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Old 11-30-2010, 05:18 PM   #1
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Default Top Tip - DIY dowel making - ingeneniously simple way to make good quality dowels

For a good while I've been looking for a quick simple way to make my own dowels mainly for use in furniture construction but also in toy making. I don't own a lathe and don't need the added distraction of one in the shop - I have enough trouble getting things done as it is! Up to this past weekend I'd settled on making a couple of jigs for my router and was pretty happy to use them - even made a small bench mounted router table for the purpose - that is until this past weekend when I accidentally stumbled on this YouTube video by a Japanese guy.

YouTube - ??2???????I make a round stick with the sawblade .

To be honest my first thought on seeing this guy's technique was 'jeeze' that is pretty crude!' but yesterday i was desperate for a few 3/8" dowel pegs and thought I'd give it a try. It took me about 10 mins to make the first jig shown in the video and cut a dozen square section rods on the table saw. It took me much less than 10 mins to produce a dozen pretty accurate 2 ft long lengths of 3/8" dowel. Amazing!

I'm so sold on this idea that I'm going to replicate the wooden block the guy uses in 1" thick steel and include holes for the 3 dowel sizes I use most often 1/4", 3/8" and 1/2". Using steel will get around the potential wear of the holes drilled in a wooden block. Also when I made my dowels I didn't use a heavy hacksaw blade to cut them but a medium tooth jigsaw blade instead which does a much smoother job on smaller dowels. I also found that if you feed the rod very quickly the cutter produces a spiral groove down the dowel which is great for holding the glue in jointing pegs - an added bonus!

Below the video there is a link to the guys home page which is full of text in Japanese but it also includes loads of images. Scrolling down the page you can see how he chucked up a length of wood using a spade bit and a hose clamp for when he made the large dowel in the video. Another neat idea.

This is definitely a winning top tip for me and the only thing wrong with it is that i didn't think of it first! LOL!

Jim in Mexico

Logic will get you from A to B. Imagination will take you everywhere.
- Albert Einstein

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Old 11-30-2010, 06:09 PM   #2
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I found my way to his videos yesterday. Amazing what that man can do with very little investment but a WHOLE lot of ingenuity.
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Old 11-30-2010, 06:16 PM   #3
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Jim - Now that is a first for me too. Pretty interesting. Kudos to you for giving it a try. I think your steel jig is a very good idea. As they say necessity is the mother of invention! Cool!!!
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Old 11-30-2010, 06:34 PM   #4
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great tip Jim. I must give it a try. Not yet though too cold to get in the shop. 9" of snow and -4 degrees C
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Old 11-30-2010, 06:45 PM   #5
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Cool. I've seen a guy make a dowel with a bandsaw and now with a drill. Why did I buy a lathe?

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Old 11-30-2010, 06:45 PM   #6
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Now that is SWEEEEEET.........thanks for the link Jim.
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Old 11-30-2010, 07:41 PM   #7
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Now that is smart ....thanks Jim!!


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Old 12-01-2010, 12:24 AM   #8
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That's cool,Jim.Thanks for the link.

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Old 12-01-2010, 08:44 AM   #9
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That is great and gives me ideas I wonder if it works with hardwoods when you get set up jim will you give it a try and let us know.

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Old 12-01-2010, 12:18 PM   #10
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I got lost for a while there looking at allll the neat stuff he makes.
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