Dowelled Corner Joint

Dowelled joints were originally invented for the mass-production furniture industry. Because making some joints in the traditional way is labour intensive and does not lend itself well to mass-production techniques, dowels are more cost effective.

By far the easiest way to make a dowelled joint is with a jig which, with care, will make an accurate, well-fitting joint. Effectively, it is a butt joint reinforced with hardwood pegs. The dowels can be made by cutting them from a length of straight-grained hardwood dowelling, or they can be purchased ready made. Make sure they are of an adequate length and sharpen the end with a pencil sharpener to make the joint easier to fit together.

1 Dowels can be obtained ready-made, or formed from lengths of hardwood that are sold for the purpose.

3 Insert the dowels in the holes and put the joint together. If it is satisfactory, take the joint apart, apply glue, fit it together and clamp until stuck. Clean up the outside of the joint with a plane.

2 Using a dowelling jig ensures that the dowel holes are made easily and accurately. Mark the outside faces and top edges on the two corners to be joined. When drilling the holes, make sure that the bearing plates on the jig are up against these surfaces. This will ensure that the holes are lined up.

FIG 4.5

Making a dowelled corner joint.

2 Clean out the waste wood with a bevel-edged chisel. If it is a long housing, you will have to work from both sides of the board. Check the depth frequently with a steel rule.

How Make Housing Joint

FIG 4.6

Making a through housing joint.

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