On Tue, 11 Nov 2003 18:54:52 -0500, Silvan
I hate cutting dowels, especially with a plug cutter. Lots of hassle,
and you only make a tiny piece. Handy for cross-grain screw covers,
not so much for dowels.
I rip square stock on the badsaw, then plane it octagonal. I chop it
down to 6" lengths, then force it through a dowel plate.
The dowel plate is home made, from a snip of old power hacksaw blade.
Anneal it, drill pairs or triples of holes in a range of sizes. Use a
tapered reamer to put some "draw" on the backs of the holes. Use a
needle file to convert one or two of each size to a star shaped hole.
Heat, re-harden and temper only slightly (pale straw). Hammer the
dowel through from the narrow side, using the star-hole first, then
the round hole to finish.
I made this today:
It's parana pine, about 16" long, and intended as a replica of a late
medieval Baltic coast trader's chest (Sarah is a silversmith who does
Ye Olde Ren & Stimpy Fayres). The open tenons on the sides and the
coopered top are pegged down with little 1/8" bamboo pegs. I agonised
for a few milliseconds over using bamboo, but it comes in a packet of
nice ready-rounded dowels, sold as barbecue skewers. For thicker pegs,
I keep my chopsticks from the local noodle shop.
Next step is to wrap it in oilcloth, which I'm making myself to a 17th
century Pennsylvania recipe - linseed boiled with lead oxide and
manganese dioxide driers.
Die Gotterspammerung - Junkmail of the Gods