Understanding the ins and outs of wood joinery is tricky, indeed. But if you're persistent, you can master the art of professional woodworking in your own backyard workshop!
Joining wood with success takes more than punctilious measuring, hands-on experience, and sheer luck. In fact, one or two stubborn tools can render a crooked joint that looks unsightly on your door frame.
Only the best mortise and tenon jig can help you get started with wood joinery and learn its ways. Once you pair two pieces of wood in a neat mortise and tenon joint for the first time, the hard work will surely pay off!
General Tools 870 E Z Pro Mortise and Tenon Jig
5 out of 5
Trend MT/JIG Mortise and Tenon Jig
5 out of 5
Leigh Frame Mortise and Tenon Jig
4.5 out of 5
3 Best Mortise and Tenon Jig Reviews
Mortise and tenon joinery, once done right, can produce unbreakable, neat joints that show-off your excellent woodworking skills and last for years. We'll be talking about the top 3 mortise and tenon jigs that worked for us right below!
1. General Tools 870 E Z Pro Mortise & Tenon Jig
From versatile stock handling to making precise cuts, this aluminum mortise tenon jig kit by General Tools is our new favorite for making door frames, bed frames, and everything in between!
This super handy tool is ready to use out of the box. With its guidance and flawless measurement hacks, you can get ¼-inch mortise and tenon joints without breaking a sweat. It accepts wood stock from a sleek ½-inch and goes all the way up to frame-ready 1.5 inches.
The fact that this jig works with wood stocks of various thicknesses was a plus point for us. What's more- the General Tools EZ Pro M&T jig can provide several mortise pieces in a long cut.
Its swing arms and integrated clamps align the workpiece and secure it tightly for high-precision joints.
Since the jig's body is made of strong aircraft-grade aluminum, you can comfortably use it without thinking about damaging the tool.
We also liked how the General Tools mortise and tenon jig came with so many handy tools in the box. For example, you get multiple bushing guides for ½", ⅜," and ¼" tenons.
Then there is a two-part bushing adapter, a centering tool, a high-speed ¼-inch up-cut spiral, and finally, an adjustment wrench.
- Suitable for ½-inch to 1-½-inch stock
- An aircraft-grade aluminum construction
- Ability to cut multiple mortises ends in a long, single piece
- Comes with all the necessary equipment
2. Trend MT/JIG Mortise and Tenon Jig
If you want to cut both a mortise and a tenon with the same tool, this mortise & tenon jig by Trend is a cool option.
This budget-friendly Trend jig is an ideal choice for cabinet making, basic to advanced woodworking, and full-on structural building just the same.
All you need is a plunge-style router and blanks of wood you would be turning into mortises and tenons. The rest comes with the box.
That's right; this remarkable M&T jig includes 4 F-clamps, a setup bar with guide bush, a useful cutter selection chart, and last but not least, seven guide bushings to reproduce the same cuts for your furniture.
Now, what makes this one the finest mortise and tenon jig for table saw? It's the reversible template that produces square and round-shaped tenons. Besides, the tool's ability to cut ½-inch to 2-inch thick materials really helped a lot with DIY woodworking at home. This jig supports workpieces that are up to 4 inches wide, which is quite enough for a chair, table, and cabinets if you ask us!
You can create ¼-inch to ⅝-inch thick mortise and tenon joints with this wonderful jig. For your convenience, you can use this super useful jig with all ¼-inch straight router bits.
The adjustable base is a great help when you're making angled joints. You can rotate it from 10-degrees to 45-degrees. Additionally, you may use its template for precise doweling applications!
- Produces ¼-inch to ⅝-inch thick M&T joints
- The adjustable main plate swivels for making angled cuts
- Accurately cuts ½-inch to 2-inch thick materials of up to a 4-inch thickness
- Also suitable for doweling applications
3. Leigh Frame Mortise and Tenoning Jig
The Leigh frame mortise and tenon jig are one of the most popular woodworking tools for their outstanding features. You can make accurate M&T joints in various angles and sizes for your very own craft carpentry.
To begin with, the FMT comes with 5/16-inch guide bushes alongside 5/16-inch spiral up-cuts. This way, you can mix and match twenty crafty variations of the commonplace M&T joint as you know it!
Getting started with a new jig honestly never felt better! For the novice carpenters, its easy, illustrated user manual will guide you through the whole process from scratch.
Once you install additional guide bushings, you can expand the tenon up to ¼-inch, ⅜-inch, and ½-inch sizes. This Leigh jig is capable of producing a total number of 68 mortise and tenon joints.
Why implement the same wood joinery over and over when you can have so many in a simple tool, right?
On top of that, you have endless possibilities for joint sizes. Thanks to the guide bushings and rotating table, you can create tenons that go up to 2-⅛ inches in length.
When it comes to making joints, the Leigh jig is the only tool you're ever going to need.
A brief overview of what you get inside the box includes two-speed clamps, a versatile side-stop fence, some screwdrivers, and of course, all the mounting hardware!
Now, what we liked about this incredible M&T jig is that you don't have to keep a router engaged at all times. It comes with a handy, universal sub-base for the router allowing you to use the tool elsewhere.
You can extract the dust from the rear end of this all-purpose M&T jig through a 1-½-inch connection port.
- Supports a total of 68 variations mortise and tenon joints
- Ability to produce 2-⅛-inch long tenons
- A maximum 3" ×5" stock capacity
- Comes with a router sub-base for ease of use
- An innovative dust extraction system
Comparison Chart of Top Tenoning and Mortise Jig
General Tools 870
1/2-inch to 1-½ -inches
Swing arms and Clamps align the outline for higher accuracy
1/4-inch to 5/8-inch
You can adjust the base with the T-wrench for angled joints
5/16-inch to 1-½-inches
Easy dust extraction
Mortise and Tenon Jig Buying Guide
Before professional tools were here, wood joinery was one of the toughest jobs to ever exist. Because if something is slightly out of place, you would have to start all over again.
That's days and weeks of work down the drain. Fear not; a mortise and tenon jig is just what you need for joining wood in the popular M&T style!
An inaccurate cut or a loose fit are two problems many users face just because their paring tool is as good as spitting in the ocean.
Keep reading so that you know what makes a great mortise and tenon jig and save your precious time!
The best mortise and tenon jig will offer you enough room for versatility in your projects. For example, a cabinet will not require the same joint size as that of a table.
If the jig size restricts the variety of your applications, then that jig is not the one for you!
We especially liked the Leigh FMT for not only its outstanding stock capacity but also its adjustability for accepting wood stocks in various sizes.
In fact, you can expand its cutting capacity up to ½-inch tenons with a maximum 2-⅛-inch length.
Then there are some high-performing jigs that accommodate wood stocks up to 4 inches wide for making heavy door frames and furniture. You can check out the Trend M&T jig if that's something you prefer.
Now, there are plenty of videos on YouTube that teach you how to make mortise and tenon jigs with wood. Speaking from our own experience, a professionally made device lasts much longer and delivers great results as well.
The cuts are made more accurately. And you don't have to press down on the wood and cut it at the same time.
Commercial mortise and tenon jigs come with clamps, swing arms, and such for keeping the blank perfectly aligned.
Making exclusive wooden doors for your next project gets a lot easier with the Leigh frame mortise and tenon jig.
You have guide bushings, a multiway base plate, outrigger bars, speed clamps, and a universal sub-base for the router.
Ease of Use
You can have plenty of experience with wood-joining. And at this point, what really matters is comfort. In order to have that, you need the jig to come with a bunch of user-friendly features. Preferably a few extra tools as well.
In our tenoning jig reviews, we covered three mortise and tenon jigs that come with setup bars, several guide bushings, T-wrenches for precise adjustments, and many more! You can actually use extra guide bushings with the frame M&T jig offered to you by Leigh.
The Trend M&T jig reigns most of the mortise and tenon jig reviews online because it offers you both square and round-shaped tenons in creative variations that go well beyond the average.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. What Are the Uses of Mortise and Tenon Jigs?
Answer: A mortise and tenon jig is a handy woodworking tool that helps you make a mortise and tenon joint for professional woodworking. This type of joint is frequently used in cabinet making, door, bed, and window framing.
They also help you build chairs and tables from scratch. You can carve this joint by your hand, but it's not feasible in a professional setting where you're required to build large pieces of furniture in a short time.
2. Is Making Mortise and Tenon Joints Easier Than Making Dovetails?
Answer: Traditionally, M&T joints are easier than dovetails because they attach two pieces of wood at a right angle. A dovetail joint features protruding parts that lock into each for tight, durable support.
On the other hand, a mortise and tenon joint features two pieces of wood one with a hole at one end (the mortise) and the other with a protruded piece (the tenon). The tenon bit inserts into the mortise, and an M&T joint is created.
3. What Are the Different Types of Tenon Joints?
Answer: The most common types of tenon joints include a stub and a through tenon. A stub tenon joint is when a short tenon goes inside the mortised blank; it's not visible from the other end.
However, a through tenon joint is exactly the opposite. When the tenon bit inserts into the mortise, it sticks out from the back.
A half-shoulder tenon is of the asymmetric type with a shoulder on a single side only. It's widely used in framed and braced doors.
4. Which Paring Tool Should I Use for Cutting Mortise and Tenon Ends?
Answer: If you prefer to hand-cut mortise and Tenon joints, you are going to need a mortise chisel. A good mortise chisel can scoop out the debris as its squared head profile makes right-angled cuts to the wood stock.
Some carpenters will use a hand-held electric saw for big projects. Either way, you'll be needing a mallet, marking tools, guide bushes, and cutting gauges to make mortise and tenon jigs.
5. How to Fix Loose Clamps on My Mortise and Tenon Jig?
Answer: If your mortise and tenon jig is beginning to wear out, it's no surprise that the clamps are not as tight as before.
In that case, you can insert sandpaper in the slot to prevent the clamps or swivel arms from moving around too much.
Mortise and tenon joints are so effective that they have been in the making for over a century now. When done correctly, an M&T can be a standalone joint without needing any fastener at all!
It provides strong, stable support to your bed and door frames giving you peace of mind and a woodworking project with admirable durability.
The best mortise and tenon jig can help you make squared, round, and angled M&T joints to bring versatility to your creative carpentry!
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