LumberJocks

Finally, I can make dowels

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Review by LJackson posted 03-06-2015 04:04 AM 4803 views 0 times favorited 9 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Finally, I can make dowels Finally, I can make dowels Finally, I can make dowels Click the pictures to enlarge them

I have been trying to make my own device for making dowels, following some ideas I picked up on YouTube. These attempts have not gone over very well (read, epic fail). So, I had given up and instead purchased this fine product.

To be thorough, I purchased the master set, which includes all of the inserts needed to create dowels from 1/4” to 1” in 1/16” increments. There are quite a bit of steps involved in setting it up for a particular size, and several trials are necessary, cutting off the portion you’ve tried, until you get the final, well rounded dowel. So, it seems to me that when I want to start making dowel, I should make a lot of it at a time.

The last picture shows my first attempt, which was done with pine, that wasn’t cut accurately to size, and was probably way too long, and wasn’t braced as they suggested as it came out the other end. So, yea, there are some rough spots on the dowel, but I have plenty of room for improvement.

I give it five stars, as it is clearly a high quality tool. Oh, one minor issue I had was when tightening the blade guide after setting the depth. If you tighten it too hard, when you loosen it, you can loosen the whole blade holder too, which then requires you to re-set the blade’s position as if you had removed it for sharpening. Annoying the first time, but then I realized that I didn’t have to snug it down so darn tight.




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LJackson

295 posts in 1740 days



9 comments so far

View jumbojack's profile

jumbojack

1685 posts in 2771 days


#1 posted 03-06-2015 01:44 PM

$300 for a dowel maker that is a lot of dowels.

-- Made in America, with American made tools....Shopsmith

View gfadvm's profile

gfadvm

14940 posts in 2836 days


#2 posted 03-06-2015 02:34 PM

jumbojack, You and I think a lot alike!

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View kapanen's profile

kapanen

121 posts in 2928 days


#3 posted 03-06-2015 03:43 PM

When purchasing dowels, we all know that they are not consistent in their dimensions. Having some kind of jig to correct this short coming, not only allows for precise dimensioning of the stock but also allows for them to made out of species that are not offered for purchase.

If work requires precision to a certain degree, and or dowels made out of species not offered, than their is only two options available, make your own jig or buy one already made and tested.

-- "Art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life"....Pablo Picasso

View LJackson's profile

LJackson

295 posts in 1740 days


#4 posted 03-06-2015 04:29 PM

Yes, jumbojack, it is expensive, and I’m not one to spend like a drunken sailor. My 6” Jet jointer was $300 off of Craig’s List. But, I figured, with all of the time I spent trying to make my own, and failing, that I put in more than $300 worth of effort already. I just wanted something that worked and to be done with it. So, I cut my losses.

My plan is to be building stuff primarily with either pocket-hole or dowel joinery. I also purchased the Jess-Em doweling jig for aligning the dowel holes in two pieces of wood.

Here is my comparison. A lot of people rave about the Festool Domino. It seems to me that dowel joinery is very much the same as that; it’s just round instead of wide. But, the Festool costs over $1,000. That is just crazy expensive for a hand tool. And, you have to buy the dominoes. At least, I know of no domino maker, but I suppose the clever person could make one. So, I have a cheaper, but still effective, solution.

View jakep_82's profile

jakep_82

105 posts in 2452 days


#5 posted 03-06-2015 05:55 PM

A domino is just a version of loose tenon joinery. People have been making loose tenon joints for a long time with routers and simple jigs. Where the Domino wins is with speed, and ease of use. Dowels and loose tenons can make joints comparable to a domino, but not as fast. Making a loose tenon requires nothing more than a router table with a round over bit.

View MIKE MCKEEVER's profile

MIKE MCKEEVER

19 posts in 2257 days


#6 posted 03-06-2015 06:39 PM

JUST MY OPINION, I HAVE THE SAME KIT AND LIKE IT. YES, I ALSO HAVE THE ROUTER TABLE AND ROUND OVER BITS. THE DOWL MAKER IS QUICK AND WORKS FOR GREAT FOR ME.

View lj61673's profile

lj61673

261 posts in 2546 days


#7 posted 03-06-2015 08:01 PM

”Here is my comparison. A lot of people rave about the Festool Domino. It seems to me that dowel joinery is very much the same as that; it’s just round instead of wide.

Actually that is not true. Dominoes, like loose tenons and tenons, have far more long grain to long grain glue area than any dowel could. That’s what gives them superior strength. Having a plan to use only pocket joinery or dowels, while each have their place, is not the way to increase your joinery skills. It is also not the way to make pieces that will last generations if that is your intention. to fabricate

In addition you just spent $300 plus the cost of the hardwoods for your dowels. Now the time and labor involved to fabricate them and you’re pretty close to the cost of a Festool Domino DFT-500 (which by the way is $850 not $1000)

View jumbojack's profile

jumbojack

1685 posts in 2771 days


#8 posted 03-08-2015 03:14 AM

I am by no means capping on your purchase. I use tons of dowels, I’ve got quite a bucket of them. I rarely leave an outlet without purchasing a couple. Yep I’ve spent WAY over $300 on dowels in my life. I’ve even tried making them myself and wrote it off as folly. Could I use one of those handy dandy contraptions? Yeah I could. Would I (me) thrown down 3 for one. The wife would have to hit on one of those stinking scratchers she is always bringing home.
May all your dowels be true and fuzz free.

-- Made in America, with American made tools....Shopsmith

View builtinbkyn's profile

builtinbkyn

2636 posts in 1087 days


#9 posted 12-06-2015 05:03 AM

Multiple dowels are stronger than a domino. Dowels can also be used not only as a means of connection but can also provide some added feature to the design, should one choose.

Heck, the guy was just giving a review of a tool that a good company produces. They produce them because there must be some kind of demand or they wouldn’t waste their time and resources making them. I bought the cheaper version from Lie – Nielsen – the one that uses a hammer and a heavy steel plate that cost 55 bucks. Probably a lot for a steel plate. I find it funny how there’s no shortage of people here who want to tell others how to spend their money and their time.

”Here is my comparison. A lot of people rave about the Festool Domino. It seems to me that dowel joinery is very much the same as that; it’s just round instead of wide.

Actually that is not true. Dominoes, like loose tenons and tenons, have far more long grain to long grain glue area than any dowel could. That s what gives them superior strength. Having a plan to use only pocket joinery or dowels, while each have their place, is not the way to increase your joinery skills. It is also not the way to make pieces that will last generations if that is your intention. to fabricate

In addition you just spent $300 plus the cost of the hardwoods for your dowels. Now the time and labor involved to fabricate them and you re pretty close to the cost of a Festool Domino DFT-500 (which by the way is $850 not $1000)

- lj61673


-- Bill, Yo!......in Brooklyn & Steel City :)

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