life and I disagree. It seems I am in a miniscule minority in using
milled end grain returns for chair rails, window stools, crown caps,
mantles and the like. The end of every board from a real dead tree
that I have ever used has end grain on it. I don't find it's looks
any more apalling than the ends of my fingers as compared to their
tops. Course if the ends of my fingers have been engaged in rhinoplastic
exploration that analogy doesn't apply.
Also, end grain returns
do not swell up and fall off when rained on, do not need nails, do
not need putty, and do not get knocked off by abuse. Indeed, end grain
stool horns can be screwed from beneath up into casing legs to improve
the fit. It also prevents the tradesmen climbing through the window
and sitting on the stool for lunch (when you are not there to yell
at them) from ruining a good fit.
This picture shows
a stool horn probably 1/2" longer than customary. It was done
for a reason I have long forgotten. But it could not have been run
this long with mitered returns without looking totally ludicrous.
Besides, milled returns
are faster and easier. And when something is Better, Faster, and Cheaper,
I try to do it that way instead of a way that is Crummier, Slower,
and More Expensive.
If you have any questions,
please ask Gary Katz. His
website is loaded with great illustrated articles on trim techniques,
tool reviews and articles. Best ask him at the jlconline finish carpentry
But if you have answers,
please notify me immediately at my email address, firstname.lastname@example.org
Here is a link to
our video index. A high speed connection is necessary for viewing.
One of the videos shows my technique for coping difficult crown molding
with a jig saw NOT outfitted with a collins coping foot. It is 8 minutes
long and may take a while to load. As usual "No fees, No registration,
No cookies". Coping
difficult 45 degree Crown.