I am no master craftsman; I consider myself barely competent, and yet I learned to cut dovetails like these after taking several sessions of a class.
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So something that's been puzzling me is why, on antique furniture, are dovetails that were made by master craftsmen often so sloppy?
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I've heard the theory that joiners/cabinetmakers were simply in a rush and didn't care how they looked, but something about that always nagged at me. Here Richard Maguire, a/k/a The English Woodworker, provides an alternate theory that I find compelling:
It makes perfect sense to me. The craftsmen of centuries past did not have access to finely-made tools like the kick-ass dovetailing saw I use; the manufacturing of the time simply wasn't as dialed in as we've got it now.
I posted this video to a woodworking group on Facebook--and while some agreed with it, I also got instant push-back. "There is no documented or physical evidence to support this theory," one commenter wrote. But isn't the Industrial Revolution, and the constant improvement in tool-building over what people were stuck with before, the evidence itself?