A biscuit joiner is a woodworking tool used to join two pieces of wood together. It is a miniature saw which cuts thin slots onto the edges of a wood board, which is then used to hold two pieces of wood boards together. It is also called a plate joiner.
Even though biscuit joiners have little to no use beyond the job that they are made for, it can be a valuable tool, especially for woodworkers who are making specialized furniture, cabinetry or unique wood crafts.
What is a biscuit?
A “biscuit” may sound appetizing, but this biscuit is far from being edible! A biscuit in woodworking is a thin, oval-shaped, highly dried, and compressed piece of wood that is made primarily of beechwood or particle wood. A biscuit is usually covered with glue and immediately placed in the slot (which has been cut by the biscuit joiner) on the edge of one board and in the corresponding slot on the other board, clamping two boards together.
Sometimes, the glue is applied to the slots before the biscuits are placed inside them.
Joining the two wooden boards together via biscuits is especially useful when making tables tops, chairs, and cabinets.
Why should you use a biscuit joiner?
Using a biscuit joiner is a quick, easy, and simple way to join two pieces of wood boards together. Just cut slots in the mating stocks, apply glue, place the biscuits in the slots, assemble, clamp, and you’re done.
Using a biscuit joiner does away the problems which are usually associated with using a slot-cutting router since it is mostly impossible to continuously insert router bits into the edge of the board at a perfect perpendicular angle. A biscuit joiner’s blades can spin at speeds of up to 10,000 RPM and are embedded within the guard of the saw, before being quickly plunged into the edge of the wood board.
In addition, a biscuit joiner has guiding features that effectively ensure perpendicular cuts to a wood board’s edge, resulting to a perfectly snug fit.
While the biscuit joiner looks like a complicated and intimidating machine, it is, in fact, so simple and easy to use. It allows you to make quick and accurate joints, and you can use it to join both hardwoods and softwoods, plywood, composition boards, etc.
What are the features of a biscuit joiner?
We highlight the most important features of a biscuit joiner. There’s a depth scale that’s fully adjustable. There’s also the bevel which can cut slots at a maximum of 45 degrees. It also has a sawdust port for collecting dusts after cutting the slots.
How to use a biscuit joiner?
Place the two boards on in their final positions. Make sure that they are correctly aligned.
- Using a pencil, make even spaced-out markings across the joint, where every biscuit of the board will fit in.
- Put the biscuit joiner’s guide fence flat atop one of the board’s surface, and line the cutting guide using a pencil. You should do this one board at a time.
- Turn on the biscuit joiner’s saw, inserting the blade into the board up to the stop line.
- Remove the biscuit joiner and repeat this process at every pencil mark.
- Once you have completed all the cuts, apply glue on the slots of one of the boards.
- Insert a biscuit in each glued board.
- Slide the second board onto the biscuit.
- To ensure that these two boards are securely joined together as the glue dries, use clamps. However, make sure not to clamp too tightly. Doing so will force the glue out, and you don’t want that to happen.
The following lists essential tools for making wood joints using biscuits and a biscuit joiner:
AOBEN 8.5 Amp Biscuit Cutter Plate Joiner With No. 0 Wood(30 Pcs) No. 10 Wood(30 Pcs) No. 20 Wood(50 Pcs), 4" Tungsten Carbide Tipped Blade, Adjustable Angle And Dust Bag
wolfcraft 2995404 Compressed Wafer Shaped Wood Joining Biscuits for Joining Wood Pieces, #R3, 90 Piece Jar
For reference, a biscuit designated as “#10” measures 2-1/8” x 3/4” x 19/128” (length x width x thickness)
For reference, a biscuit designated as “R3” measures 1” x 1/2” x 3/32” (l x w x t)
woodworking glue – white, yellow or liquid hide glue.