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Soup Up Your Router Table

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Soup Up Your Router Table

A Host of Great Accessories

By Dave Munkittrick

Even if you already own a router table, you’ll want to build these accessories to increase safety expand your routing capabilities and improve your results, Specifically designed for use with the American Woodworker Router Table, these accessories are easily adapted to use on almost any router-table system. 

 

Featherboards

Featherboards are like having an extra pair of hands. They’re probably the most used router-table accessory (Photo 1).

Figure 1: Featherboards

These featherboards are made from clear, solid-wood stock like pine or poplar. There are two sizes (see Cutting List, below). The longer ones are mounted on the table and the shorter ones on the fence. Cut the 45-degree angles first. The 1/4-in. slots can be cut on the router table and the feathers are cut using a bandsaw.

 

A Stop Block

Stop blocks are a must for making accurate stopped cuts (Photo 2). 

Figure 2: Stop Block

Cut hardwood runners (V) wide enough to just fit into the T-track slot, but not as deep. Glue the strips on the blocks, and drill out for the 1-1/4-in.1/4-20 hex bolt.

 

A Crosscut Sled

A crosscut sled eliminates the need for a miter track (Photo 3). The sled slides along a fence-mounted T-track using UHMW glides.

Figure 3: Crosscut Sled

The only tricky part to making this accessory is getting the holes for the bolts just right. Simply hold the completed jig up to the fence with the base on the table and mark the T-track opening. Then, drill your holes in the center of the marked opening. UHMW T-track slides guide the sled along the fence.

 

A Free-Hand Routing Guard

A free-hand guard for safe routing when a fence won’t work (Photo 4). The guard attaches to the T-track at the front of the table. Routing is done from the back of the table utilizing the large table space for support of the panel stock. The guard is adjustable to allow stock of different thicknesses.

Figure 4: Freehand Routing Guard

Assemble the base (parts B, C and D) with glue and screws. Then build the hood (parts E through H, N, P and W). Slip the hood over the base and glue the two 1/4-in. guide dowels into the base. The winged bolts allow you to adjust the height of the hood. Drill two 1/4-in. holes at the back of the base for the hold-down knobs.

 

A Tall Fence

A tall fence is provides extra support for vertical routing  (Photo 5).

Figure 5: Tall Fence

This tall fence fits between the two outside supports of the main fence. Build the two supports (U and T) and attach them to the main fence. Use a square to align the top (S) with the face of the main fence and secure with screws or winged bolts.

 


 




1. Featherboards make routing safer and better. Safer because they hold the work against the table and fence instead of your hands. Better because the constant pressure holds the piece on both sides of the bit for smooth, washboard-free profiles.


 


2. A stop block is indispensable for cuts that don’t go the entire length of the board. Ours mounts on the fence T-track for quick settings that won’t budge.


 


3.  A crosscut sled replaces the miter slot found on many commercial tables. It allows you to safely perform end-grain cutting, such as the cope cut on this rail, without having to set your fence perfectly parallel to a miter slot.


 

4. A freehand guard and a starting pin are a must for routing curved profiles, such as this arch-topped door panel. Dust collection isn’t perfect, but it keeps the bit area clear.


 

5. A tall fence makes vertical routing safe and accurate. It provides plenty of support for work that must be stood on end to rout, such as drawer joints, lock-miter joints and vertical panel raising.

 


Sources

Pull from AW #99 Page 98

 

 


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