Step 6: Cut the latch

cutting the latch-plate mortise
Photo: David Carmack
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Using a chisel, cut along the outline as deep as the plate is thick. Then chisel to the same depth every 1/8 inch between the top and bottom of the plate outline.

Turn the chisel bevel-side down and remove the waste, working from the middle out. The plate should be flush with the door edge when inserted into the finished mortise.

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    Tools List

    • drill
      Electric drill or cordless drill-driver
    • spade bit
      7/8-inch spade bit
    • keyhole saw
      2 1/8-inch hole saw
    • 3/16 masonry bit
      3/32-inch drill bit
    • Phillips screwdriver
      Phillips-head screwdriver
    • 16-foot tape measure
      Tape measure
    • chisel
      1-inch chisel
    • utility knife
      Utility knife
    • hammer
      Hammer
    • combination square
      Combination square
    • Awl

    Shopping List

    1. RADIUS-CORNERED LATCH PLATE

    for factory-mortised doors



    2. LATCH ASSEMBLY WITH SQUARE-CORNERED LATCH PLATE

    3. CARDBOARD TEMPLATE

    included with lockset



    4. RADIUS-CORNERED STRIKE PLATE

    for factory-mortised jambs



    5. SQUARE-CORNERED STRIKE PLATE

    6. DOORKNOBS

    7. WOOD SHIMS