Glad it worked out for you.
Ideally, you'd want a brass rod because brass is softer than barrel steel and won't scratch the barrel. Sometimes you've just got to use what's available though.
In regards to wood dowels, seems like lots of guys have used them successfully but there's also horror stories out there. Better safe than sorry. If I had to, I'd TRY wood but I sure wouldn't hit it very hard and if it didn't work right away I'd wait for the brass.
Still happily answering to the call-sign Peetza.
The problem, as you so eloquently put it, is choice.
He is no fool who gives what he can not keep to gain what he can not lose.
-Jim Eliott, paraphrasing Philip Henry.