|Project by BRAVOGOLFTANGO||posted 01-29-2013 05:34 AM||9119 views||25 times favorited||18 comments|
Built this 3/8” 4-pin Dowel Jig out of 1” oak scraps, 1/2” steel tubing for the guides and 1/4” alum rods for the dowel spacer guides. I wanted to try something different than tongue & groove for my fourth storage bench lids.
Designed the jig on Sketchup and threw it together in an evening. I have since replaced the tap-in pronged T-Nuts with screw in type t-nuts which hold up much better. It works fantastic, my first trials required some tweaking, I didn’t
have the 3/8” (1/2 tubing) exactly dimensioned from the edge on each side. Reworked it to 5/16” on each side and it works wonders now. Aligning the guides was really tough on a Craftsman benchtop drill press, they are nearly perfectly vertically aligned with one being off less than 1/64” of an inch which hasn’t made a difference with the dowels thus far.
It was a fun project to build, not really a dowel fan so far, but I just wanted to see if it could be done. Oh yeah the cool thing is I made this for my most popular project mediums, starting with dead-stopping the fence (fully closed I guess) it’s setup for 3/4” material which I use a lot and scribed for centerline and then it’s adjustable to whatever sized medium from there. I have a woodworking auto-adjusting clamp ordered which is a little easier than the F-Style clamps. I slotted then grooved the base underside @3/8” deep and 3/4” wide for the fence slide.
Funny part – I had just finished watching “Conan the Barbarian” for the 20th time and decided to go back to the shop and finish this jig, well having seen the steel working going on in the foretold barbaric movie, decided I’d DIY harden the carbon steel 1/2”/3/8” tubing. So I set all four guides (prior jig insertion) on a stainless platform and heated them with my MAP-GAS to a bright red, then placed them in 30 wt motor oil to temper. Haha, honestly I don’t know if I made them harder or tempered them, but they were pitch black now and the look on my wife’s face coming into the garage seeing smoke and fire from nearly molten metal in oil was priceless :)...
This jigs sea-trials were successful on my wife’s custom storage bench I designed for her.