Setting dowel holes without a drill | Tools & Technology

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Shelves, wardrobes, towel hooks, picture rails – a lot is dowelled when objects are to be attached to a wall permanently and durably. That’s not too difficult either: drill a hole, insert the dowel, screw in the screw, done! Is there an easier way? The engineers at Wiha found room for simplification anyway and developed the new one dowel racket. If you have this tool at hand, you can often leave the drill or cordless screwdriver in the tool box when making the dowel hole, because wall building materials that are not too hard can be tackled with this stable helper with a spirited hammer blow.

The dowel punch is applied to the desired position, then it is driven with a few hammer blows to the desired depth in softer building materials such as aerated concrete, lightweight concrete, numerous hollow blocks or plasterboard. What you save in any case is the transport of a power tool, finding and inserting the drill, possibly the way to the socket or laying an extension cord and some noise. According to the manufacturer, there is also less dirt when setting dowels with a striking tool – that sounds plausible.

Put on dowel hole beater Create a dowel hole with a hammer blow

The dowel hole beater measures 6 mm in diameter. This is probably one of the most common dowel dimensions for fastening work in living spaces. Also practical: the blade of the tool has a millimeter scale on the side, so you can always see how deep you are already in the material while you are working. And during the development, a problem was also considered that sometimes causes a somewhat uneasy feeling when drilling: If you hit a power line with the tool, the most energy flows into the blade – the striking cap is galvanically isolated from it.

In our opinion, however, it is not at all likely that you will cut through a line with the striking tool unnoticed: After all, the blade does not work its way unperturbed by the motor, but with the hand holding it you feel the reaction to each individual blow and will check the springy resistance first before simply continuing to hit. In addition, the tip of the tool is shaped as a PH2 blade and does not easily cut through PVC insulation.

Back to the roots

Dowel iron from the 1960s

When we saw the dowel racket, we were immediately reminded of the dowel iron (photo) that the author’s father used to set dowels in the pumice concrete walls of his parents’ house in the 1960s. However, you can also see the decades that have passed in tool production: With the galvanic isolation between the striking surface and the blade, the scale for the striking depth and the much more ergonomic handle shape, Wiha has significantly developed the concept further.

What is also pleasing in any case: Here you are reminded again that not everything has to work electrically. In many cases, power tools have made life much easier for craftsmen and do-it-yourselfers, but if you can do it faster by hand, then you don’t have to resort to machinery at all costs.

Anyone who would like to take a closer look at the new tool can find it in specialist shops, where it is sold in a set with four dowels. More information can be found on the manufacturer’s website, where the set is also available for purchase for just under 28 euros.

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