Basic woodworking joints

If your goal is learning woodworking, studying different types of wood joints is as important as getting to know various woodworking tools

One of the basic concepts in woodworking is wood joinery. Can you imagine what would happen if there were no wood joinery? Simple. All wood items would be sculptures, carved out of a single piece of wood. Thanks to the innovation of a number of different joints, woodworkers have a variety of wood joinery at their disposal which they use depending on the project requirements.  Let us know several basic wood joineries. 

1.Butt joint

This is the most basic wood joint. A butt joint is when one pieces of wood shanks into another at a right angle and fastened using mechanical fasteners. This type of joint is commonly used in wall framing on construction sites.

2.Mitered butt joint

A mitered butt joint is another butt joint with the difference in how one piece of the board joined with the other. In this type of joint, the two pieces of wood are joined using a square shape corner. The advantage is that the mitered butt joint will not show any end grain, and as such is a bit more aesthetically pleasing. However, the mitered butt joint isn’t all that strong.

3.Half-lap joint

The half-joint is where half of the two boards are being joined with one another. This type of wood joinery is a weak joint but stronger than a butt joint. In spite of the weakness of this type of joint, there are a number of projects where half-lap joints are preferable.

4.Tongue and groove joint

When joining two boards together, one can attach with the other along a long edge by simply shanking into its counterpart board.  But to hold the two pieces together, you need to use a fastener. The tongue and groove joint are much stronger if you use glue as a fastener.

5.Mortise and tenon joint

The mortise and tenon is a classic wood joint. Woodworkers have been using this joint from the early time of woodworking. It is one of the strongest and elegant methods of wood joining.

6.Biscuit joint

This is another method like the tongue and groove joint for joining two pieces of wood boards together. It is a woodworking technique in which pieces of wood are joined using football-shaped disks of wood usually made of beechwood. The joining points are strengthened with glue or adhesive.  Biscuit joints are useful modern woodworking joints to hold the boards in place.

7.Pocket joint

The pocket joint is a type of wood joint that involves cutting a slot on a piece of board and drilling a hole on another board and then joining them together using screws. The drilling on the board needs to be quite precise and typically accomplished by the use of a commercial jig. Pocket joints work great for making cabinets and other similar applications where strong wood joints are not necessary.


A dado is making a square groove slot on a piece of the board where another board will fit. Similar to tongue and groove joinery, this is a commonly-used wood joint for connecting plywood such as making cabinetry. Dado’s joint is a popular wood joining technique among woodworkers. If you want to become a skilled woodworker, you need to achieve mastery over the dado joint. It is because dado joint is such an important joint that every woodworker needs to inevitably use this joint.


A rabbet is another wood joinery that is used in making cabinetry. A rabbet is basically a dado cut along the edge of aboard. Rabbets are frequently used at the back of cabinets and other similar assemblies for attaching the back to the sides of the box, adding a considerable amount of strength to the assembly.

10.Dovetail joint

It is classic wood joinery. This method of joinery is a beautiful process of joining two pieces of boards together and provides a strong attachment with two working pieces. There are a few methods for creating through dovetails, from hand cutting to machining with a jig.

11.Sliding dovetail

It is a versatile wood joining process. It has multiple uses. Sliding dovetail joints have been used for centuries for building boxes, chests, drawers and in other woodworking projects.

12.Box joint

Dovetail joints are strong and beautiful but in many projects such joints are impractical. Then, a box joint comes as a rescuer for woodworkers. It is a simpler alternative to the dovetail joint.

13.Dowel joints

Dowel joints are exceptionally strong and looking great visually. This type of joint is quite popular for making drawers or other woodworking in which a butt joint is being used. It enhances the strength and durability of the joint.

14.Lap joints

These are strong joints since the connection surface is wide. However, such a joint requires wood glue and you need to make sure that the long edges are perfectly flat.


Woodworking is great to work as a hobby or as a profession. If you are a bit an extrovert and like to do creative work, woodworking is the right hobby for you. As a trade, woodworking is a lucrative business too. Learning woodworking joints will be an immense help whether you pursue woodworking as a hobby or a profession.


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