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Bench Mounted Router Table

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Bench Mounted Router Table
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  http://www.instructables.com/id/Bench-mounted-Router-Table/  Food   Living   Outside   Play   Technology   Workshop Bench-mounted Router Table by jdege  on November 2, 2009 Table of Contents Bench-mounted Router Table ....................................................................................................1 Intro: Bench-mounted Router Table .............................................................................................2 Step 1: Laying out the mortise .................................................................................................2 Step 2: Cutting the mortise ...................................................................................................4 Step 3: Laminating the top ....................................................................................................7 Step 4: Inserting the leveling screws ............................................................................................9 Step 5: Trim to size .........................................................................................................12 Step 6: Edge-banding the top .................................................................................................13 Step 7: Miter track and T-track .................................................................................................16 Step 8: Stretchers ..........................................................................................................19 Step 9: A minor fix ..........................................................................................................21 Step 10: Bolting it to the top ...................................................................................................22 Step 11: Finished ..........................................................................................................25 Related Instructables ........................................................................................................25 Advertisements ...............................................................................................................26 Comments ................................................................................................................26  http://www.instructables.com/id/Bench-mounted-Router-Table/  Intro: Bench-mounted Router Table Ask any bunch of woodworkers which is their most essential fixed power tool and you'll get many answers. But ask for the top three, and they will always include therouter table.In recent years, router manufacturers have begun offering routers with height adjustments that can be accessed through the base, when the router is hanging upsidedown in a router table. This eliminates the cost and complexity of incorporating a router lift into the design to control the height of the bit. These new routers have thatbuilt-in.Inspired by these, a number of writers have published designs for router tables using these new routers that aren't really tables, they're router table tops, meant to beattached to an existing workbench.Bench-Mounted Router TableStow-and-Go Router TableStow-Away Router TableWhen I was building my own Real Woodworker's Workbench , I had to buy a second router. I decided to buy one with an integrated lift, and to use it to build a router-table attachment for my bench, similar to those described above.It took me longer to get around to it than I had planned, but a few weeks ago I finally got started.I made it out of a 24 x48 piece of 3/4' Melamine-coated particle board, with a 3/4' backing of Medium Density Fiberboard (MDF), using a commercially purchased insertplate and fence. Melamine provides a slick, smooth, easily-cleaned surface, which makes it a pretty good choice for a top. 3/4' isn't enough to prevent bending, though,and the fiberboard core isn't as dense as MDF, hence the MDF backing. Image Notes 1. A bench-mounted router table Image Notes 1. 3/4 Melamine2. 3/4 MDF3. Commercial fence4. Commercial insert plate5. This is a piece of an edge-glued oak countertop, leftover from building thebench. I am making into a cutting board, and I need a router table to complete it. Step 1: Laying out the mortise The router, in a router table, is screwed to a router table insert plate. The insert plate is a flat piece of stable material (often metal, sometimes acrylic or wood), that sitsinto a reset mortised into the top. The first task in building the table is to cut out this mortise. This is usually done with a hand-held router.I bought a commercial plate, and the manufacturer offered a template sized to match the plate. I didn't buy one. It required a 1/2 pattern cutting bit, which I didn't have,and didn't have any other immediate need for. So instead of shelling out $30 for the template and bit, I made up a template of my own that I could use with a guidebushing kit and the bits that I already had.A guide bushing is used with a straight bit. It rides along the side of the template, keeping the bit a set distance away from the template. The critical factor is the distancebetween the outside of the bushing and the edge of the bit.I constructed my template out of straight strips of 1/4 MDF, held in place with double-sided carpet tape. As I said, the critical dimension is the offset, the distancebetween the outside of the bushing and the outside of the bit. This equals the radius of the bushing minus the radius of the bit, or half of the difference between thediameter of the bushing and the diameter of the bit.Fasten the insert plate to the top, in the position you want it to be, with double-sided tape. Tape straight strips of 1/4 MDF around the plate, separated from it by yourcalculated distance. Peel up the insert plate, and then tape down some pieces of 1/4 MDF in the center, to help provide stability for the router. The position of theseinside pieces isn't critical, so long as the gap between them and the outside pieces is wide enough that you can route an area greater than the width of the lip you want toend up with.I added some small triangular pieces into the corners, to keep the bit from cutting too sharp a radius.  http://www.instructables.com/id/Bench-mounted-Router-Table/  Image Notes 1. The finished template Image Notes 1. This is the distance that matters - from the edge of the bit to the edge of theguide bushing. Image Notes 1. We measure the diameter of the bit2. We measure the diameter of the bushing3. We're calculating the offset. It's the difference in the radii - or half thedifference between the diameters4. Subtract5. Divide by two6. Check - the diameter of the bit plus twice the offset should equal the diameterof the bushing7. Note for those who think that only geeks and nerds do math: There is anexception for math done in carpenter's pencil. I promise - you can do this sort ofmath without damaging your he-man macho image. Image Notes 1. Determine where you want the insert plate to be, and fasten it there withdouble-side carpet tape2. A can of lacquer thinner, ready to fall off the shelf - unwise3. Benchdogs in the top and in the end vise hold the melamine panel firmly. Noworries about it shifting under the force of the router.4. It's amazing how much junk accumulates on every horizontal surface in ashop5. This piece of Melamine is where I screwed up entirely, on my first attempt toroute the mortise. Fortunately, Melamine is cheap.  http://www.instructables.com/id/Bench-mounted-Router-Table/  8. One of the great things about Melamine is that it's washable. These pencilmarks wipe right off.9. You can't get the sort of accuracy you need for this, eyeballing the bit with atape measure.10. Notice the chipping. We'll be cutting the top to size, then banding withhardwood, so that this doesn't happen to our completed top - much Image Notes 1. Use the inside jaws of the caliper to set the template at our calculated distancefrom the plate. .2. Use double-sided carpet tape to hold everything in place3. This piece is positioned, but simply weighted down - not taped - as an aid topositioning the next piece, which is taped. I'll tape this piece last.4. This piece is taped5. This piece is ready to be taped6. For cutting the tape Image Notes 1. Once the outside pieces are in place, remove the insert plate2. Pieces in the center provide a more stable base for the router. Positioningisn't critical, so long as the routed area is wider than the width of the lip youwant.3. Triangular inserts keep the router bit from cutting too sharp a radius in thecorners Step 2: Cutting the mortise Once the template has been built up, it should be routed out. This should be done in two passes, once taking a shallow cut, then a second pass at full depth.Once the mortise has been routed out, remove the center section by drilling a hole in each corner and joining them with a jigsaw. The resulting mortise can then be testedfor width and length.The next step is to peel up all the pieces that had made up the template, both on the table and in the center rectangle that you've cut out. You'll want the router base tomove easily across them, so make sure you remove all the tape residue. (I found that acetone and a razor blade made it a reasonably easy job).Remove the guide bushing and the bit you've been using with it, and switch to a straight bit that has the same radius as the insert plate. Position the pieces of template toguide along the side of the router, preventing it from cutting farther into the table top, and then take another pass with the router, cleaning up the bottom of the cut, andmaking properly-rounded corners. Once done, the plate should fit neatly into the hole.I made one more pass, with the guides set 5/8 closer to the mortise, and the bit set deeper, to make a cleaner edge on the lip than had been left by the jigsaw. This isn'tnecessary, but it's little work. Image Notes 1. Bit set shallow2. Routed out shallow3. Notice - the lacquer thinner is no longer teetering over the edge... Image Notes 1. How much did we cut? How much more do we need to cut?
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