Doweling jig preferences????

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Forum topic by Bill White posted 06-18-2014 09:50 PM 2133 views 0 times favorited 7 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Bill White

5128 posts in 4162 days

06-18-2014 09:50 PM

Topic tags/keywords: jig

Is there a self-centering doweling jig that will allow centering of materials wider than 3/4” to 1”?
I often use table legs that can be a wide as 4” at the top, and find most jigs are kinda wimpy when it comes to workin’ with dowels that might need to be set on these thicknesses.
They’ll work well on aprons, but sorta “suck” when tryin’ to set up for thicker legs.
Ideas are welcome.


7 replies so far

View TiggerWood's profile


271 posts in 1808 days

#1 posted 06-18-2014 11:27 PM

I use the $15 Joint Crafter Dowel Jig from Menards. I may have to clamp the jig to my work but I have never had a problem making the joints I was aiming for.

View Loren's profile


10477 posts in 3849 days

#2 posted 06-18-2014 11:36 PM

View Loren's profile


10477 posts in 3849 days

#3 posted 06-18-2014 11:42 PM

I have the heavier Jessem jig. It’s not self-centering but it’s
pretty cool for furniture and casework joinery. It can do
a flush corner joint, which most jigs don’t do.

I also have a Dowl-it but haven’t used it since I got the

If you’re serious about doweling and have the space, keep an
eye out for a used horizontal boring machine. I have one
with pneumatic plunge. It can’t do a cabinet corner joint
though, just frame joints. It can drill table legs I suppose.

View TechRedneck's profile


769 posts in 3058 days

#4 posted 06-18-2014 11:51 PM

+1 for the Jessem jig.

It costs a bit more but is a heavy solid quality tool. I use it quite often, even for large projects. Once you get used to how it actually works, it can become your “go to” joinery tool for those small tables. I have a mortising machine but don’t use it as much as the jessem.

Now a good M&T joint is hard to beat for high stress joints, but in my research and experience, dowels make an excellent long lasting and strong joint taking a lot of force to break.

As always you still need to have flat, square stock to start with, but the Jessem allows you to get repeatable dowel holes in almost any size stock. You will find that if you want to replace a part or mess up a joint, it will allow you to reproduce the exact fit with a new piece. (Don’t ask how I know this!)

-- Mike.... West Virginia. "Man is a tool using animal. Without tools he is nothing, with tools he is all.". T Carlyle

View BJODay's profile


527 posts in 2144 days

#5 posted 06-19-2014 02:29 AM

I have 2 dowl-it jigs. They have always worked well for me.


View lcurrent's profile


125 posts in 4017 days

#6 posted 06-20-2014 12:47 AM

This jig does stock from 1/4 to 6 inch mortise or dowel without changing anything

-- lcurrent ( It's not a mistake till you run out of wood )

View Marcus's profile


1163 posts in 2221 days

#7 posted 06-20-2014 01:39 AM

Jessem jig fan as well.

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