TESTED: FastCap FastTenon Joiners
Above: Test samples showed that for some applications these tenon joiners can be useful.
Review and photos: Raf Nathan
FastCap is a US company that has developed quite a range of innovative tools and accessories for woodworkers and cabinetmakers.
These plastic tenons are a good example of their work. They are designed to be used instead of wooden domino tenons. Made of tough plastic they come in one size (6mm x 38mm), and have small barbs on them that grip into the wood. The barbs are angled to force the tenon down into the mortise, and there are small indents to allow glue adhesion.
FastCap say you don’t need clamps to pull the joins together and I would agree with this 90–95% of the way. They do apply good clamping pressure, but they don’t replace bringing a joint together with a clamp. You cannot have one slot wider as we do with wood tenons to ease alignment, so be very careful with the domino cutter to align the mortises as perfectly as possible.
Made of tough plastic, FastTenon joiners are 6mm x 38mm and small barbs that grip into the wood.
I got pretty good results on my test pieces with the edge to edge joint coming out quite tight. The 90° joint however was only just acceptable and not crisp enough for a chair or structural section that is load bearing. The joint would be acceptable for non-load bearing applications.
I liked them, as they are nearly good enough to bring wood together for certain applications where you can’t or don’t need to use clamps. Applying mouldings, panelling, aligning tabletop boards or for simple building work they are excellent. I wouldn’t use these all the time, but definitely for a tricky job or somewhere where you can’t clamp – for this they are ideal. Priced at around $60 for 100.
Review product supplied by Timbecon www.timbecon.com.au
Raf Nathan is a furniture designer maker who lives near Brisbane.