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I have two pieces of maple veneer plywood (3/4" thick) that I want to put together with pocket holes (controversial, I know, just hear me out). I have a Mullark pocket hole jig that I am clamping to the wood. I have all the settings right. My problem is that the jig is making a whole mess of the veneer. First, it breaks a lot of the wood, second, the hole cannot fit the regular coarse pocket hole screw inside, and so third, I cannot put in a wood plug in any way it looks good. What am I doing wrong? pocket holepocket hole with screw Also, my jig works fine with pine.

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I'm not familiar with that jig but did a quick google search to take a look. Is it this one?

enter image description here

First, you need to set the depth on the jig to the thickness of the board. Measure the thickness, don't just go by the named dimensions of the wood, they are often not the same. This will position the hole properly so that the screw head sits below the surface of the panel.

Two, you then will set your stop collar on the drill bit so you drill the proper depth of the hole. Your manual should give you instructions on how to set both depth and the stop collar. Read it.

As far as the tearout, the bit has to be sharp, and make sure you have your drill at full speed and take it slow. Might do well to put some painters tape on the surface of the panel to help with tear out. If you do this, be sure to set the depth with the tape in place.

Practice all of this on some scrap wood to get the setup correct.

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  • Yes, that's the one! I noticed that, if I put one screw through the pocket hole, it doesn't come out right in the middle of the board but higher, which suggests the drill bit is not going deep enough, which would exain why the screw just sits on the edge and doesn't really go in the "pocket". My bit may not be sharp enough. Thank you so much for your help!
    – Daltoniana
    Nov 28, 2023 at 21:52
  • The depth of the drill bit will affect whether the screw head goes below the surface of the board. The thickness which you set on the jig will affect where the screw comes out of on the other side. Always use test pieces to make sure everything is set up right before you do anything with the actual pieces.
    – LarryBud
    Nov 29, 2023 at 0:16
  • Clamp the jig to the edge of the board first so that you can see where the bit will travel through the board. Then set the collar on the bit to stop it where it needs to. The tearing of the veneer looks to me like your drill is too slow.
    – Huesmann
    Nov 29, 2023 at 13:49

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