In Tricks of the Trade

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Bullet-Catch Bench Dogs

When I built my workbench, I drilled round bench-dog holes in the top so I didn’t have to cut square mortises. Being a thrifty sort, I didn’t want to shell out for store-bought dogs, so I made my own.

At first, I thought all I’d need was a couple 3/4″ dowels with flat faces cut into them at a slight angle. They worked, but I couldn’t leave the dogs in the holes when they weren’t in use—they fell right through!

I had some leftover bullet catches from another job, so I installed a pair in each dog. They’re spring-loaded, providing just enough pressure to keep the dogs in place.

The catches have a lip, so I supported the dogs in a V-block and drilled shallow counterbores to sink the lips below the surface. –Serge Duclos

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