I’m trying to get things ready for when I start to build my workbench. I plan to use Drawboring to pin my tenons on the bench. To help align the holes for the pins I needed a Drawbore Pin (a machinist would call them drift pins). For woodworkers the drift pin generally has a handle, to better wiggle it around. I had recently read an article by Christopher Schwarz on Drawbore Pins, which these are based on. You can read his article for a complete description and explanation of the steps. Over all it is very easy to do.
I left work early today and thought I would knock them out. I had some success and a failure (more about the failure later). Christopher suggested picking up a cheap set of punches and alignment tools from Sears. I dropped by Sears and found the set he talked about in his article, but there was a 13 piece set on sale for only a $1 more ($8.00).
I had some Maple in the scrap pile, so I milled up a piece 1.25” x 1.25”. There was enough for the 2 handles.
I then needed to bore a hole in the center to accept the pin. I couldn’t lower my drill press table far enough to be able to drill the hole. I had just gotten some bits for my brace, off of eBay. So I got medieval on it.
Next I needed to taper the handle. I did that on the band saw, and cleaned it up with a hand plane.
The next step was to chamfer the edges, to make it more comfortable to hold. I used my block plane for this. I put a couple scrap piece of wood in the vise, to hold it in place while I worked on the handle.
The next step was to heat the pin up and drive the handle home. Now for the failure part. I’m not sure if you tell from the picture blow, but there is a slight bend in the top part of the pin. I didn’t notice this until it was too late.
That bend was enough to cause the handle to split. I will try and straighten it out and try again. I don’t have a metal vise. So in the first picture above, I drilled hole in a board. I then found some washers to put on the pin, to keep it from being pounded into the wood while I attached the handle. It worked really well.
Now for the success part of the day. The small pin went together without any problems. The handle feels really good in your hand. I’ll redo the large pin tomorrow.