Hand Cut Dovetails

Mastering Hand Cut Dovetails

Presented by Simeon Dux


Most people, I’m sure would feel that hand cut dovetails are a daunting prospect and way beyond their skill level. Yet hand cut dovetails still represent around the world a standard of excellence that is easy to recognize by everyone. Mortice and tenons and dovetails have always been the most common form of joinery for every piece of furniture.

In this class you will learn how to cut three groups of dovetails with accuracy and confidence. The ‘through dovetail’ is usually used to join traditional carcasses & boxes and often seen at the back of a drawer. The ‘half blind dovetail’ is also usually seen in box making & traditional carcasses and is often seen at the front of a drawer. Lastly, the ‘through dovetail’ with a mitred front edge is also often seen in slightly fancier boxes and cabinets.

You will be taught an easy to follow process that with practice, guarantees perfect dovetails every time. We will discuss the most appropriate uses of these types of dovetails in many types of furniture. Time permitting, we will also endeavour to produce a small dovetailed box from an appropriate timber such as American Poplar.

We guarantee that you will come away from the class with all the skills required to master the hand cut dovetail!

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What you will learn

  • You'll learn to cut 3 types of dovetails - through dovetails, half blind dovetails & through dovetails with a mitred front edge
  • Learn to cut them with accuracy & confidence
  • You'll be taught an easy to follow process that produces perfect dovetails every time!

What you will get

  • Students will take home a small dovetailed box.

What to bring

  • All materials included.

What to wear

Comfortable clothing

Appropriate for

From Beginners to Advance students

The Melbourne Guild of Fine Woodworking was founded by Alastair Boell in 2007. After graduating from the world renowned North Bennet Street School, Boston (USA) Alastair felt that there was a great need in Australia for an educational facility that focuses on traditional skills.

The Guild is committed to preserving and advancing craft traditions in furniture making. We are also committed to promoting a greater awareness and appreciation ofcraftsmanship. In our classes we emphasize the skillful use of hand tools and power equipment and an informed use of appropriate materials. We are passionate about what we do and want to share information, ideas and skills with all our students young and old, from beginner to advanced.

The Guild offers 13 Open Courses a week where students are able to bring in their own projects. Also during the year on a regular basis we offer a number of short intensive classes on varying woodworking topics. Our student to teacher ratios are very low with a maximum of 8 students in the open classes.

The school itself is conveniently located two minutes from the Blackburn Rd exit off the Eastern Freeway. Parking is readily available right at the school’s door.We promise to do our very best to provide you with endless opportunities in a stimulating and supportive community.

We invite you to take your place at the Melbourne Guild of Fine Woodworking.

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Melbourne Guild of Fine Woodworking has an average rating of 4.5 for their other classes.

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Refund Policy

Melbourne Guild of Fine Woodworking requires 1 month's notice via email prior to the start of a class or event for a full refund or transfer.  

Refunds and transfers will not be processed if cancellation occurs within 1 month of the event commencing, unless we are able to replace the booking. We do not offer refunds for missed classes. There are no fees for refunds or transfers. For cancellations prior to the 1 month cut off, email Melbourne Guild of Fine Woodworking to organise a refund or transfer

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Terms & Conditions

Anyone partaking in any classes or coming to any events at Melbourne Guild of Fine Woodworking or organised by Melbourne Guild of Fine Woodworking must agree to these terms and conditions.


I agree to take on full responsibility for any damages, injuries and for physical and/or personal property, which I might incur whilst participating in classes and/or events organised by Melbourne Guild of Fine Woodworking.


I agree to give Melbourne Guild of Fine Woodworking unrestricted publishing rights for any photographs or videos taken at Melbourne Guild of Fine Woodworking classes and events or on Melbourne Guild of Fine Woodworking's premises. (For use of Melbourne Guild of Fine Woodworking marketing materials).


Melbourne Guild of Fine Woodworking requires 48 hours notice in writing prior to the class for a full refund or transfer. 


In the event that a class is cancelled, students will be notified via text message or email and entitled to a full refund or credit.

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