Cross dowel/connector bolt hardware forms sturdy joinery for knockdown furniture, and the connections are easy to assemble or disassemble. The challenge to incorporating this hardware into projects, however, is drilling accurate holes for the bolts and metal cross dowels. Woodpeckers® new Cross Dowel Drill Jig should help to simplify the process. The jig consists of a solid aluminum body with stainless-steel guide bushings. Two bushings on the larger face of the jig are sized to 7/16-in.-diameter for boring housings for the cross dowels. They are offset at either 3/4 in. or 1 in. to enable the system to connect various thicknesses of workpieces. A second pair of 1/4-in.-diameter bushings on the narrower jig face are used to drill holes for the connector bolts.
Directions for creating joinery with this jig are straightforward: clamp the jig independently to each workpiece and drill the correct holes for the bolt or dowel, then install the connective hardware to draw the joint closed. Woodpeckers designed the jig for use with either #10 or 1/4-in. bolts and matching cross dowels. The company does not package drill bits, bolts or cross dowels with the jig, but it does offer a range of 10-pack hardware sizes as well as brad-point bits separately. The new Cross Dowel Drill Jig is selling for the introductory sale price of $29.99 (the street price will eventually increase to $32.99), and Woodpeckers reports that orders for the new jig will ship after March 31.