#1 Mortises can totally be cut without the use of a chain mortiser! Why is this good news? Because chain mortisers are pretty pricey. Here is the one Mr. Hillier is after. It's in Mr. Hillier's opinion that Mafell are some of the finest made woodworking tools currently on the market. Check out their philosophy if your interested and have a chance. Overall, it takes a bit longer to cut mortises without a chain mortiser (about 5x), so if your in a hurry....maybe splurge for the tools.
What you need to cut mortises without a chain mortiser:
* 1 1/2 " ultra smooth wood owl auger bit
* 18 volt Metabo drill (The big selling feature on this drill for Mr. Hillier.....the 3 year warranty on the batteries....unheard of)
* 1 1/2" and 2" Barr Framing Chisel
* A wooden mallet
* How-to video on cutting mortises without a chain mortiser coming soon*
* Watch for timbers that are out of square. Out of square timbers can make layout difficult and makes it next to impossible to get connections to fit perfectly.
* Wavy timbers. This effect happens when the band (blade) on the sawmill is dull. Wavy edges also make layout a challenge since you have no totally flat/straight edge to lay your framing square against (Note: framing squares are used for laying out a timberframe).
* Watch for inconsistent sizing of timber. The timbers in this frame varied in dimension by over 1/2" making layout a challenge and adding the extra step of measuring each timber before cutting the joint that will receive that timber in a connection.
Really if you can, check out the sawmill before you order. If possible try to take a look at the timbers milled by your sawmill and look for any of the above potential issues.
Let us know how your projects are going, and if you have any questions or comments related to this post or timberframing give us a shout at firstname.lastname@example.org.