I looked for a 3/4 dowel in the shop and the cupboard was bare. I went to my local hardware store and was resigned to having a “whitewood” dowel but whoa, there were dowels there now which resemble poplar. They are straight and true and kinda greenish. I was delighted.
I thought I would be way clever here and bore three wells in the handle, fill them with glue, and then insert the handle the rest of the way and rotate it until the glue spread. It was a great idea, it just didn’t happen to work very well. So I bored and drove in two 1/4” dowels between the handle and the mane. Pared flush, sanded, they’re fine, and the handle is secure.
Here’s a shot of the body, coming together.
The mane, tail and forelock are attached with dowels. Don’t let this drive you crazy. Just use dowel centers to transfer the mark, overbore the holes, and use epoxy or polyurethane glue and mind the squeezeout.
(To overbore the holes, first drill the proper dowel size and use the dowel center, then expand the hole(s) as needed going up a drill size each time.)
-- "...in his brain, which is as dry as the remainder biscuit after a voyage, he hath strange places cramm'd with observation, the which he vents in mangled forms." --Shakespeare, "As You Like It"