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Ahh, the wedge drives from the other side. That makes perfect sense now. Any pulling (spreading) forces would just drive the wedge deeper. Genius.Once a long wedge is driven in on top of it, it literally CAN'T go anywhere. It's probably the strongest "tie" joint in timber framing to keep two posts from spreading. Plus I'll probably drive a couple, three pegs in there for good measure. Everything in timber framing is overkill.
To expand on that, once the dovetail drops into place, there's a 1-1/2" slot along the top of it (it had to be there to get the widest part of the dovetail, which is 1-1/2" wider than its narrowest point). That slot gets the long wedge.
View attachment 406583
I cleaned out my great grandmothers barn a year or so ago, it was built with the house in the 1820's. Still didn't leak....100'x50'IF you keep the wood dry, yes. timber frame structures in Japan are easily 500 years+ old.
my main house is 300 years, and really the only issues were rotted sills, and a few places that got wet