Shop Built Slot Mortising Machine

Tool of the Week Winner
This project won Tool of the Week at


Here is a Slot Mortising Machine I made mostly from bits and pieces that I had lying about the shop. It is therefore, by far the cheapest machine I have and a very handy addition to my workshop.

I use it for cutting the mortises for floating tenon joints, spline mitre joints and for any slotting work that is required. The machine comprises X and Y tables that run on drawer slides and a router that is mounted in a height-adjustable plate so that I have Z adjustment as well.

There are stops for delimiting the cut distance and a depth stop for controlling depth of cut. Clamps hold the work down and a mirror enables the blind side of the work to be seen.

The mechanism in front of the tables controls the depth of pass (1 turn of the black knob = 1/32″) so there is no stress on the machine or on the work. The machine is a real pleasure to use and is always a talking point when visitors enter my workshop.



  1. Hi Brendon I thought your mortise machine was not only the best design also the most Beautiful I have ever seen. The craftsmanship was first class I was inspired to try to copy your design, just finished mine i believe i have done you proud. Your planes are breath taking a true thing of Beauty.thanks for posting. Good luck in your future projects best regards nick.

  2. Brendon

    October 14, 2015 at 6:43 am

    Hi Nick
    Thank you indeed for your kind comments.
    I am honored indeed by you wanting to emulate my
    slot mortising machine.
    I would love to see some pictures of it.

    • Hi Brendan I have some pictures. Of my slot mortise machine ,but do not know how to send them to you . I would like your opinion,cheers nick.

      • Brendon

        October 23, 2015 at 6:30 am

        Hi Nick
        Have you tried sending them by private message?
        Or have you a blog that I can visit.
        Alternatively, can you post them

  3. I posted slot machine on you tube Dbsquickstep ,thanks for the idea for the build cheers nick

    • Just had a look at your video Nick. You have certainly done a superb job. I love it.
      I bet you can appreciate how smooth running this design is and what a pleasure it is to use. I am very chuffed that you considered my design worth copying.
      Thanks for the credits and I wish you many happy hours and successful projects with your machine.

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