Make an Adjustable Dowel Jig

I love dowel woodwork because it's strong and easy to do, but I didn't love my dowel jig so I decided to make one!

Cut some 3/4 ”plywood to the sizes indicated on the template (leave the fence long to help with fastening).

Cut out the mold and use spray adhesive to temporarily place it on the plywood.

There is a centerline on the model. Before doing anything, draw these lines to the side of the template with a pen.

We hope you enjoy watching this video about Making an Adjustable Doweling Jig for Joinery

Source: 3x3Custom - Tamar

Mark all holes with a punch so that the bit does not shift during drilling.

Drill all holes in the drill or with a hand drill.

The fence piece will be secured to the template with a 1 / 4-20 screw.

So, drill a blocked hole large enough to put the screw in the hole in the middle of the guide.

You can cut this piece to size now, just too much time has been left to help with fixation while drilling.

Going back to the main part of the template, there are two spaces that need to be made.

An open slot at the top and a closed slot at the bottom.

The open slot can be easily cut with the band saw or jigsaw.

The closed slot is a bit trickier.

I made this slot by making several dip cuts in the router table with a 1/4 ”bit.

You can also do this by drilling several holes along where the groove should be and then using a file to clean it.

Or you can cut it like the slit and stick it into a filler piece. Or you can use a puzzle, a jigsaw, a chisel, in many different ways….

Once the lower slit is cut, refine the shape of the handle according to the model or to your liking.

I did it with the bandsaw, the puzzle would work too.

In order for this jig to last a long time, I decided to use a metal tube where the drill will go. This will prevent wear.

A 1/2 ”steel tube with 1/16” walls has a 3/8 ”inside diameter, making it perfect for 3/8” bushing joinery.

It's a really cool tool, but a saw would work too.

I scraped the outside of the tube a bit and then put epoxy in the 1/2 ”center hole in the main part of the template.

There will be two 3/8 "studs in the main part of the jig and two 1/4" studs in the fence part of the jig.

And that's it!

After the glue has dried I just sanded the edges to make it comfortable to hold, now it's ready to go!

Is that how it works ...

The top of the template has three holes.

The middle hole with the steel tube and the two outer holes with the bushings.

Place these pins around the edge of a workpiece, then rotate the template until the pins touch opposite faces.

Since these pins are evenly spaced from the center hole, this twisting action will always ensure that the center hole of the template lines up with the center of the edge of the plate you want to drill.

Step 1

Drill several holes in the center of the edge of your workpiece.

Step 2

Adjust the fence to the correct width of your material.

To do this, attach the fence piece to the template with a screw, washer, and knob.

The two dowels around the bolt will ensure that the fence piece does not twist and that the top remains square.

I added some epoxy to the screw so it can be fully tightened with the button.

To attach the fence, put a dowel in one of the holes you made in step 1 and place the template on top of the dowel through the metal tube in the center.

Then adjust the guide and lock it when it comes in contact with the face of the plate.

Step 3

Drill the corresponding holes in the face of the coupling piece.

To do this, place the first plate on top of the plate you want to pierce.

Place the pegs in the holes you have already made and place the template around them using the notch at the top of the template.

Make sure the edges of both pieces are lined up and side-aligned and make sure the guide on the template is touching the edge of the board you want to drill, and then secure.

Once connected, simply loop the template around each peg on the number 1 board and drill!

The guide on the template is aligned so that the holes are the perfect distance from the edge of the board.

Placing the template around the guide pins of plate 1 using the notch will ensure that the holes line up with each other.

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Ok, That is all for now…

We hope that you enjoyed the content.

See you in the next post!

Images and project courtesy of 3x3Custom - Tamar

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