What is a Lap Joint

The term lap joint comes from the process of overlapping two pieces to join them. Lap joints are one of the most common joints used in cabinet making, and there are four main types of lap joints: half lap, mitred half lap, cross lap, and dovetail lap. Each of the four main lap joints have their own specific strengths, and cabinet makers will choose which lap joint to use based on needs and design of the cabinet they are making.

All lap joints fall into two distinct categories: Full and Half. Whereas full laps leave each joining piece completely intact, half laps can be used to make each piece thinner and preserve the original thickness of the piece when joined. Half laps are the more common type of lap joint since they create a joint that is just as strong and durable joint while maintaining a uniform thickness throughout.