Reducing the diameter of a dowell

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Forum topic by bluekingfisher posted 465 days ago 798 views 2 times favorited 19 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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957 posts in 1481 days

465 days ago

I’ve just come in from the shop as I need a little LJ advice. I’m building a tablesaw blade holder and need some 5/8” dowell stock or rather slightly less than 5/8” to slip through the arbor hole of the blade.

I need eight 3/4” lenghts of stock which I was hoping to cut from a 2’ lenght of 3/4” dowell stock and wondered if there is a safe way of reducing the diameter from 3/4” to 5/8”.

I was thinking of using a stacked dado head, raising it slightly above the table then rotating the dowell at right angles across the spinning blade, raising the blade until the desired size is acheived. I’m not so sure however if this is safe or feasible solution?

Any thoughts anyone? I don’t need absolute circular perfection, just something to slip through the arbor hole.


Would it just be easier to admit defeat and use square stock with the edges chamfered??

Thanks in advance.


-- No one plans to fail, they just, just fail to plan

19 replies so far

View MrRon's profile


2401 posts in 1745 days

#1 posted 465 days ago

Just use 1/2” dowel.

View Rex B's profile

Rex B

304 posts in 752 days

#2 posted 465 days ago

Spin short pieces in the drill press like a lathe and take a file/rasp to it. Or use a chisel to make a makeshift pencil sharpener. Or, really, just do it the way you were talking about with the table saw. Clamp a piece of wood behind the dowel to prevent kickback; other than that it sounds safe.

-- Rex

View DKV's profile


3053 posts in 1005 days

#3 posted 465 days ago

Mrron has the obvious solution…

-- 2014 will be a different least for me it will.

View Mip's profile


294 posts in 579 days

#4 posted 465 days ago

Rex B has, what I think, the right answer in that you spin a short piece in the drill press and file it down. If you don’t have a drill press, use a hand held drill clamped to a table. If the hand held doesn’t have a 3/4” chuck, which I’m sure it doesn’t, thread a screw or bolt into the dowel end and chuck that into the drill. I wouldn’t use the table saw to do what you’re saying, I think it might be a little dangerous in my opinion.

View JR45's profile


517 posts in 814 days

#5 posted 465 days ago

You could make a 5/8 dowel plate and reduce the 3/4 stock you have available.

-- It always looks better when it's finished!

View HillbillyShooter's profile


3845 posts in 793 days

#6 posted 465 days ago

You should be able to find 5/8” dowel. Here’s the link to Woodcraft’s dowel selection in the US:

Otherwise, I’d either use the drill and reduce with a rasp or you could build an exotic jig and use a rabbiting bit in your router to reduce the diameter, such as a 1/16” rabbit for a 3/4” dowel or 3/16” rabbit for a 1” dowel (check out the jig I built and have used to crow or other wise route dowel, it’s the last four pictures:

-- John C. -- "Firearms are second only to the Constitution in importance; they are the peoples' liberty's teeth." George Washington

View Brandon's profile


4134 posts in 1453 days

#7 posted 465 days ago

They sell 5/8” dowels. I wouldn’t personally try any tricks on the TS. You might be interested in getting/making a dowel plate. Lie Nielsen makes one that is pretty sweet.

-- "hold fast to that which is good"

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


14402 posts in 2177 days

#8 posted 465 days ago

I have some 5/8 scrap left from my daughter’s shoe tree. Probably cost more to import to England than they are worth ;-( You can have them if they are worth the cost of shipping.

-- "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View REO's profile


542 posts in 575 days

#9 posted 465 days ago

Jonathan hit the nail square with his suggestion! terrific post!

View gfadvm's profile


9545 posts in 1191 days

#10 posted 465 days ago

Jonathan to the rescue!!! AGAIN I gotta try that tomorrow! I’m very excited!!!

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

View jumbojack's profile


1131 posts in 1125 days

#11 posted 465 days ago

Yeah but can you come up with a way to turn 5/8 to 3/4. Now that would be a tip I’d like to see.

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

View FirehouseWoodworking's profile


618 posts in 1774 days

#12 posted 465 days ago


I agree with Jonathan’s recommendation, but with a caveat. I would do it on a router table or shaper with a dado bit. Using a dado blade in a saw may leave grooves in your dowels, just as they do in the bottom of dados. A router bit wouldn’t leave such marks. Don’t know if that is important to your project or not. Good luck.


-- Dave; Lansing, Kansas

View patron's profile


12843 posts in 1842 days

#13 posted 465 days ago

if you do the saw dado thing
just make sure the ‘outfeed’ side is higher than the ‘infeed’ side
by the difference in the dowel height
as it gets smaller after the saw cut
so it doesn’t drop suddenly
and catch in the saw
as it leaves the ‘infeed’ side

or better still
here is stefangs way

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View oldnovice's profile


3255 posts in 1869 days

#14 posted 465 days ago

powow, why did you write this about gaming on this web site? It is totally out of place!

-- "I never met a board I didn't like!"

View patron's profile


12843 posts in 1842 days

#15 posted 465 days ago

hes a spammer
been doing it for a couple of blogs

just hit the flag button
then again
and mark as spam
he will be removed

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

showing 1 through 15 of 19 replies

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