Author Topic: Woodpeckers updated shelf pin jig -- anyone have a review?  (Read 2227 times)

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Offline nicholam77

  • Posts: 88
Woodpeckers updated shelf pin jig -- anyone have a review?
« on: September 09, 2021, 12:50 PM »
I'm interested in the new Woodpecker's shelf pin jig, but can't find a real review anywhere. Just the official videos on the features. Anyone have this and can comment on accuracy or ease of use? Especially when "extending" a long row of holes and repositioning the jig?

I would be using with a router and guide bushing. I'm not deep into the Festool system and wondering if the LR32 is really worth hacking with an off-brand router, or if something like this would be as accurate and useful.

FWIW I don't think I need to build actual System32 cabinets, but would like to consistently locate hinge plates and shelf pins with good accuracy, with a router.

Thanks for any insight,
-Nick
CT15 | ETS 125 REQ

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Offline Packard

  • Posts: 686
Re: Woodpeckers updated shelf pin jig -- anyone have a review?
« Reply #1 on: September 09, 2021, 01:12 PM »
It is a less versatile version of CMT's template.  A design theft, really.  I bought mine from Amazon.de (Germany) as it is not imported to the USA.

IGM has better illustrations and information on this.  They  re-brand many of CMT's products as their own.

https://www.igmtools.com/igm-fkp900-boring-template-set-900-mm-euro-32-mm--free-100pcs-dowels/

As a rule I use it prior to assembling the carcase as it is generally too long to use after assembly.  I have a Kreg unit if I have to drill after assembly.

It pairs with the dowel jig (a very efficient jig for sheet goods only).

I paid 143 Euros + about $20.00 freight from Germany to the USA.  You also need the special drilling chuck or a 14mm bushing on your plunge router.  The router makes cleaner holes; the drill is more convenient. 

It is part of the dowel drilling fixture so I am estimating the freight costs.

IGM is the European "Rockler", a major distributor of woodworking equipment.  They have a much higher freight cost than Amazon, but they include some accessories, so the cost is about the same. 

They were unable to process either my Amex or my Visa or my Mastercard in the USA.  So I went with Amazon.  Amazon.de will use your regular Amazon account.  It will also translate the site to English for you.

« Last Edit: September 09, 2021, 01:15 PM by Packard »

Offline nicholam77

  • Posts: 88
Re: Woodpeckers updated shelf pin jig -- anyone have a review?
« Reply #2 on: September 13, 2021, 10:19 AM »
@Packard thanks for the reply. I am aware of the CMT template but did not know of the IGM brand. They don't seem to be available at the moment (either one).

The doweling jig is interesting but I don't have a huge need as I have other methods for carcass construction.

Still curious if anyone can speak to the accuracy of the WP jig when extending a row of holes, but I will keep the CMT jig in mind. Thanks!
CT15 | ETS 125 REQ

Offline Packard

  • Posts: 686
Re: Woodpeckers updated shelf pin jig -- anyone have a review?
« Reply #3 on: September 13, 2021, 10:49 AM »
I have the Kreg jig which allows you to either gang jigs together or to reposition for longer runs.  The principle is the same.  You use a pin to register the jig to the new position.  You probably lose about 0.005" in accuracy due to the fit of the pin to the drilled hole.  There has to be some clearance or it will be an "interference fit" and you would have a hard time retrieving the pin.

The Kreg jig uses a drill bit and I have been disappointed with the tear-out at the holes.  The router will make cleaner holes.  It also is likely to make the holes more nearly at 90 degrees to the surface.

I don't think the accuracy is a real-life concern.  If a shelf is 0.005" higher in the front than the rear, I would probably be impossible to notice without highly accurate measuring tools.  Plus the wall is not likely to be plumb to that tight a tolerance either.   

I never worried about it.  The bigger issue is "pilot error", that is where I put the jig in the wrong position to start with.

It is rare that I need all the holes drilled.  I usually do groups of 5 holes which leaves plenty of room for adjustment.  I tape off the holes I don't want drilled.  With the Kreg jig, I  use spacer blocks to reposition the jig.   

Offline Josh2

  • Posts: 104
Re: Woodpeckers updated shelf pin jig -- anyone have a review?
« Reply #4 on: September 13, 2021, 11:07 AM »
I have the new WP jig and used it several times now (only for 32mm system).

https://www.woodpeck.com/shelf-pin-drawer-slide-template.html

I like that it is higher quality than many of the cheep jigs and that it allows you to use it both with a drill and with a router. The router with the right bit leaves very clean holes. It has worked will for me but I am not entirely satisfied. Here are my concerns:

1. Sawdust tends to stay in the 3/8 holes even when dust extraction is attached to the OF 1400 router. It mainly stays under the guide bushing sides. Maybe it doesn't interfere but I am always worried and take the time to detach the hose from the router and go over the each hole I used in the jig to get everything out. That adds an additional step, which I find pretty annoying. The problem is worse with a drill.

2. I am not entirely satisfied with the accuracy. It might well be user error but it might also be the case that the referencing with the pins and this other thing produces slight errors. This has not been a problem for shelfs or drawer slides. But I do notice it when I do the following: a) Drill first set of holes referencing the front with 37mm offset, b) use jig in perpendicular position referencing from the front to drill two holes in the back. Referencing from the front for holes further on the inside is necessary for drawer slides and I sometimes like to do it in other cases as well. b) Now I should be able to place the jig in the middle of the panel and secure it with pins through the two holes I just drilled to drill a complete set of holes further inside. However, that doesn't work for me because the holes are off by a very small amount. Not sure whether this is clear based on my description. I think the amount of error does not matter for shelfs and drawers slides but it makes the production process more complicated.

EDIT: to be clear, this might be user error. It might also be the case that this type of accuracy just cannot really be achieved with this type of jig.

Today I would probably consider these two jigs as alternatives:

1) https://www.sautershop.com/system-32-router-template-incl.-dowel-drill-set-mfs3202-2.0?c=15670

The advantage here is that you do not have to lift the router and find the next hole to drill each hole, which makes it much faster in actual use. It might also help with the dust problem. It includes a good router bit, which makes the price comparable to WP. However, the jig is VERY big.

2) https://www.hafele.co.uk/en/product/drilling-jig-variantool-n-haefele-ixconnect/0000003e000368e6000a0023/

Only for drills so I would like to see how clean the holes are. But I like the quality of Hafele products and would like to try it. The edge reference thing is attached to the jig and slides up and down, which seems great. Pretty sure it's much faster. Might be hard to get in the U.S. though.

I might still end up with the WP jig. I haven't invested the time to figure out whether either of these two jigs is a better choice but I would certainly take a close look because I am not entirely satisfied with the WP jig.






« Last Edit: September 13, 2021, 11:13 AM by Josh2 »

Offline Packard

  • Posts: 686
Re: Woodpeckers updated shelf pin jig -- anyone have a review?
« Reply #5 on: September 13, 2021, 11:52 AM »
The Hafele jig looks nice, but the layout will not permit the use of a plunge router.  It also has the same limitation that the CMT jig has:  It is too long to use after assembly.  You need to drill prior to assembly.  It is not a problem, but it changed the way I worked. 

The CMT jig is flat and allows the use of a router.  The locating stampings on the Hafele jig would not allow the plunge router.   But the drill chuck looks well-made.  I would not hesitate to buy one, but it appears not to be imported to the USA either.

Offline nicholam77

  • Posts: 88
Re: Woodpeckers updated shelf pin jig -- anyone have a review?
« Reply #6 on: September 14, 2021, 12:39 PM »
I have the new WP jig and used it several times now (only for 32mm system).

https://www.woodpeck.com/shelf-pin-drawer-slide-template.html

I like that it is higher quality than many of the cheep jigs and that it allows you to use it both with a drill and with a router. The router with the right bit leaves very clean holes. It has worked will for me but I am not entirely satisfied. Here are my concerns:

1. Sawdust tends to stay in the 3/8 holes even when dust extraction is attached to the OF 1400 router. It mainly stays under the guide bushing sides. Maybe it doesn't interfere but I am always worried and take the time to detach the hose from the router and go over the each hole I used in the jig to get everything out. That adds an additional step, which I find pretty annoying. The problem is worse with a drill.

2. I am not entirely satisfied with the accuracy. It might well be user error but it might also be the case that the referencing with the pins and this other thing produces slight errors. This has not been a problem for shelfs or drawer slides. But I do notice it when I do the following: a) Drill first set of holes referencing the front with 37mm offset, b) use jig in perpendicular position referencing from the front to drill two holes in the back. Referencing from the front for holes further on the inside is necessary for drawer slides and I sometimes like to do it in other cases as well. b) Now I should be able to place the jig in the middle of the panel and secure it with pins through the two holes I just drilled to drill a complete set of holes further inside. However, that doesn't work for me because the holes are off by a very small amount. Not sure whether this is clear based on my description. I think the amount of error does not matter for shelfs and drawers slides but it makes the production process more complicated.

EDIT: to be clear, this might be user error. It might also be the case that this type of accuracy just cannot really be achieved with this type of jig.

Today I would probably consider these two jigs as alternatives:

1) https://www.sautershop.com/system-32-router-template-incl.-dowel-drill-set-mfs3202-2.0?c=15670

The advantage here is that you do not have to lift the router and find the next hole to drill each hole, which makes it much faster in actual use. It might also help with the dust problem. It includes a good router bit, which makes the price comparable to WP. However, the jig is VERY big.

2) https://www.hafele.co.uk/en/product/drilling-jig-variantool-n-haefele-ixconnect/0000003e000368e6000a0023/

Only for drills so I would like to see how clean the holes are. But I like the quality of Hafele products and would like to try it. The edge reference thing is attached to the jig and slides up and down, which seems great. Pretty sure it's much faster. Might be hard to get in the U.S. though.

I might still end up with the WP jig. I haven't invested the time to figure out whether either of these two jigs is a better choice but I would certainly take a close look because I am not entirely satisfied with the WP jig.

Thanks, this is helpful!

Interesting about the dust collection. I would 100% be using a router w/dust collection. I don't have a Festool router but a DeWalt 618 plunge base and dust collection is pretty good. What style of bit are you using? I'm using a 5mm brad point router bit (similar to the one that comes with the LR32) and it leaves really clean holes and I haven't had an issue with dust collection, but I've only used a different style homemade jig. If you're using a downcut spiral bit maybe try an upcut or brad point? Or maybe it's just the jig that traps it?

Regarding the accuracy, if I'm reading it correctly, I don't think I'd be using it like you're doing. Probably just referencing the front and back of the panel for shelf pins, with the occasional drawer slide hole mid-panel. FWIW I don't think the Woodpecker jig is meant to do a "row" of holes in the middle of the panel, just 37mm offset from an edge.

Can you comment on "extending the line" to make a long row of holes? Basically I'm wondering if I have a really tall cabinet, and start the row by referencing the bottom of the panel, front and back, for example -- do the front and back rows of holes line up nicely in the end? If the jig has to be moved to do a long row?

I don't need absolute perfection, but even 0.5mm difference can cause shelves to rock. I'm just a hobbyist but recently built a large pantry unit that did need long rows of holes for adjustable shelving, and before I spend minimum $120 on a jig I want to make sure it can handle long rows with good accuracy.



In the above example the WP jig would have to be repositioned many times.

I'm also considering the Sautershop jig, it looks great, and I'm more sure of that one because Peter Millard has a YouTube video on it. I couldn't find a "real world user" review on the Woodpecker one, which obviously is a good deal cheaper. Shipping the Sautershop jig to the US adds a fair amount to the cost, about $212 USD last time I checked.

So... kind of weighing those two, or if I should spring another $100 on top of that and get a 55" holey rail, LR32 sled, and LR32 end stops and adapt my router to it. About $330. Decisions, decisions...

 [big grin]
CT15 | ETS 125 REQ

Offline Packard

  • Posts: 686
Re: Woodpeckers updated shelf pin jig -- anyone have a review?
« Reply #7 on: September 14, 2021, 12:56 PM »
All these jigs reposition the same way.  They use a hole that is drilled to index the jig for the next run of holes. 

The big difference, as I see it, is that some (like the Kreg) use small, cheap bushings inserted into all the drilling holes. 

The CMT and the Hafale use unbushed holes but also a special center-finding drill accessory. 

This is the Hafale unit:



And this shows the CMT version:



The CMT version allows you to use a 14mm bushing on your plunge router or the drill option.  I find the drill option easier.  I recommend a corded drill with a high rpm for cleaner holes.  And since you are drilling a lot of them, faster holes too. DeWalt makes a 3/8" corded drill with 4,000 rpms.  That will drill probably 4 times faster than a battery drill.

I have only used the CMT version.  But the Hafale version looks nicer.  The hole accuracy is based on the drill bit being used.  So that should not be a deciding factor.

The holes for the CMT jig are 14mm.  I don't know the size of the holes on the Hafale jig.

The jig has made me change my operations.  I now drill before assembly.  So it is easy to use a T-square to mark the location of the start of the holes on both sides of the shelf unit. Line the end panels side by side and draw a line using the T-square.
« Last Edit: September 14, 2021, 01:03 PM by Packard »

Offline Packard

  • Posts: 686
Re: Woodpeckers updated shelf pin jig -- anyone have a review?
« Reply #8 on: September 15, 2021, 04:23 PM »
The Milescraft jig has the advantage of being injection molded.  Once the high cost of the mold is paid for the piece price becomes rather modest. 

But the big advantage is that the dimensional repeatability is always 100%.  There is no drifting of tolerances, wear of the cutting tools, etc. 

I have the Kreg jig, but that uses cheap little steel bushings in all the holes. The MilesCraft uses a self-centering bit that will make perpendicular drilling easier and more consistent. 

I have several MilesCraft devices and they have all been perfectly satisfactory despite the low pricing.  I had our QC manager check the accuracy of their angle gauge and it was spot on.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B014A1Z8J2?ref=em_1p_0_im&ref_=pe_2313360_604105860






Offline Peter Kelly

  • Posts: 42
Re: Woodpeckers updated shelf pin jig -- anyone have a review?
« Reply #9 on: September 21, 2021, 03:18 PM »
I've struggled with the original Woodpeckers jig for some time and recently upgraded to one of these:



https://www.sautershop.com/system-32-router-template-phenolic-resin-sa-mfs3202-2.0

Well worth the money IMO, just need to get a set of metric bushings from Milescraft if you're in the US.

Offline nicholam77

  • Posts: 88
Re: Woodpeckers updated shelf pin jig -- anyone have a review?
« Reply #10 on: September 23, 2021, 04:20 PM »
The Milescraft jig has the advantage of being injection molded.  Once the high cost of the mold is paid for the piece price becomes rather modest. 

But the big advantage is that the dimensional repeatability is always 100%.  There is no drifting of tolerances, wear of the cutting tools, etc. 

I have the Kreg jig, but that uses cheap little steel bushings in all the holes. The MilesCraft uses a self-centering bit that will make perpendicular drilling easier and more consistent. 

I have several MilesCraft devices and they have all been perfectly satisfactory despite the low pricing.  I had our QC manager check the accuracy of their angle gauge and it was spot on.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B014A1Z8J2?ref=em_1p_0_im&ref_=pe_2313360_604105860




Hmmm, I hadn't seen that Milescraft one before. Thanks for sharing.

I'm 100% after a jig that accepts router drilling, though. I have the low-end Rockler shelf pin jig, which has a self-centering bit, and it wasn't satisfactory to me. Holes end up too loose, makes a mess, not accurate to reposition.

I've struggled with the original Woodpeckers jig for some time and recently upgraded to one of these:



https://www.sautershop.com/system-32-router-template-phenolic-resin-sa-mfs3202-2.0

Well worth the money IMO, just need to get a set of metric bushings from Milescraft if you're in the US.

This one is on my list!

If I get the Woodpecker jig it would be the new one, not the old one, but can you elaborate on why you struggled with the old one? The Sautershop jig isn't significantly different in concept in that it also is a piece of phenolic that uses locating pins and must clamp to the workpiece. The finger-style router indexes vs. holes is very nice, but I'm wondering if it's worth twice the cost of the new Woodpecker jig (after shipping to U.S.!)

CT15 | ETS 125 REQ

Offline Peter Kelly

  • Posts: 42
Re: Woodpeckers updated shelf pin jig -- anyone have a review?
« Reply #11 on: September 23, 2021, 07:33 PM »
  • The Sautershop jig is easily long enough (40") to do the sides of either a base kitchen cabinet or most upper case sizes without having to reposition along the length of the panel.
  • It has stop positions that allow you to drill at different depths across the width of a cabinet side which is useful for shallow shelves and drawer slides on base cases.
  • 100% metric so no risk of accidentally drilling on 1 inch centres.
  • The row of fingers to run the router bushing around is much easier than trying to locate individual guide holes as on the Woodpeckers jig.

Offline nicholam77

  • Posts: 88
Re: Woodpeckers updated shelf pin jig -- anyone have a review?
« Reply #12 on: September 24, 2021, 11:10 AM »
Thanks, agree with all those points and that is helpful.
CT15 | ETS 125 REQ

Offline Packard

  • Posts: 686
Re: Woodpeckers updated shelf pin jig -- anyone have a review?
« Reply #13 on: September 24, 2021, 12:41 PM »
My CMT jig, which is similar to Woodpeckers, is made from 1/2 inch thick phenolic.

A 36" x 48" sheet of that stuff is about $290.00 and will yield 6 jigs 8" x 36" or 4 jigs 48" long.

Some members have access to CNC milling machines.  This is an easy build for that.  You know the center to center distance.  You have only to decide what size bushing you want to use on the router. 

Make exactly what you want.  Make the first sample from MDF to test the design.  The MDF will wear much faster than the phenolic, but will last long enough to test the design. 

I'm sure someone could market 6 jigs just announcing it within these forums. 

Or buy a single sheet of 8" x 40" x 0.500" for $111.00 and make one example.  (I would still make a sample from MDF to test the design.

https://www.interstateplastics.com/Phenolic-Natural-Le-Sheet-PHENM%7E%7ESH.php?sku=PHENM++SH&vid=20210924163953-8p&dim2=8&dim3=40&thickness=0.500&qty=1&recalculate.x=37&recalculate.y=23

Offline Peter Kelly

  • Posts: 42
Re: Woodpeckers updated shelf pin jig -- anyone have a review?
« Reply #14 on: September 24, 2021, 05:30 PM »
Both the Woodpeckers and Sautershop jigs are made from 3/8" phenolic-like material and I don't imagine you'd need anything more substantial.

I've actually had a number of pattern templates laser cut by Ponoko out of plain old 1/4" MDF, they last a surprisingly long time.   

Offline Packard

  • Posts: 686
Re: Woodpeckers updated shelf pin jig -- anyone have a review?
« Reply #15 on: September 24, 2021, 05:34 PM »
When I get home I will take a vernier to my CMT jig. The price of phenolic sheets is heavily impacted by the thickness. So 3/8” stock will be substantially cheaper.

Offline Peter Kelly

  • Posts: 42
Re: Woodpeckers updated shelf pin jig -- anyone have a review?
« Reply #16 on: September 24, 2021, 07:02 PM »
My guess is that the CMT, Woodpeckers & Sauter jigs are actually made out of 10mm Trespa. Straight Garolite phenolic panels wouldn't come with the decorative top and bottom melamine surfaces.

https://www.trespa.com/en-us/products/exterior-panels#/detail/Pure%20White

Offline Packard

  • Posts: 686
Re: Woodpeckers updated shelf pin jig -- anyone have a review?
« Reply #17 on: September 24, 2021, 08:45 PM »
My CMT pin drill and dowel fixture measures 0.473”, or nominally 12mm.

The top surface is, of course, orange.

The holes accommodate a 14mm drill guide or router bushing.

It is designed to drill shelf holes, or with an 8mm bit, to drill dowel holes or pilot holes for Confirmat screws with a 5mm bit.