previous
  • 7 Trim Carpentry Secrets
    7 Trim Carpentry Secrets
  • Master Carpenter Videos
    Master Carpenter Videos
  • Clever daily tip in your inbox
    Clever daily tip in your inbox
  • All about Roofing
    All about Roofing
  • Design Inspiration
    Design Inspiration
  • Magazine Departments
    Magazine Departments
  • Remodeling Articles
    Remodeling Articles
  • 9 Concrete Countertops Ideas
    9 Concrete Countertops Ideas
  • Energy-Smart Details
    Energy-Smart Details
  • Video Series: Tile a Bathroom
    Video Series: Tile a Bathroom
  • Tips & Techniques for Painting
    Tips & Techniques for Painting
  • Read FHB on Your iPad
    Read FHB on Your iPad
  • Radiant Heat Comparison
    Radiant Heat Comparison
  • 7 Smart Kitchen Solutions
    7 Smart Kitchen Solutions
  • 7 Small Bathroom Layouts
    7 Small Bathroom Layouts
  • Video: Install a Fence
    Video: Install a Fence
  • Basement Remodeling Tips
    Basement Remodeling Tips
next
Pin It

The Essential Timber-Frame Joint

Learn from a veteran framer's technique for making large pegged mortises and tenons

For this edition of "Master Carpenter," builder and educator Will Beemer shows how to create a classic timber-frame joint, a large pegged mortise and tenon. Beemer begins the process by establishing a level work surface. Because timbers can be so large, it might be necessary to work on sawhorses with shorter legs. It's also important to find the arris, or the intersection of the two sides of the timber that are square to each other. This becomes a key reference point. Cutting a tenon always begins with the shoulder and should be cut carefully. Next, cut the housing and the mortise. To finish, draw the joint tight with an offset peg. This article includes a number of sidebars, including one about a special tool of the trade that helps timber-framers to cut plumb holes using a mirror; a trick of the trade describing a process known as the French snap; and a brief guide about how to deal with timbers that are not perfectly milled and uniform.

The Essential Timber-Frame Joint
Plus get a free gift
Become a Fine Homebuilding Member and get 3 months free. Offer ends 1/30/15 Start your free trial now