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Forum topic by bullhead1 posted 574 days ago 1228 views 0 times favorited 11 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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bullhead1

228 posts in 848 days


574 days ago

The latest discussion on the Dowelmax that I could find is a year ago. I currently use a lot of pocket hole joinery but want to start using more hidden joint methods. I’m kind of a type A personatlity and don’t have the patience for M&T joints and after researching believe that dowel joints would fit the bill for me. I almost bought the self centering jig from Rockler but hesitated because of the limitation on width. Than I thought I would have to buy both the regular sized one (with a max of 2 inch) for about $65 and the larger one (for $84) to do 4 inch timbers. I have cheap access to 4×4 and 4×6 cedar and douglas fir to make outdoor benches and furniture and could see a need for both. Additionally I have requests from those big money making projects from relatives for a couple of beds where I could use both sizes. Then buy a decent bit and stop collar and I’m halfway to the Dowelmax cost. From what I can tell, the Dowelmax offers a lot more versatility than a simple self centering jig plus added precision.
Ok, it’s pretty obvious that I’ve convinced myself but I really want to know if the Dowelmax offers that much more flexabilty. Iv’e never spent $300 on a jig before (I haven’t done the dovetail thing yet either). So if your a Dowelmax user please pass on your positive and/or negative comments about his jig or if you have one that is collecting dust and want to give it a new home please chime in.


11 replies so far

View FirehouseWoodworking's profile

FirehouseWoodworking

622 posts in 1872 days


#1 posted 574 days ago

Here’s a few discussions and reviews on the Dowelmax:

http://www.hdtvtalk.com/threads/8186-Dowelmax-Doweling-System

http://forum.canadianwoodworking.com/showthread.php?20668-Dowelmax-vs-Kreg-vs-Biscuit-Jointer/page1

From a personal point of view, I’m still stuck on my Stanley No. 59 Dowelling Jigs – ALL FOUR OF THEM! I have them set up for different dowels and different wood thicknesses. I bought them off Craigslist over the years for next to nothing. If you’re patient, it could save you a lot of money.

Cheers!

-- Dave; Lansing, Kansas

View NiteWalker's profile

NiteWalker

2707 posts in 1176 days


#2 posted 573 days ago

The dowelmax is a great jig. Jessem makes one that’s great too, but not as much $$ as the dowel max.
If you got the rockler jig, you wouldn’t need both the 2” and 4” versions; you’d only need the 4” as it works with thinner stock as well.

-- He who dies with the most tools... dies with the emptiest wallet.

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bullhead1

228 posts in 848 days


#3 posted 573 days ago

I wonderer about the Rockler 4” so thanks for the info. I’ve been burn’t by that “it’s the same” for less money before. Is there things you can do with the Dowelex that you can’t do with the Jessem? Is it easeir to index with the Dowelex?

View Loren's profile

Loren

7234 posts in 2247 days


#4 posted 573 days ago

I have the Jessem. It’s a very good jig. It can do flush corner
carcase joints easily, frame joints easily, and it can do recessed/offset
furniture frame joints easily. It cannot do angled case joints at
all. It can do frame miters. It cannot do compound frame miters.

The Dowelmax probably has similar strengths and limitations.

-- http://lawoodworking.com

View NiteWalker's profile

NiteWalker

2707 posts in 1176 days


#5 posted 573 days ago

Honestly, I’d test the dowel waters first with a cheaper jig. I bought this one from rockler when I first got into dowel joinery. It’s certainly not as versatile as one f the other jigs and for best results you’d need dowel centers too, but it works and I wasn’t out a lot of $$ if I decided dowels weren’t for me.

FWIW, dowels have their place, but I don’t rely on them exclusively.

If I was considering a jig specific to joinery and wanted my money’s worth, I’d invest in a festool domion (which I still plan to).

-- He who dies with the most tools... dies with the emptiest wallet.

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bullhead1

228 posts in 848 days


#6 posted 573 days ago

Thanks NiteWalker but I know out of the shoot I want to have offset capabilty. Loren, does the Jessem have an angle attachment with it like the DowelMax?

View BHolcombe's profile

BHolcombe

83 posts in 674 days


#7 posted 572 days ago

I use it regularly, it’s a great tool and has saved me alot of time and probably some money as well. Most importantly i feel it has helped improve my simple joinery.

View Loren's profile

Loren

7234 posts in 2247 days


#8 posted 572 days ago

The Dowelmax has an angle attachment with it?

First I’ve heard of that.

If you want unrestricted compound joinery quick,
easy and affordable, get a biscuit joiner.

-- http://lawoodworking.com

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bullhead1

228 posts in 848 days


#9 posted 572 days ago

Thanks for the feedback. Loren, what i want to use it for a biscuit joiner won’t work. I have access to one if I need it. Thanks for the lead on Jessem, I went to their website and found they have a new jig for less money. It is a little different in that its not self centering but has a kit that comes with 1/4, 3/8 and 1/2 guides with a introductory price of $160. I pulled the trigger and ordered it. Can’t wait to get it and try it out. The boss is out of town today so I took advantage of Rocklers free shipping and bought some clamps to use with it. I’m doing my share to keep the economy going. Go Vikings and AP!

View Loren's profile

Loren

7234 posts in 2247 days


#10 posted 572 days ago

View NiteWalker's profile

NiteWalker

2707 posts in 1176 days


#11 posted 572 days ago

You did good, according to jessem, the new jig has some new features and is the better jig.
Let us know how it works out for you.

-- He who dies with the most tools... dies with the emptiest wallet.

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