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Cut flush and drill. They're relatively soft. When the metal is 90% gone, they may fall out, or at least chip out. I'm afraid to heat or hammer on cast parts.
Depending on location or access restrictions, drill it crossways, insert a pin or a bolt then work it out with a pair of rolling wedge bars. A crowned or castellated socket can be used to spin the pin during the prying process.
This method is less likely to damage the casting if the drill gets off center and if still on the vehicle, downward drilling pressure is easier.
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I've had luck in other applications using a set of diagonal side cutters (dikes, to the electricians) to grip the dowel and slowly levering it out, a bite at a time. This works realy well on keys stuck in keyways, BTW.
If that doesn't work, I center drill, followed buy drilling a small relieving hole and then finally use a left-handed drill of the appropriate size.
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I guess the answer depends a bit on why you are removing it. If you are removing it to reuse, the destructive removal methods aren't helpful. If it is damaged (how?) the extent of the damage eliminates some of the options.
It was to reuse them, but I guess I will be buying or making some new ones
In that case, the vise-grip option is in play. It will put a few grooves in parallel to the axis of the pin, but usually not destroy it. Use the vise-grips to rotate the pin and provide something to pry against. Another option is to drive it into the housing until the housing breaks. Then you can knock it out from the back side.
Drill and tap with a 1/4 20 thread. Set deep socket on to and insert a long 1/4 20 bolt with washer and pull it out.
and call fastenal or mcmaster for the new dowels - they are super cheap.
Found that a piece of 7/16 steel rod will work. I am going to just make some...
If you have that laying around, at least that will save you a trip to the store.
Typical dowel pins are ground to 0.0005 total tolerance. Steel bar/rod is usually +/-0.002, or 0.004 total.
I am replacing my damaged trans case. New one is missing dowels on one side. Was going to use the dowels out of the old case. I can see they are easier to make or buy than remove.
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