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Handy tools #2: Little froe and doweling plate

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Blog entry by Dave Polaschek posted 02-23-2018 01:32 AM 1398 reads 1 time favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 1: Miter Jack Part 2 of Handy tools series Part 3: Mirror for cutting dovetails »

I put a handle on a big froe last year, but I’ve been wanting to make my own dowels lately, and that’s too big for splitting off small chunks of wood for dowels. So I asked my friend Jeff for a smaller tool. The result was this little froe.

When combined with a doweling plate from Lie-Nielsen, I can split a piece of oak or ash off a scrap, run it down the sizes to 3/16” and trim it to length in under ten minutes. I did a half-dozen this evening to peg the French cleat into my rasp and file till in under an hour, and that included the time to drill six 3/16” holes, too.

-- Dave - Minneapolis



6 comments so far

View Ron Aylor's profile

Ron Aylor

2634 posts in 672 days


#1 posted 02-23-2018 06:52 AM

Sweet! It’s nice to have a blacksmith as a friend. I wish I was in closer proximity to my cousin Erin in Maryland … one of the best blacksmiths I know!

-- Ron in Lilburn, Georgia.  https://ronaylor.wordpress.com

View Dave Polaschek's profile

Dave Polaschek

2196 posts in 607 days


#2 posted 02-23-2018 07:04 AM

It sure is, Ron. Hope you’re enjoying Alaska and getting to see the northern lights.

-- Dave - Minneapolis

View Ron Aylor's profile

Ron Aylor

2634 posts in 672 days


#3 posted 02-23-2018 07:35 AM

Oh we did! Unfortunately, we are on our way back … board in forty minutes!

-- Ron in Lilburn, Georgia.  https://ronaylor.wordpress.com

View Dave Polaschek's profile

Dave Polaschek

2196 posts in 607 days


#4 posted 02-23-2018 07:43 AM

Safe travels, buddy! Don’t need to wave when you go past, we’re getting snow here.

-- Dave - Minneapolis

View doubleDD's profile

doubleDD

7437 posts in 2068 days


#5 posted 02-23-2018 01:47 PM

I’ll give you a lot of credit for this Dave. That’s hands on working. I buy mine. I’m lazy.

-- Dave, Downers Grove, Il. -------- When you run out of ideas, start building your dreams.

View Dave Polaschek's profile

Dave Polaschek

2196 posts in 607 days


#6 posted 02-23-2018 02:12 PM

Thanks, Dave. I bought a hundred 1” long ¼” and ⅜” but I always end up wanting longer or a different diameter. And this way I get to pick oak or walnut or ash or whatever for the dowels. I still use factory ones when they’ll work, but I’ve been building up stock of handmade ones too. The hinge pins in my box for the swap might end up being hand-made.

For me, the journey is a big part of the fun, and even if I don’t have time for a “real project” in the shop, knocking out a few dowels when I come home from a crappy day at work helps relax me.

-- Dave - Minneapolis

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