Download PDF version (445.1k) Log In or Register to view the full article as a PDF document.

Planing the hinge stile.

To avoid costly mistakes, the "X" and all the scribe lines must always point toward the inside of the door bench. To keep this straight, imagine that the bench is just like the doorstop on the jamb. The hinges will then be installed with the barrels pointing away from the door bench. Also, the door plane should always bevel in the same direction — down toward the inside of the bench. Again, it’s important to hold the fence tightly against the face of the door so the plane doesn’t rock (Figure 4).

Door4a.jpg (10311 bytes)

Figure 4. To avoid confusion when beveling the stiles, always work with the X facing toward the work bench. Make several passes with the plane, taking a small amount of material each time and holding the guide firmly against the face of the door to avoid a wavy reveal (top). The last step is to tip the plane to ease the edges (bottom).

Door4b.jpg (9489 bytes)

Otherwise, the bevel might vary and cause an ugly wave in the margin between the door and the jamb. Watch the scribe line carefully. If it isn’t parallel to the edge of the door, slowly plane until the line and the edge of the door are parallel, then plane closer toward the line with successive passes. Never bury the cutter or try to cut too much on one pass. There’s no hurry, so just make smooth passes that slowly approach the scribe line. I like to just leave the line, then finish by tipping the plane at an angle and easing the edge of the stile.

Lock stile prep.

To avoid having to move the door too many times, I mortise the hinges before planing the lock stile. But the lock stile planing process is the same. The biggest hurdle is cutting a consistent bevel. Otherwise, the gaps will be too big, or the door will rub against the jamb or may not even shut. Check the angle frequently by placing a square across the bevel at various points along the stile. On a 1-3/4-inch door with a bevel of about 3 degrees, the bevel should fall away from the square a little more than 1/16 inch.