The Greatest Dowel Jigs for Your Workshop in 2021

Best Dowel Jig


Dowel joints are extra frequent than you would possibly suppose. They’re utilized in every kind of wooden joinery, from cupboard frames to cabinet drawers to tabletops. With a high quality dowel jig, even comparatively inexperienced woodworkers can produce exact joints shortly and simply.

Nonetheless, the market is crowded with merchandise, and selecting the perfect dowel jig for a selected process can pose a problem. This information explains the vital technical and sensible elements that woodworkers of all ability ranges ought to take into account earlier than they purchase a dowel jig. A assessment of a few of in the present day’s high choices accessible seems subsequent.

  1. BEST OVERALL: wolfcraft 3751405 Dowel Professional Doweling Jig Equipment
  2. BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK: AUTOTOOLHOME Woodworking Dowel Jig 1/4″ 5/16″ 3/8″
  3. BEST UPGRADE: Dowelmax Equipment Precision Engineered Becoming a member of System
  4. BEST DIY KIT: Milescraft 1309 DowelJigKit – Full Doweling Equipment
  5. BEST PRECISION: Jessem Mannequin 08350 Dowelling Jig Grasp Equipment
  6. BEST SELF-CENTERING: AUTOTOOLHOME Self Centering Doweling Jig Step Drill
  7. BEST NARROW STOCK: AUTOTOOLHOME Self Centering Doweling Jig Equipment
  8. BEST FOR CYLINDRICAL: Taytools Drill Information Dowel Equipment Jig with 6 Bushings
  9. BEST LIGHTWEIGHT: Huge Horn 19695 1/4″ Dowel Drilling Jig Equipment

Best Dowel Jig


What to Contemplate When Selecting the Greatest Dowel Jig

Dowel jigs can be found in many alternative sizes and shapes and ranging levels of complexity. The plethora of choices could make choosing the proper one tough. The next part seems to be at a number of vital concerns when purchasing for the perfect dowel jig for a variety of workshop duties.

Meant Use

Dowels are used to create various totally different joints: to affix boards at 90 levels of one another (on the corners or a T joint), for edge-to-edge joints (for making seats or tabletops, for instance), to make drawers and different carcasses, and to safe easy lapped joints on cupboard frames.

Whereas most dowel jigs supply a level of versatility, they is probably not appropriate for all joint varieties. Study the complete vary of capabilities supplied by a selected mannequin earlier than you buy one. Shopping for a primary dowel jig can lower your expenses initially, however skilled woodworkers might wish to put money into a extra versatile mannequin.

Dowel jigs are generally described as primary, intermediate, and superior, however this terminology will be deceptive. An inexperienced woodworker shouldn’t essentially go for a less complicated machine. Whereas the dowel jig might look simpler to make use of initially, it’d truly be tougher to arrange and lack the precision of a extra superior mannequin.

Bushing Measurement and Materials

The aim of a dowel jig is to drill correct holes in a chunk of wooden. Customers then match dowels into these holes and glue the challenge collectively. Whereas exceptions exist, the outlet for the dowel must be between one-third and one-half the thickness of the workpiece—any bigger and the outlet can weaken the joint.

To offer the mandatory versatility, producers sometimes supply various totally different bushes (the right identify for the drill information) with the acquisition. Fundamental dowel jigs often embrace one or two bushes; extra superior fashions might present as much as six. Widespread bush sizes, 3/16 inch, 1/4 inch, 5/16 inch, 3/8 inch, 7/16 inch, and 1/2 inch, match the broadly accessible dowels that are available economical packs of 100 or extra.

On low-cost dowel jigs, the bushes could also be manufactured from low-cost, easy-to-produce aluminum; nevertheless, the exhausting metal of a drill bit will put on it out finally. For many who use a dowel jig solely sometimes, this isn’t an issue, however common customers will get extra worth from a jig with longer-lasting hardened metal bushes.

Clamping Efficiency and Accuracy

Handheld dowel jigs supply excessive productiveness; nevertheless, the potential for motion all the time exists when drilling, which might trigger inaccuracies and destroy the job. Many dowel jigs are clamped securely in place to forestall motion from occurring. The clamping methodology, together with capability, varies amongst various kinds of jigs.

Entry-level dowel jigs would possibly require clamping, however the clamps usually aren’t included. A few of the higher dowel jigs clamp to either side of the workpiece. Not solely are these jigs straightforward to function, however their drill bush steadily will middle itself, which improves accuracy and in addition can enhance velocity.

Ease of Use

In precept, dowel joints operate in a simple method. As soon as the jig is securely clamped or held onto the workpiece, every dowel gap is created by drilling into the wooden. Ease of use turns into merely about how shortly the jig will be arrange and prepared for drilling.

Options like self-centering are a bonus for some woodworkers, as is a alternative of six totally different bushes. Nonetheless, those that often work with similar-size lumber might not want to vary bushes or accommodate totally different widths, in order that they don’t want a high-end mannequin. Whereas exact clamping is important for some duties, a low-cost handheld dowel jig is the fitting device for others. Consumers ought to take into account their meant use for the product when making their alternative.

Our Prime Picks

These high picks symbolize extremely targeted decisions to make it straightforward for woodworkers to search out the fitting mixture of efficiency and worth.

Best Dowel Jig Option: wolfcraft 3751405 Dowel Pro Doweling Jig Kit


Main jig maker Wolfcraft gives an answer that enables a brand new person to become familiar with dowel joints shortly whereas additionally offering the accuracy required by extra skilled woodworkers.

The Wolfcraft jig can create all of the frequent sorts of dowel joints: edge-to-edge, nook, and T joints. Self-clamping, it comes with hardened metal bushes for 1/4-inch, 5/16-inch, and three/8-inch dowels. The jig can accommodate inventory from 1/2 inch to 1-1/4 inches thick.

For the reason that Wolfcraft dowel jig gives wide-ranging performance, the included person information is useful. It’s competitively priced and features a starter pack of 60 fluted dowel pins.

Best Dowel Jig Option: AUTOTOOLHOME Woodworking Dowel Jig 1/4


At first look, this handheld dowel jig from AUTOTOOLHOME seems to be very similar to different cheap variations of this device; nevertheless, it features a vertical fence to clamp to the workpiece to offer larger precision.

The plastic physique might not have the long-term sturdiness of its aluminum rivals, however the three drill bushes are metal. They create 1/4-inch, 5/16-inch, and three/8-inch dowel holes on lumber from 1/2 inch to 1-1/2 inches thick. Three appropriate-size brad-point drill bits are included.

When used as a handheld jig, the workpiece should be safe, and the person should be affected person.

Best Dowel Jig Option: Dowelmax Kit Precision Engineered Joining System


Few dowel jigs are made with the precision of the Dowelmax jig. Every part is CNC machined to inside 1/1,000 inch. Along with the standard edge, nook, and T joints, the Dowelmax jig can also produce customized offsets and miter joints.

The device is designed for quick, repetitive manufacturing, so the 5 hardened metal bushes are all 3/8 inch in diameter. Bushes for 1/4-inch, 1/2-inch, and 5/8-inch holes can be found for an additional value. Apply it to 3/4-by-3/4-inch as much as 4-by-4 inch materials.

The Dowelmax jig will not be designed for DIY customers, and a slight studying curve is required to make use of it efficiently. Nonetheless, it might be well worth the funding for demanding professionals as a result of it’s more likely to final a lifetime.

Best Dowel Jig Option: Milescraft 1309 DowelJigKit - Complete Doweling Kit


Milescraft’s dowel jig equipment is made to work with its handheld Joint Mate jig. The robust, heavy-duty plastic physique, which has hardened metal inserts for 1/4-inch, 5/16-inch, and three/8-inch drilling, can create frequent dowel joints in materials from 1/2 inch to 1-1/2 inches thick.

The equipment gives all of the required equipment, together with three matching brad-point drill bits with depth-stop collars, plus dowels in all three sizes. Moreover, it comprises metal facilities to shortly switch gap positions from one piece of lumber to a different and a tube of wooden glue. A sturdy case retains all of the elements organized.

Best Dowel Jig Option: Jessem Model 08350 Dowelling Jig Master Kit


The Jessem dowel jig is one other device aimed on the skilled, not as a result of the jig is especially complicated—inexperienced woodworkers can deal with it—however due to the range and accuracy of dowel joints the jig can create.

Becoming a member of finish grain is all the time tough, and most dowel jigs aren’t effectively fitted to the duty. Nonetheless, with the flexibility to position dowels a mere 1/8 inch aside, the Jessem jig tackles the job comparatively simply with a degree of precision that few different jigs can match.

Somewhat than altering particular person bushes, the Jessem jig gives quick-change bush carriers in 1/4-inch, 3/8-inch, and 1/2-inch sizes. Utilizing the spacer bar, the person can set them wherever from 1/4 inch to 3-1/2 inches from the board edge. Moreover, a number of configuration choices permit the person so as to add dowels in virtually any place.

Best Dowel Jig Option: AUTOTOOLHOME Self Centering Doweling Jig Step Drill


Dowel jigs are sometimes used on edge-jointing boards when making tabletops, benches, chair seats, and extra. A self-centering dowel jig gives speedy alignment with out a number of measurement or setup. The person merely closes the jaws on the lumber, and the bushes are within the right place.

The AUTOTOOLHOME self-centering jig gives 5 hardened metal bush sizes: 1/4 inch, 5/16 inch, 3/8 inch, 7/16 inch, and 1/2 inch. It might probably accommodate lumber from 7/16 inch to 2-1/2 inches thick. Customers can also make use of the jig for spherical inventory inside these measurement ranges.

Best Dowel Jig Option: AUTOTOOLHOME Self Centering Doweling Jig Kit


This AUTOTOOLHOME dowel jig makes use of a parallelogram design to make sure that, whatever the width of the fabric being clamped, the drill bushes are all the time within the middle.

The principle physique is aluminum with hardened metal bushes within the frequent 1/4-inch, 3/8-inch, and 5/16-inch sizes. AUTOTOOLHOME gives a information rail and pin system for correct gap spacing alongside an edge, but it surely’s calibrated in millimeters.

Its two small holes between bushings permit the person to insert a pencil to precisely mark the centerline of any piece of lumber inside its measurement vary. Nonetheless, it has limits: It all the time finds the middle and doesn’t supply a straightforward solution to drill off-center if required.

Best Dowel Jig Option: Taytools Drill Guide Dowel Kit Jig with 6 Bushings


At first look, the Taytools dowel jig’s clear plastic physique is unimpressive, however seems to be will be deceiving. This easy machine can create all kinds of joints, together with a dowel gap in cylindrical lumber of any diameter.

The jig consists of six hardened metal bushes: 3/16 inch, 1/4 inch, 5/16 inch, 3/8 inch, 7/16 inch, and 1/2 inch. The finding pins permit customers to place the jig on the middle of boards as much as 3 inches in width. Drilling an correct collection of holes requires rigorously marking them out.

Best Dowel Jig Option: Big Horn 19695 1/4


The compact, light-weight Huge Horn dowel jig takes a primary strategy to becoming a member of board edges and finish grain. It gives a fast solution to make not solely tabletops and different objects but in addition easy butt-jointed frames for furnishings.

The highest face is evident acrylic, and the drill bushes are hardened metal, though 1/4 inch is the one measurement the producer gives. Nonetheless, centering the dowels within the thickness of the board to affix two edges isn’t all the time obligatory. In the event that they’re the identical distance from the face, the joint nonetheless works. The identical precept applies to nook joints.

FAQs About Dowel Jigs

This information gives an outline of most of the components to think about when selecting the perfect dowel jig on your workshop duties. Nonetheless, you should still have some questions on utilizing dowels. The solutions to among the most steadily requested queries observe.

Q. How do I select a dowel measurement?

When creating edge and nook joints, ideally, the dowel must be one-third the thickness of the board you’re becoming a member of. Whereas as much as half the thickness of the board is permissible, don’t go any additional. For giant overlapping joints, measurement isn’t vital.

Q. How far aside ought to dowels be positioned?

It will depend on the job. On end-grain materials, dowels will be as shut as sensible to offer most help. On 1- to 2-foot boards, place a dowel roughly 1 inch from every finish and 4 to six inches aside in between. On lengthy boards, place dowels as much as 10 inches aside.

Q. Do dowels want glue?

Sure. Dowel joints are meant to be everlasting, so apply a small quantity of glue. In case you suppose it would be best to disassemble your challenge in some unspecified time in the future, think about using a pocket gap jig, which makes use of detachable screws relatively than dowels.

Q. How a lot weight can a dowel maintain?

Whereas many variables influence the quantity, some specialists within the area word {that a} 1-inch dowel can maintain 3,000 to 4,000 kilos.

Q. Why are dowels usually utilized in making an edge joint?

Dowels make it straightforward to align surfaces and stop them from slipping whereas the glue dries, which might dramatically cut back the necessity for corrective work later.

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