like tubes with sharp end ya use a sledgehammer on I think never used one be down o axe helps to 

Offline Zgin

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Re: Mortising tool options and availability for mere mortals.
« Reply #5 on: May 07, 2023, 06:35:54 AM »
This B&D with greenlee ez bore spur bits has drilled thousands of holes for hundreds of mortises. Its got a lot of torque and wont stop so you have hold on tight. After

 

  2 the chips must be cleared from the hole and restart. If I tried to hog my first mortise with only a chisel on an 8x8 I would have found another hobby.

Offline DBoyle

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Re: Mortising tool options and availability for mere mortals.
« Reply #6 on: May 07, 2023, 10:57:01 AM »
I bought a makita chain mortiser a few years back. It's a great machine. Might be able to pick one up second hand for not a huge amount. If there's any chance you'll make more than one frame, then i would highly recommend. Jim has info on YouTube with some tips for using these. I think it might even be a makita but could be wrong.

Offline Dan_Shade

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Re: Mortising tool options and availability for mere mortals.
« Reply #7 on: September 04, 2023, 02:44:16 PM »
Building ORCA - Episode 10: Installing the Stern Post - YouTube

@

At 4:12, he starts the process he uses to cut a mortise with a chainsaw.
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lots of dull bands and chains

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Offline Lennyzx11

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Re: Mortising tool options and availability for mere mortals.
« Reply #8 on: September 05, 2023, 06:00:52 AM »
Im no expert and have never bored any mortises out with a bit.I have near broke my wrist a couple times drilling through the old beams in my farmhouse floor beams though.

I bought a Makita chain mortiser from first owner and think its the best way. Professionals can chime in.
I just bought a Mafell BST drilling station in same situation. First owner was done with his project.

Point is. The idea of buying good used (though expensive) for the project and reselling down the road when done(I keep saying Ill sell them but its a pleasure using pro grade tools!) has worked well for me.
Southwest corner of Vermont

Offline Dakota

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Re: Mortising tool options and availability for mere mortals.
« Reply #9 on: September 05, 2023, 08:56:03 AM »
I bought a Makita mortising machine brand new, built my frame, and sold it a year later for $200 more than I paid for it.  Just an idea.
Dave Rinker

Offline Joe Hillmann

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Re: Mortising tool options and availability for mere mortals.
« Reply #10 on: September 05, 2023, 08:56:38 AM »
You can buy a table top sized drill press for a couple hundred bucks.

Assemble the head, post and then put the table on upside down.  Leave the base/foot off entirely.

Then you can clamp or bolt the table to the beam then drill through the table into the beam below.

This will only work if the hole in the table is bigger than the bit you are using.

A good forstner bit will be able to cut overlapping holes as long as the center of the bit is in good wood.

Offline mudfarmer

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Re: Mortising tool options and availability for mere mortals.
« Reply #11 on: September 13, 2023, 09:47:00 PM »
Better advice in the thread already but there is at least one thread on here about mortising with chainsaws, will try to dig up later if I remember. Going in person to auctions was how I picked up a good deal hand boring machine, was not able to afford the first couple of dozen though. Sounds like Jim has you covered!


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