Step 4: Drill the holes

You might have guessed it. You need to drill some holes now. The first hole to drill is the one the goes from edge to edge. The 3/8" dowel will go into this hole. I would recommend drilling a test hole to see how well the dowel fits. Sometimes the tolerance on store bought dowels isn't as accurate as you may need, so you may need to sand the dowel or choose a different bit.

I used the drill press for this. Drill on the line, about right in the middle of the edge, all the way through. If you're off the line, it's not a big deal. Just be sure that if you're posting instructions online on how to make this device, remember to make fun of the fact that you goofed a bit so people don't realize you have no idea what you're doing.

Once that hole has been drilled, change bits to the one you will need for the larger dowel (in my case 3/4" Forstner bit) and drill through the face of the stock. You don't want to drill right on the witness line, because it's against the bylaws of your homeowner's association. Instead, drill about 1/4" away from the line. Drill straight through. It is important that this hole is perpendicular to the face. If it's not, the gauge will operate a little funny, which may be a quirk you're willing to deal with, but really this shouldn't take long to do over.
I had an idea that would make this tool even more useful. If you drove in multiple nails into the end, you could make it to where there were two cutters that cut to the width of your chisels. This could be done for multiple combinations on the same gauge even.
The adjective for "spur" is spurrilous, not spurry. It's a common error. Your welcome.
"You're" welcome and not "Your" welcome. It's a common error. You're welcome :-)
Not to be picky, because I understand from your ible how this works...but isn't the dowel in compression, not tension? Great idea, I'm going to make one of these as soon as I find time. Thanks!
This is genius! I followed the directions and now I have a custom marking gauge all my own. The darn thing works! Thanks for this instructable.
Simple and lovely. Got out my scrap wood, created the dowels and then the gauge in a quick 30 minutes. I do small work so my gauge is just 3 inches. I simply followed your instructions including the refueling step and voila. Nice! Thanks.
Hi, <br>Does it make sense to leave the 1st dowell in place while drilling the second hole? <br>I'm planning to make one, but only have enough dowell for one go, so don't want to muck it up! <br>Cheers <br>Jim
Much cheaper, and makes you feel more manly to have made a tool you use.. &nbsp;I drilled the tensional dowel hole first, put the dowel in, and then drilled the hole for the stem. &nbsp;This saved me from needing to to do the first part of Step 5. &nbsp;Great Instructable.
&nbsp;Yes I do, and yes, I do.<br /> Hey I wish I had seen this one last night. I was thinking of making one, but I just used my hand an a pen instead. Favorited.
I can't find a popular dowel. Can I use something people don't like, like a knotty pine dowel?
Great tutorial. I especially like the refueling step. So many people leave that one out!
Excellent, clear instructions, and most entertaining to boot! Favorite'd without hesitation.

About This Instructable


111 favorites


Bio: I am a human and not some sort of robot at all. Yep, I do human things like eat food and bleed and blink for ... More »
More by RonsBrain: Make a marking gauge out of scrap wood Sliding Dovetail Bookends
Add instructable to: