After spending the day cutting lumber to exact sizes and lining up
precise doweling markers, my cabinet is ruined because of a lousy jig.
I did not "cheap out" on this one. It's the expensive version of the
Task Self-Centering Jig and it works terribly. It may be fine for
laminating edge-glued panels (probably not), but it is awful for making
loose tenon joinery using dowels. The jig has two adjacent 1/4" holes,
spaced evenly, so that you can put two holes on each rail and post
What they do not tell you, and what I found out after ruining my
project, is that the self-centering design allows the central block to
have a certain degree of play in it (there is only one bearing, the
middle screw). This means that the holes may still be spaced at a
precise distance, but no longer square to the edge of either post or
rail. The resulting difference is obvious once the joint is completed,
as any error is amplified visually by the appearance of a twisted
I am considering calling LV and asking them to take this abomination
back, but it's been a month now as I was not able to get to this
project until today. Hopefully they will. I see no point at all in
having a jig that doesn't do what it is supposed to do. Perhaps it
works better when only drilling one hole at a time, but then why
include the spaced doubles?
Does anyone use the DowelMax system? How is that? It's pretty pricey
compared to this thing, but all the time I will have to spend planing
the hell out of these carcases will be worth something too.
Before you consider telling me that I am just "doing it wrong" please
note that I have attempted drilling with 2 different drills, different
speeds, and created side blocks to allow the jig to have full support.
I suppose I could rig up some precision shims to stop the "play" in the
middle section, but then clamping it on would be difficult at best,
considering that even planed wood has variations in thickness. Tapping
in wedges would cause more problems than it would solve as well. I'm
at the end of my rope. But if I am really "doing it wrong" please let