Author Topic: Dominos or dado for dresser center support/divider  (Read 1439 times)

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Offline rubber_ducky

  • Posts: 49
Dominos or dado for dresser center support/divider
« on: April 22, 2021, 09:26 PM »
Hi all,

I’m planning a dresser build that, if/when complete, will be my first carcass with a center divider. It’ll be a six drawer dresser and the divider will be used for drawer slide hardware mounting.

I watched a dresser build YT video recently where the maker used dominos for the mitered corners of the carcass, but cut a dado for the center divider. This made me wonder why he didn’t use dominos for the divider as well, which is the genesis of this question...

Does a dado’d divider offer any benefit over a dominoed (and glued) one?


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Offline ChuckM

  • Posts: 2705
Re: Dominos or dado for dresser center support/divider
« Reply #1 on: April 22, 2021, 09:42 PM »
Snip.
Does a dado’d divider offer any benefit over a dominoed (and glued) one?

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In the absence of a picture or screenshot of the YT project you referred to, my opinion is that a dadoed divider offers no advantage of whatsoever over a dominoed one. Everything being equal, I'd choose dominoes over dadoes for their simplicity (no need for test cuts or fine-tuning a dado stack, and no need to size boards based on the dado depth).
« Last Edit: April 22, 2021, 10:17 PM by ChuckM »

Offline Alex

  • Posts: 7479
Re: Dominos or dado for dresser center support/divider
« Reply #2 on: April 23, 2021, 03:03 AM »
Yes, makes no difference. It is just a choice, you can go one way, you can go the other way.

Offline Svar

  • Posts: 2402
Re: Dominos or dado for dresser center support/divider
« Reply #3 on: April 23, 2021, 03:13 AM »
For a loaded shelf dado is more durable. For a simple partition makes little difference.

Offline rubber_ducky

  • Posts: 49
Re: Dominos or dado for dresser center support/divider
« Reply #4 on: April 23, 2021, 04:05 AM »
Thanks for the replies all. These align with my intuition. For reference, this is the YT video that referred to:




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Online Bob D.

  • Posts: 2132
Re: Dominos or dado for dresser center support/divider
« Reply #5 on: April 23, 2021, 06:19 AM »
Mechanically the only difference I can think of is with a dado the divider is constrained from movement continuously for the length of the dado. With Dominos it is only constrained from movement at the Domino locations.

Depending on Domino spacing this might allow the piece to deflect or warp over time. Assuming there is also glue applied to this joint that seems unlikely.

Could that happen and could it lead to binding of drawer runners I don't know. I guess it is possible if the glue joint fails but how many decades would it take for that to happen.
-----
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Offline derekcohen

  • Posts: 562
    • In The Woodshop
Re: Dominos or dado for dresser center support/divider
« Reply #6 on: April 23, 2021, 08:19 AM »
Hi all,

I’m planning a dresser build that, if/when complete, will be my first carcass with a center divider. It’ll be a six drawer dresser and the divider will be used for drawer slide hardware mounting.

I watched a dresser build YT video recently where the maker used dominos for the mitered corners of the carcass, but cut a dado for the center divider. This made me wonder why he didn’t use dominos for the divider as well, which is the genesis of this question...

Does a dado’d divider offer any benefit over a dominoed (and glued) one?


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Dominos will secure MDF or Ply, which do not move/expand/contract. A dado is needed for solid wood (even web frames), where movement is anticipated.

Regards from Perth

Derek
Visit www.inthewoodshop.com for tutorials on joinery, hand tools, and my trials and tribulations with furniture builds.

Offline ChuckM

  • Posts: 2705
Re: Dominos or dado for dresser center support/divider
« Reply #7 on: April 23, 2021, 09:06 AM »
In a solid-wood case construction, treat the center divider like its sides. The grain direction of the sides, divider(s), top and bottom must be parallel, with the parts joined end-to-end.

Offline rubber_ducky

  • Posts: 49
Re: Dominos or dado for dresser center support/divider
« Reply #8 on: April 23, 2021, 10:33 AM »
I hadn’t thought about the nuances between solid wood and sheet goods. These are valid points. I should’ve mentioned it in my OP that I intend to use BB ply. This is a dresser for a four year old boy after all :)

Seems that sheet goods don’t require the same amount planning/caution


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Offline ChuckM

  • Posts: 2705
Re: Dominos or dado for dresser center support/divider
« Reply #9 on: April 23, 2021, 10:47 AM »
I hadn’t thought about the nuances between solid wood and sheet goods. These are valid points. I should’ve mentioned it in my OP that I intend to use BB ply. This is a dresser for a four year old boy after all :)

Seems that sheet goods don’t require the same amount planning/caution


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Just follow the butt joint procedures laid out in the manual (take the center divider as a shelf). Second image: The arrowed part being dry-fit is a divider. It was cut to the same length as the sides -- the beauty of not using dadoes in this case (no pun intended). No other joinery machines were used in this project which also included a rail & stile door, other than a DF500.
« Last Edit: April 23, 2021, 11:01 AM by ChuckM »

Offline Bert Vanderveen

  • Posts: 808
Re: Dominos or dado for dresser center support/divider
« Reply #10 on: April 23, 2021, 02:23 PM »
Working with ply using a dado simplifies construction, especially if you can use screws.
Cheers, Bert Vanderveen

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Offline Crazyraceguy

  • Posts: 500
Re: Dominos or dado for dresser center support/divider
« Reply #11 on: April 24, 2021, 09:21 PM »
Working with ply using a dado simplifies construction, especially if you can use screws.

I'm not really seeing that? No matter how you do the dados, router or saw, I would already be well ahead of that with a Domino.
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Offline Birdhunter

  • Posts: 3484
  • Woodworker, Sportsman, Retired
Re: Dominos or dado for dresser center support/divider
« Reply #12 on: April 25, 2021, 02:17 AM »
Could there be an issue with assembly sequencing?
Birdhunter

Offline Bob Wolfe

  • Posts: 98
Re: Dominos or dado for dresser center support/divider
« Reply #13 on: April 29, 2021, 10:30 PM »
I think bird hunter correct. My experience is assembling mitered domino corners a b*itch and then add more dominoes in dividers????

Offline ChuckM

  • Posts: 2705
Re: Dominos or dado for dresser center support/divider
« Reply #14 on: April 29, 2021, 10:53 PM »
I don't see how miters pose a problem as long as the assembly sequence is sorted out beforehand. In the image shown here, the divider had dominoes on three sides (bottom and two sides), and it went in before the case sides were assembled.
« Last Edit: April 29, 2021, 11:11 PM by ChuckM »