Back saw

A short rectangular saw with fine teeth and a rigid "spine" along the top of the blade. A backsaw is used for fine joinery work such as cutting dovetail joints. Also see Dozuki.


The outermost, protective layer, of a tree composed of dead cork and other elements.


A small rounded, raised profile, routed along the edge of a board.

Bench Dog

A metal or wooden peg that fits into a hole in a workbench and is used to hold a workpiece in place. The peg can be round or square and sometimes fitted with special springs to hold them in place.


An angular edge on a piece of stock, usually running from the top or face surface to the adjacent edge or the opposing (bottom) surface. In most cases, bevels are formed for joinery, but are also occasionally used for decorative purposes.

Bevel cut

An angled cut through a board.

Birds-eye figure

A figure on wood, usually maple and a few other species. The figure is composed of many small BB size rounded areas resembling a birds eye. The figuring is most common on plain and rotary sawn lumber.


A small, football-shaped spline used as reinforcement in a biscuit joint.

Biscuit Joint

A butt joint that is reinforced with a football shaped "biscuit". The biscuits are usually made from compressed pieces of wood, usually birch. When a biscuit comes into contact with glue in the joint it swells creating a tighter joint. Also called a Plate Joint.

Blade guide

The part of a band saw that keeps the blade tracking true while cutting.

Blast Gate

A special fitting designed to control the flow of air in a whole shop dust collection system. By opening the blast gate on a machine suction is allow to occur. Blast gates are available from WoodZone in aluminum and plastic.


a term used to describe joinery whose mating surfaces do not protrude through the face or end grain of the pieces being joined. Example - blind mortise and tenon joint

Board Foot

A form of wood measurement, where one board foot equals the volume of a board 1 inch thick, 12 inches wide, and 12 inches long.




A term in veneering, where successive pieces of veneer from a flitch are arranged side by side. A properly done bookmatch will resemble a mirror image of the opposite side.


The hole for the arbor in a circular saw blade.


A defective piece of lumber that has warped along its length.


A type of warping that causes boards to curl up at their ends.

Box joint

Joint made of equally sized and spaced notches and pins cut into the edges or ends of a board.


A small finishing nail up to 1' long.


A profile, which resembles a board rounded over at each face of one edge.


Bulges and irregular growths that form on the trunks and roots of trees. Burls are highly sought after for the incredible veneer they yield.


Discoloration left on a board by a dull cutter, blade or bit. Feeding material at an improper rate or binding may also burn stock.


A raised ridge of metal used on a scraper to remove wood.

Butt joint

A woodworking joint where two boards are glued edge to edge or face to edge without overlapping.