dowel grooves

Years ago you could buy a simple jig, a tool, basically a piece of plate steel that had been drilled and machined for grooving dowels of the most common sizes. I have been looking on the web for weeks now and I can't seem to find one anywhere, maybe I am using the wrong term to look for it, I don't know exactly what it is called. SO I am asking for your help. Does anyone out there know if they still make this tool and if so where the heck can you buy one? Thanks for your help.
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I *think* they are draw plates. Used for pulling dowels through to size them. Another type was used for the grooves. A short dowel piece was placed over the appropriate hole and each hole had small protrusions around it such that when you smacked the dowel through the grooves were gouged out. Of course one can also make these grooves by gripping a dowel with the inside jaws of a pair of pliers.
Jon wrote:

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It's called a dowel plate. Used to be quite a common tool - I hadn't seen one for sale for years, until I DAGS - Lie-Nielsen make them now.
http://www.craftsmanstudio.com/html/fine_tools/lie-nielsen/lie-nielsen_4_16.html
At $45, it ain't cheap; however, there's nothing to stop you making your own. The quick way is to buy a drill gauge - a piece of plate steel usually about 3" x 6"x 1/4 " thick, accurately drilled with graduated marked holes in it - normally, machinists use it to check the gauge of an unknown drill. To use it as a dowel plate, you simply roughly size your stock - squaring then chamfering, or even whittling. to produce an octagon, then use a mallet to drive it through the plate, so you'll end up with accurately-sized dowels. It works quite well for dowels up to about 3" long.
You can make one from scratch by using 1/4" M/S (or, even better if you're making a lot of dowels, gauge plate - a higher carbon steel) and drilling the holes in that you need.
You can improve things by attaching this plate to the top of a hardwood block, the same size as the plate, and about 1-1 1/2" thick, and drilling the holes right through the wooden block, using the hole in the plate as a guide. You then take ordinary woodscrews and screw them laterally (sideways) into the block, so that the point of the screw just enters the vertical hole through the plate/block assembly. Then when you drive your dowel through the hole, the screw point gouges out a channel along the side of the dowel, allowing a glue/pressure relief when you drive the dowel into the job.
Adapt, improvise, overcome! (Name that quote, anyone?)
Cheers,
Frank

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Frank McVey wrote:
<snipped with hedge trimmers>

Gunny Highway-Heart Break Ridge. Where Cluster F***s were invented<G>!
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Here's one. http://www.pecktool.com/Miscellaneous.htm#Dowel%20Sizer%20&%20Fluter
They're proud of it...

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