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Getting to know my router better,

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  • Getting to know my router better,

    It is funny. When i first began to outfit my shop, i bought the table saw and jointer. One of the first hand held tools I bought was the router. I bought the makita rf1100 kit which has the fixed and plunge base. Anyway for the most part until receintley it has been used merely to flush cut or clean up/put on a decrative edge. I have a dado that i use to cut rabbits and a biscuit joiner to cut biscuit holes. I have just receintley begun using it to remove wood make mortises, etc.

    Anyway I am having a problem trying to figure out how to make a jig and/or set things up to accomplish the following task.

    Essentially I want to take a 5/8" thick piece of stock, 4" long and hollow out the inside approx half way down, and square up the edges.

    Well obviously a sharp chisel can square those corners, but i honestly can not figure out how to set up the board to use the router for this purpose. The actual internal dimensions of each piece will vary slightly so i need to split the difference and get them as close as possible.

    Is it best to use a router for this or should i just cut flat boards, run them through the thickness planer for a uniform thickness and then cut strips to glue to the top and bottom to make the box?

    It seems that might be a little more precise?

  • #2
    I think the hollowing could be done better and safer with a drill press than a router. It would still require you to square the holes if round ones are not acceptable.

    Bob R


    • #3

      There are a few ways to tackle this project. It sounds like you are making a large mortice with a set depth. Have you considered making a template that could be followed with a guide bushing and straight bit?

      Alternatively you can use an offset gauge and some scrap to act as stops to keep your edges clean and freehand the interior.

      I recommend getting the book Router Magic by Bill Hylton. ISBN 0-7621-0185-7


      • #4

        cool. I have been looking for a GOOD router book. Thanks



        • #5
          Ed, what in the world are you doing, cutting up 'rabbits' with a router?! My grandmother used to raise rabbits for food, but she always cut them up with a knife. Wouldn't using your router for that void the warranty; and doesn't it make quite a mess?

          Oh...I think you meant 'rabbets'.... Never mind.

          To address your problem: Assuming you have a router table, why not clamp four lengths of wood strips to the top to form the four sides of a temporary template. Then move the stock around inside it. That way, once you knew the dimensions for one piece, you could adjust for the different sizes of boards by moving the strips slightly further apart, or closer together, and reclamping.
          Nolo illigitamati carborundum


          • #6
            My sincere apologies for the misspelling. Brain not too sharp these days. No, no router table, that is the problem. I am figuring on just using the thickness planer to make a thinner piece and rip 4 pieces of square stock and use some wood glue.

            Rabbets. How stupid of me


            • #7
              Why not build a router table suited to this task out of scrap 3/4 plywood. drill a small hole in the center for the router bit and mount the router. Make 4 adjustable fences out of 3/4 ply. Cut two 2" (or more depends on how adjustable you need it) slots in each of the fences. Drill holes for carriage bolts in the center of the adjustment span (placed in the approximate location of the fence stop) through the table and attach the fence with the carriage bolt up from the bottom of the table using a washer and T-handle (or some type of knob) to clamp in place at the top.


              • #8
                Sounds like a good job for a jig. Use 3/4" or thicker material at least as big as your router base plus the piece. Route a 5/8" deep mortise the size of your piece. Then use the appropriate size guide bushings and straight bits to cut a hole completely through the jig that will give you a template the appropriate size for the hole you want. Turn the jig over, clamp the piece down in the mortise, and route through the smaller hole. Safer than holding the piece on the router table and you can save the jig for reuse.