Short vs long bench dogs?

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Forum topic by jimmy J posted 12-09-2014 02:44 PM 1229 views 0 times favorited 9 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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jimmy J

229 posts in 2860 days

12-09-2014 02:44 PM

I’m finally getting around to adding (round) dogs to my bench. I play to buy the aluminum dogs available from several mfg’s. I see that they sell short ones (2 3/8”) and long ones (4 3/8”). is there much of a difference in these? My bench is around 4.5” thick.

Also plan to buy a set or two of the short plastic dogs with the flat side.

When do people use the standard dogs vs using these short flat ones?

9 replies so far

View BinghamtonEd's profile


2298 posts in 2851 days

#1 posted 12-09-2014 03:16 PM

You could make a couple different size from scrap and see what size you like. Or just make all your own. Short flat ones may come in handier when trying to plane thinner stock. On the other hand, a larger bench dog allows for greater purchase on larger stock.

-- - The mightiest oak in the forest is just a little nut that held its ground.

View Tedstor's profile


1678 posts in 3114 days

#2 posted 12-09-2014 05:03 PM

If your bench is 4 1/2 thick, I’d think you’d definitely want the longer dogs. I’d think the shorter dogs would constantly get suspended between the upper/lower surfaces of the benchtop and be harder to work with.
I use the shorter version and they work well. However, my top is only ~2 1/4”.

View John's profile


246 posts in 2063 days

#3 posted 12-09-2014 08:37 PM

I just make dogs out of 3/4 dowel and install a bullet catch on them. They work great. Save your money and make your own. Never have to worry about nicking that plane iron on them, and if you lose them, just make some more.

-- I measured once, cut twice, and its still too short...

View oltexasboy1's profile


255 posts in 2185 days

#4 posted 12-10-2014 08:39 PM

I had some 1/4 hard maple left over from a project , so I drill a 3/4 hole in the center of them, about an 1 1/2 sq. and drove a piece of 3/4 oak dowel through the hole, they work fine for thin stock planning, when chucked up with the end vise. I also took similar pieces of 6/4 square oak offcuts and put 3” dowels thru them. They both work fine and they are cheap and already paid for. I drove a brad through the 1/4 maple to keep the peg from pulling out.The only problem I had was that a 3/4 dowel is real tight in a 3/4 dog hole, a little sand paper cured that.

-- "The pursuit of perfection often yields excellence"

View bondogaposis's profile


5520 posts in 2832 days

#5 posted 12-10-2014 10:45 PM

If your bench is 4 1/2” thick you are going to want the dogs to be longer than the bench is thick. That way you can push them down out of the way and push them back up from underneath. Otherwise when you push them down flush, how are you going to get them back up? I suggest you make your own.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View jdh122's profile


1093 posts in 3299 days

#6 posted 12-10-2014 11:12 PM

I have both lengths, in a 3.5 inch thick bench. They both work fine, although the longer ones have come in handy when doing bowl carving. But as others have mentioned the shorter ones are harder to push up. Just get the longer ones, I’d say.

-- Jeremy, in the Acadian forests

View oltexasboy1's profile


255 posts in 2185 days

#7 posted 01-10-2015 02:53 AM

Little story from Christmas: I had put “bench dogs” on my wish list for family and in order to keep them from ordering a bunch of singles I opted for a package that contains 4 to a pack. My wife thinking I needed more than 1 ordered 4 . I now have 16 bench dogs. Message me your address and I’ll send you a pack of short Kreg bench dogs you can try for free, Merry Xmas.

-- "The pursuit of perfection often yields excellence"

View Mark Kornell's profile

Mark Kornell

1170 posts in 3012 days

#8 posted 01-10-2015 07:49 AM

How many dog holes do you have? Put in each hole and if there are any extras, drill some more holes.

-- Mark Kornell, Kornell Wood Design

View jimmy J's profile

jimmy J

229 posts in 2860 days

#9 posted 01-12-2015 09:27 PM

Olte, thanks for the kind offer. I’ve now got 4 of the short Rockler ones in the mail to try out! Will see how it goes.

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