A most important point in the construction of a dovetail is to avoid having the angles of the pins and tails too acute. An inclination of one in eight is considered correct; no hard and fast rule need be obeyed, but the variation should on no account be less than one in six.
Fig. 271.—How to obtain Correct Angles for Dovetail Template.
Fig. 272.—Squaring and use of Template.
shows a simple method to obtain the correct angle. Take a piece of timber and plane up the face edge (A, B) true and straight; mark out a line (C, D) at right angles to the face edge and space off 8 ins. as shown; now measure a distance of 1 in. (D, E), and join E to point eight. This will give the correct angle for the dovetails, and it may then be transferred to the joiners' bevel. Many workers who are constantly on dovetail work make a zinc template to the exact angle and keep it specially for the purpose .