Best dovetail jigs for router table

Dovetail jig is a necessary tool for the craftmanship in an woodworking project. The jigs ensure the accuracy and powerful dovetail joints.

Our Top Dovetail Jigs for router table

We have worked on total 28 dovetail jigs but, these are the top products suitable for router table

Porter – Cable ProPorter – Cable 12 ichWoodstock 12 inch
Poretr-Cable-Dovetail-Jigporter-cable-dovetail-jigwoodstock-dovetail-jigs
Includes mini template kiteexcludes mini template kiteexcludes mini template kite
4211, 4213, 42154211 half-blind only4211 half-blind only
Weighs 26.8 PoundsWeighs 20 PoundsWeighs 20 Pounds
Read Full ReviewRead Full ReviewRead Full Review
These are the top dovetail jigs but more reviews are there for you

The first one is the Porter-Cable’s super jig with multiple kits and manual. Such variety of template help making so many types of joint. Porter cable 12 inch and the Woodstock version does only the 4211 half blind joints. Let us discuss in-depth one by one!

Porter Cable dovetail jig with template kits review

Porter-cable is one of the best dovetail jig sellers among the other brands. This super kit jig set comes with various templates such as 4213 and 4215 in addition to 4211. As we know that 4211 is for the half-blind and sliding dovetails, 4213 for box joints and through dovetail and 4215 helps in the miniature box joints. Overall this is a good dovetail kit set for both beginner and advanced woodworkers.

here’s how it looks like

porters-cable-dovetail-jigs

Positive Sides

  • This dovetail jig includes four router bits
  • Includes guide rings for both the half and quarter inch. Just make sure your router has the same sized hole at the base
  • WOrks with almost all types of router
  • Ready for easy installation
  • Maximum cutting accuracy
  • You can set your bit depth without even measuring
  • Heavy-duty equipment
  • Almost no customers complaints
  • The store offers 9 different templates while checking out
  • This dovetail jig’s cam clamps are really very heavy to support the woodworking activities
  • Excellent grip while working
  • Instrcution manual provides absolute guideline, which is very helpful
  • The manufacturer offers a a free annual maintanance contract for up to one year
  • Its powerful and good choice as a value for money option
  • As of today – the manufacturer offers 90 days mone back assurance and three years warrenty support airisen from manufacturing defects.

Negative Sides

  • Router bits do not include half an inch and quarter inch straight bits for making the joints. If oyu have those then its okay, if you don’t have then order along with the dovetail jig
  • It might not work with your existing trim router. You need a router with half inch shank.
  • It does not come with collets rather there will be four router bits
  • You cannot route on a board that is more than 12 inches.

Comparison with similar dovetail jigs from Porter Cable

Here’s a list of other dovetail dovetail jigs offered by Porter-Cable.

ModelPorter Cable 4216Porter Cable 4210Porter Cable 4212
No. of templateThreeoneTwo
Template Types(4211, 4213 and 4215)(4211)(4211 and 4213)
12 inches jig baseYesNoNo
Four router bitsYesNoNo
ManualYesYesNo
Lock NutsTwoOneNil
WrenchYesNoNo
Warranty3 Years1 Year1 Year
Check PriceCheck PriceCheck Price

Porter Cable 4210 Review – The easiest dovetail jigs to use

Porter Cable 4210 dovetail jigs comes with 4211 template for sliding and half blind dovetails but does not include any other templates like Porter-Cable 4216 model. In our opinion this is the most easiest dovetail jigs to use for the beginners.

porter-cable-dovetail-jig

What we liked about porter cable 4210

  • Heavy-duty dovetail jig
  • It is the only dovetail jigs model that does the blind cut
  • Very easy to install and operate due ty having router bit depth gauges
  • Allows up to 12 inches of stock width
  • Suitable for making cabinets and drawers
  • Avoids the use of wood glue
  • Constructs durable products
  • It’s very handy
  • Its router bit is half inch shank
  • Fits almost with every router, but fits best with BOSCH

Negative issues with porter cable 4210

  • 1/4 inch router bit is not included with the product, you need to order additionally. However, a quarter inch is included on Woodstock.
  • Comes with only one template. 4213 and 4215 are only available with Porter-Cable 4216 model
  • Warranty is only one year but the earlier one (4216 model) offers three years of warranty for any causes arisen from manufacturing defaults
  • Offset-gauge seems inaccurate to some extent by leaving a top and bottom edges. However, this issue is not common.
  • You have to ensure a solid stop since the box will move and you cannot make heavy pressure
  • This is not a complete kit
Working with Porter-Cable dovetail jig

Woodstock Review – Dovetail jigs with aluminum template

Woodstock is a very good dovetail jig after the Porter-Cable. It has the all standard kit and rectifies some qualitative issues that are considered weaknesses of Porter-Cable’s jigs.

woodstock-dovetail-jigs

Positive sides

  • Woodstock dovetail jig comes with a unique clamping system that immediately locks two boards for better joint
  • After locking the board with a clamp, you have the flexibility to cut tails and pins without unlocking the clamp
  • Includes half-inch aluminium template
  • That means you can make half-blind dovetails easily
  • Efficiently handles from a quarter-inch to half-inch thick stocks
  • Woodstock also comes with a dovetail router bit of a half inches, fourteen degrees along with a quarter-inch shank.
  • Make a full dovetail joint with the same bit.

Negative sides

  • Woodstock dovetail jig does not come with a full kit like Porter-Cable.
  • It has a plastic base

Bottom-line

This is an inexpensive dovetail jig offers almost all tasks of joint making for beginners. This particular model does not limit your ability to expand the woodworking expertise by allowing to choose between a half-inch and a quarter-inch thick metal. Its stable and the clamp lock helps enjoying the work at most. Surely it is the best alternative to Porter Cable 4210.

Leigh 18 Inches dovetail jig review

As we have experienced that most of the dovetail jig is 12 inches max with a 1/2 or 1/4 thick metal. Leigh is one of the dovetail manufacturers that offers an 18 inches width. Due to the quality LEIGH has been maintaining for so long years price seems to be high. Here’s how Leigh looks like

Leigh-dovetail-jig

Positive sides

  • 18 inches of width
  • Suitable when multiple woodworking projects are going on
  • Offers a set of a complete kit
  • Made up of solid aluminium and steel and no plastic is used like Woodstock
  • It was first available on the market in 2010 and did not messed up with anything like bad review
  • Comes with two router bits
  • It’s lightweight. Almost 7 lbs lower than the one from Porter-Cable

Negative sides

  • It’s expensive
  • Not really easy to use like Porter-Cable
  • The package does not include a wrench
  • The clamping bar is not heavy like the one from Porter-Cable

Two Step low budget dovetail jig from General Tools

We have seen that the dovetail jigs are often expensive. But this jig from general tool comes under USD 50 with that serves the initial requirements of dovetail joints.

dovetail-jig

General tools are offering this two step dovetail jig at a very good budget. It may not be as good as Porter-Cable but you can do the woodworking tasks easily if you know how to do that.

What really admired us is its self aligning technique. It ensures that both end of the workpiece is in same line so that your dovetails becomes accurate. However, this jog do not comes with an extra kit so many customizable facility.

You are going a receive a half inch dovetail router bit along with this jig but no other extra lock pins, wrench and templates.

Its a 14 degree bit and therefore working with 10 degrees or 8 degrees might not be the best choice for you.

Another interesting part of this jig is it can make a dovetail of 3/4 inch with the same set comes initially.

The big disadvantages of this tool is its CLAMPING GAP. You would require extra clamp to maintain desired stability.

Apart from this negative side, overall this is a best budget dovetail jig from General tools.

Consider these before buying a dovetail jig

Buying a dovetail jig can be an easy task for an experienced woodworker but, it can be very complex for beginners. There are plenty of issues such as thickness of the clump, whats included in the box, which template do I need and lots of other issues.

Our in-depth guide will help you to decide the best product for you.

Types of the dovetail jigs

There are two types of dovetail jigs available in the market. Fixed and variable.

In a fixed dovetail jig, you need to switch the template in between to make different types of joint. May be the fixed template version is not that much versatile than the other of variable but, our experts say that it is comparably easier to operate.

A variable dovetail jig will allow to choose the position of fingers to make your own template. This is versatile and literally infinitely variable to those who know how to work with that!.

dovetail-jig

Different Joint types

Woodworking is prestigious when you can make a tighter joint between the timbers. There are some joints that require different dovetail jigs.

When two wood piece are joined by the an angle at 90 degree we call it a Miter Joint. Usually you do not need a dovetail jig for the Miter Joint.

However, when one wood is joined beside the other with a 90 degree shape in straight line, we call it a Butt Joint. Such joint type does not require a dovetail as well.

The lap joint is when one wood joins with another by overlapping each other. You also do not need a jig to make such joints because overlapping requires a simple cut and some glues.

The mortise and tenon joint is where the woodworker makes a whole on a piece of wood and insert another wood into the first one. On the other hand, a dowel joint is very close to the mortise and tenon. Here, both wood pieces need a socket to stay attached.

Dovetail-joint

On top of everything, a dovetail joint is very strong. It is the joint where the end of two wood pieces tie with another by inserting the edges at a very accurate angle. Woodworkers just need glue to show the very prestigious craftmanship!

Consider the quality of material

Mainly dovetail joints come with stainless steel body with the template from aluminum. Since the machine deals with solid woods and it is very important to maintain a steady position for perfect angle of dovetails. From that point of view, we heavily discourage to buy a dovetail jig with a plastic base.

Ease of Use

There are two types of dovetail jigs available. One step and Two step. Definitely the one step version is easier to operate and also EXPENSIVE.

One step dovetail jig allows making the joint simultaneously at two different wood. On the contrary a two step jig has a lot more possibility of error even for the experts.

dovetail-jig

Template

You need a template to make the dovetail joints. Usually, most of the jigs are with a fixed template such as Porter Cable 4212. However, you may need a different template for different works and for that Porter-Cable has another jig that comes with a full kit.

Accuracy of the joint

Not all dovetail jigs offer the same accuracy level. Please read an in-depth review before buying it. We have seen that Woodstock has a very good clamp to lock the wood while working. On the other hand, the Leigh has a clamp but not as solid compared to the Woodstock.

Limitation of size

Dovetail jigs come with some standard sizes. Such as most of the jigs can work up to 12 inches of width. In case of your need for 16 inches or more, read the specifications carefully to ensure that you are going to receive the accurate product.

Similarly, all dovetail jigs cannot deal the workpieces of same thickness. With only a few jigs you can make a depth of 1.5 inches. On the other hand the finger size matters as well. Most of the jigs are with a half inch of finger size but some may offer a quarter inch as well.

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About the Author

I am Mark Richard.A Brand enthusiast.I am a business graduate having professional qualification in research & marketing. Earlier I have worked for several research agencies and engaged myself behind this.I have a panel of 27 independent review experts who are continuously working on assessing different products.

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