With reference to my previous question regarding Cam Bolt and Screws, certainly I realised that I have to drill the screws and the bolts too.

So, I need a little info about drilling the holes manually and with the help of a jig. I have gone through some stuff over the internet but a guidance from here would be perfect.

  • 1
    Were you looking for guidance on any particular aspect of this?
    – Graphus
    Commented Mar 13, 2017 at 10:21
  • I have seen the manual measurement way, which I guess I will need some time for that... But I prefer the machine way where time is a crucial factor, any low budget machine you know about. or how to build one?
    – mustangDC
    Commented Mar 15, 2017 at 10:33
  • I don't know that any typical home user would do it by machine — a powered drill yes, but not a drilling machine per se) and if necessary it can be done completely manually (using a hand drill as well as a brace), same way it would have been done commonly by most in the 50s and into the 60s before power drills became common in a home workshop.
    – Graphus
    Commented Mar 16, 2017 at 7:57
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    I feel I should mention in case you don't know, there are other ways you can do similar construction in plywood and other sheet goods that don't require using these fasteners. Many don't require the same precision in drilling for alignment, and one or two would be much cheaper in the long run. See What type of joint should I use for building a piece of furniture that will be assembled and disassembled? as a starting point.
    – Graphus
    Commented Mar 16, 2017 at 8:01

1 Answer 1


These are both simple (when you are knocking together factory flatpack furniture) and surprisingly tricky (when you are making them, not in a factory) joints.

They were developed for factory-made flat-pack furniture, and you can bet the holes were jigged at least up until they might be CNC-ed, because the things have to line up with a great deal of precision, or they simply do not work.

The only time I've ever bought the hardware was to replace missing hardware on factory furniture. I have no dreams of competing with Ikea or the nicer, teak-ier (veneer mostly, of course) mid-century Danish factories.

I would spend some effort on making a jig that does both sets of holes (probably at 90 degrees to each other) and has means to register when clamping so that everything is as well-constrained as can be. Clamp it on the face flatways, drill the big cam holes. Clamp it to the edge of that panel, drill the holes where the bolts come to the clamps. Clamp it to the face of the other panel and drill the holes for the inserts.

  • I agree jigging is the way to go here if doing it a fair bit, but there's no reason it couldn't be done with precision using normal careful marking out and drilling procedures. What I was wondering about is whether the OP needed advice on the very basics like how to drill square to the face, drill to a controlled/consistent depth.
    – Graphus
    Commented Mar 15, 2017 at 8:26

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