The fast and easy half-half-half drawer construction method

The fast and easy half-half-half drawer construction method

Why don’t more people do this? You can batch out a pile of drawers in minutes!
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  1. Jim McWhirter on June 20, 2023 at 1:23 pm

    I see a lot of people asking the same question, and no answers: How do you adjust this method to reality? Even $100/sheet (just paid that today) 1/2" Baltic Birch plywood is NOT 1/2" How to accommodate the real thickness of plywood when using this technique?

  2. Stephan C on June 20, 2023 at 1:26 pm

    Good video

  3. Laurențiu Stânea on June 20, 2023 at 1:26 pm

    I’m european, would this still work if I have a router table with 12mm spiral router bit and 24mm thickness drawer box components? The drawer bottom can be 12mm too

  4. Dean Citroni on June 20, 2023 at 1:29 pm

    I like the high-profile featherboard where do you pick one of those up?

  5. Gianni SoZo on June 20, 2023 at 1:30 pm

    This is awesome! Never heard of this set up before.

  6. Srta.TacoMal on June 20, 2023 at 1:30 pm

    1:58: Thank you, bestie 😌

  7. Rand P on June 20, 2023 at 1:30 pm

    Can do do these dados etc with a router instead?

  8. ken cook on June 20, 2023 at 1:31 pm

    Watched several videos explaining this, but this has been the best one explaining the concept. Others did well adding the glue-up process though so I’d take a look at a few others as well.

  9. Mike Matthews on June 20, 2023 at 1:31 pm

    Can I use a router the same way?

  10. Tim Sharr on June 20, 2023 at 1:31 pm

    Excellent video. I learned so much beyond the quarter quarter Quarter method ! Your visuals go above and beyond for teaching. I think I would need a sacrificial fence that was taller to feel safe.

  11. iPick 4Fun on June 20, 2023 at 1:32 pm

    I’m all about cost savings. For draw bottom, if I have 1/4" and it will work, why not adjust setup to use the 1/4" sheet good. It’s such over kill to use 1/2". If one doesn’t want to adjust the setup, 1/4" into 3/8" slot is perfectly fine right? It’s not like anyone will see the 1/8" gap at the bottom of a drawer on the inside right?

  12. DMTX on June 20, 2023 at 1:35 pm

    It’s time we transition to metric

  13. Wild Rabbit Woodworking on June 20, 2023 at 1:35 pm

    This is a great tip. If you don’t have a dado set, you can also do a similar setup on a router table.

  14. Vernon Byler on June 20, 2023 at 1:35 pm

    Thanks for the in depth video.

  15. Jeff Guyett on June 20, 2023 at 1:35 pm

    Excellent work! I just butt jointed some nice walnut drawer boxes that I now have the solution to run 1/2-1/2-1/2 (or 5/16-5/16-5/16 in the case of the 5/8 walnut I milled!). No regrets, just an excellent 😁learning experience!
    Thank you so much!

  16. Patrick Whelan on June 20, 2023 at 1:35 pm

    How about making the cuts with a router as I do not have a table saw. If 3/4" stock is used and I want 1/4" bottom, I guess I’ll have to change out the bit….

  17. Miyagi Junior on June 20, 2023 at 1:35 pm

    Hey stumpy – I used the half method on undersized 1/2 ply. Used 15/64" for distance from blade and blade depth (which is half of the stock thickness). The fit ended up really tight. With much coercion and tapping with a hammer, I can fit the pieces together. But I seriously doubt I will be able to get glue in there. Do you have a recommendation on what needs to be changed when the joints end up too tight? Anything that might stand out as obvious?

  18. jonathan quirion on June 20, 2023 at 1:35 pm

    How thick is wood block?

  19. acme511 on June 20, 2023 at 1:35 pm

    Nice. I do the same on my router table

  20. TheTycarroll on June 20, 2023 at 1:36 pm

    Great method but as I am designing some drawers right now I wanted to clarify something. Running all the dados for the drawer bottom straight through the pieces will leave you with a visible square hole in the front and back panels. This will of course be somewhat filled in with the bottom and then covered with a false front but just want to double check others are having that same result during design and building and that I haven’t cocked things up. Thanks for the clear explanation of this easy method!

  21. Stephane on June 20, 2023 at 1:40 pm

    Wondering if bottom dado for drawer bottom is strong enough with 1/4 lip when using plywood? Preferable to have 1/2 in of plywood under the bottom dado? Means you have to adjust your fence a couple of times

  22. Klas Eckerberg on June 20, 2023 at 1:41 pm

    Great video! Being from Sweden – a country that relies heavily on international standard – I always marvel at the way you manage to keep track of inches, feet and yards! 3/4, 3/8, 3/16 and so on… The metric system is SO much easier to grasp. 😄

  23. David McMichael on June 20, 2023 at 1:41 pm

    To all who have watched various demonstrations of draw assembly. This is by far the best video out there.
    This method is easy, it’s strong, and the most efficient method to a mechanical wood joint.
    Thank You James.

  24. martino amello on June 20, 2023 at 1:42 pm

    A lot of newer homes where I live use garbage materials for cabinets and drawers in particular, usually butt jointed mdf just stapled together so I do a lot of cabinet repair for customers, both doors and drawers.. Easy money and easy work and nearly every new house in the area has the same junk cabinetry..

  25. Paul Beaver on June 20, 2023 at 1:42 pm

    really enjoy watching your videos. Always informative and easy to understand.
    How would you secure a notched end (like a birds mouth, used at the bottom ends of 2 sets of crossed/scissor legs) to a square piece of wood running horizontal from one set of legs to the other set of legs on the opposite side) Wish I could send a photo.

  26. Robert King on June 20, 2023 at 1:43 pm

    Excellent instruction! Your diagrams help a lot. Question: Lacking a dado set, couldn’t one use a router table and 3/8 straight bit rather than a table saw?

  27. Nate Moore on June 20, 2023 at 1:43 pm

    Got my wood planed down to 5/8” (for blumotion glides). Now to review half and half drawers. I don’t want to be here all day. Ah, very nice explanation. Thanks! Back to the shop.

  28. Deborah Lopez on June 20, 2023 at 1:45 pm

    I used this method and it was super easy. But for some reason my rabbits ended up longer then the dado. So I had to trim the rabbit ends. Maybe you can tell me why this happened

  29. Srta.TacoMal on June 20, 2023 at 1:46 pm

    "Literally minutes"
    My circular saw and trim router: "Oh hon hon hon~"

    Reporting back: I, who have virtually no woodworking experience, somehow managed it with the circular saw and trim router on the first try. No redoing, just some embers from my trim router threatening to, and I quote, "burn this [censored] to the ground if you make me cut one more [censored] dado." Thank you, 3/8– 3/8–3/8–sensei.

  30. Michael Haywood on June 20, 2023 at 1:50 pm

    Excellent safety tips!

  31. johnnyb95678 on June 20, 2023 at 1:55 pm

    Jim, thank you for another amazing clear and safety driven approach. Thank you!

  32. Merlin Zener on June 20, 2023 at 1:55 pm

    is there a way to do this without a dado blade?

  33. Steve Sanford on June 20, 2023 at 1:56 pm

    Thank you Stumpy for this video, I was looking for a method to make drawers that had some joinery for added strength. This is the method I will adapt! Keep up the great videos!

  34. Aaron K on June 20, 2023 at 1:56 pm

    What kind of plywood should be used for shop drawers (not what size but what species)?

  35. swolleneyes on June 20, 2023 at 1:57 pm

    half-half-half is also half the number of syllables you have to say

  36. TheTranq on June 20, 2023 at 1:59 pm

    Finally getting around to using this…I noticed that in your rendering of the joint, the sides have a stopped groove (5:09) for the bottom which allows for no gap to be seen from the joint. If, however, you do a full groove as shown when you make it, you end up with a small gap from the groove

  37. R R on June 20, 2023 at 2:00 pm

    Good Luck finding true i/2 or 3/4 inch plywood at home depot or lowe’s These morons use terms like 1/4, 1/2, 3/4 inch "CATAGORY" but it is the fault of the thieving wood industry. measure your wood product then divide by 2.

  38. gil segev on June 20, 2023 at 2:00 pm

    This is such a useful video! I built a few 1/2” drawers following this method and it worked really well on the first try! The only issue I encountered is that the little stump left over between the bottom and side dados of the side pieces tends to break easily. It’s just esthetic issue, no functional impact on how the drawer works or anything.

  39. Neil Campbell on June 20, 2023 at 2:03 pm

    How are dados & rabbits made without table saw and router?

  40. Gardener42 on June 20, 2023 at 2:07 pm

    Thinking this through – dado sets are a rarity here in the UK & unavailable for my table saw.
    Surely this could be done on my router table using the correct diameter bit?

  41. David Weisbach on June 20, 2023 at 2:07 pm

    Thank you for such a clear explanation. can this be done with a router?

  42. Joshua Kuntz on June 20, 2023 at 2:08 pm

    I know I’m really late to the party here, but I just made my first set of this style of drawer this weekend. One thing I ran into that may help other people (and that I have not seen on any of the explanation videos) is… You really need to be precise when cutting your pieces to length before cutting the rabbets and dados, especially your bottom panels. If you can use all the same stops on a cross cut sled or something like that, you will probably get the best results. I don’t have a cross cut setup, so I cut my sides to length on the miter saw, and bottom panels on the table saw. My drawers would not go together, because the bottom panels were almost an 1/8th too long. So I had to reset my table saw up to rip them down, reset the the dado blade up, and recut 1 dado on each of my 4 drawer bottoms. Not the end of the world, but it was enough to make me walk away from the project for the day!

  43. Lincoln Dickerson on June 20, 2023 at 2:10 pm

    As always you are clear, concise and complete. Keep up the great work!

  44. G8RRPh1 on June 20, 2023 at 2:10 pm

    I tried this and it worked very well, until I skimped on the plywood. I will be much more selective on the quality I get for drawers. Darn voids!!!

  45. JohnMac on June 20, 2023 at 2:14 pm

    so….where do you get true 1/2" plywood?

  46. DW on June 20, 2023 at 2:15 pm

    Triple 1/2 is a perfect name for this method of making drawers. 👍🏻

  47. Rich Ragan on June 20, 2023 at 2:17 pm

    James you’re MORE AMAZING than the Ridge Carbide blades!!!! This video BEATS ALL THE OTHERS BY FAR on lock joint drawers!!!! But that is the way ALL your videos are!!! You are an INVALUABLE resource for intermediate woodworkers like me!!! I wish I culd pay you for all the woodworking ways you’ve taught me!! Guess I can just say THANK YOU JAMES!!!!

  48. Gary Stavropoulos on June 20, 2023 at 2:17 pm

    If you don’t have a dado stack, you can use a router which so far haven’t been banned.

  49. Amazonian Seth on June 20, 2023 at 2:18 pm

    This is incredibly helpful and efficient. Thank you nubs, your stumpiness has proven resourceful yet again.

  50. amosevie on June 20, 2023 at 2:20 pm

    This was great especially since plywood is sold in so many different thicknesses. Now I know how to modify when I have to use 12mm plywood. I am going to try to modify the groove on the bottom for 4.75mm plywood. I’ll let you know how that works out.