Thinking about building a router table

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by HEADKNOCKER, May 30, 2015.

  1. HEADKNOCKER

    HEADKNOCKER Active Member

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    I am thinking of making a router table out of the area on either side of the Craftsman table saw to mount the 3 1/2hp router I bought at the pawn shop for $20..

    Craftsman Professional Plunge Router 15.0amp #315.275110

    Sounds simple enough right??
    Drill some holes, mount it flush with existing table saw height, built a router fence from plywood scaps.. A few countersunk bolts & washers
    What say you all who have already done this..
    Pictures would be great if possible..
    Thanks!!
    Gary/Hk
     
  2. TKOjams

    TKOjams Well-Known Member

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    Do it!!! I used the side of my Craftsman Contractors table saw as a router table, it's dead solid and it works great!!!It also takes advantage of some wasted space on the saw top.

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  3. Duplex Dave

    Duplex Dave Active Member

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    Nice! I was wondering about your set up TKO.
    I'm sure there are 1,000's of ways to do it. I have a crappy little Craftsmen sheet metal stand. It has to be clamped down. I'm glad I don't have to use it much.
    I was going to convert a kitchen cabinet but I don;t have the room in my shop.
    Any sturdy table will work.
     
  4. TKOjams

    TKOjams Well-Known Member

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    It's not too fancy but very affective.:yesway:
     
  5. HEADKNOCKER

    HEADKNOCKER Active Member

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    That's almost exactly what I had in mind.. Very Nice!!
    I saw yours has a light in it & that's a bonus..

    I have a Black and Decker Workmate that my compound miter saw is clamped too, & I might just make a board to mount the router to it...
    [​IMG]
    I didn't want to buy anything, maybe the three bolts?, I've got some 3/4" plywood scraps + two 3/4" ply doors off of someones home made intertainment center that just might do the trick.. Got a few 2x6 treated scraps I found at the church up the block.. The pews they threw out were press board rubbish falling apart or I would have scarfed them too, I dreamed they were 100 year old mahogany when I saw em..

    Hey there's this hard as a rock heavy wooden block that Grandpaw Gatterer had with his tools.. I'll have to get a picture of it, It must be some sort of tool? I haven't a clue what it was used for, maybe a sanding block? Who Knows? I'm asking!! Looks really dark but doesn't appear to be ebony & heavy as a brick??
     
  6. Duplex Dave

    Duplex Dave Active Member

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    There you go, perfect!
    Just make sure the router is perpendicular to the board when it's all said and done and you're good to go!
     
  7. HEADKNOCKER

    HEADKNOCKER Active Member

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    Well doing it the way I did I sacrificed 3/4 - 1" of plunge depth making the router useless with the only bit I have, Yeah I need to buy some of the longer ones with the bearings & for sure ain't gonna buy em at Woodcraft.. The particle board that the workmate is made from is some metric thickness, guess it's made in China? & that runes any ideas I had of using my scraps to make a fence.. Or I'll just make up new boards from 3/4" ply???
    I like how the front piece is movable & if the fence was on it, it would be adjustable but not really solid as the threaded parts have plastic nut parts instead of metal & would have to be screwed & shimmed or clamped to be 100% ridgid..

    Drilled Big Hole, Then marked where the 5/16" holes will go right dead center of that board..
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    Holes drilled & countersunk
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    Mount Router Base with the three bolts & washers
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    Being the one side only has one bolt because of the turret I used a longer bolt that goes thru the aluminum base & put a nut on it & removed the two threaded thumb bolts for the adjustable hand held fence..
    [​IMG]
    Just laying some scraps out to try an figure out a fence, NOTE: The router bit is loose & way up out of the collet about about 3/4"
    [​IMG]

    I'm going to put a power strip with OFF/ON switch on the tool tray & mount a light behind it & figure out a removable/adjustable fence..
    This router is a monster @ 15amps & 3 1/2 HP.. I need to order a 1/2" collet from sears & look into some bits, I don't like the idea of a Router Bit Extension or these Cheapo Bits
    www.ebay.com/itm/1-4-1-2-End-Dual-Flutes-Straight-Shank-Trim-Router-Flush-Trim-Cutter-Bit-Tool
    These are grenades sent from Hong Kong to Kill folks, Look good for the $$ BUT?? :scratch: $2.29??
    What would you use them for?? Balsa wood? Call it Chromyte , sounds fancier..
    I wouldn't want one of those tuning 10,000 - 22,000 RPM anywhere near me.. FREE S&H Too!!
    :io:
     
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2015
  8. Renkenstein

    Renkenstein Well-Known Member

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    [​IMG]




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    My router table is nothing more than this humble contraption. I made an acrylic insert plate that makes bit changing a lot easier. A maple board with a planed straight edge serves as the fence. I added bolts and wingnuts to hold it in place. Works pretty good for what's needed in my shop.
     
    W2XXZ likes this.
  9. HEADKNOCKER

    HEADKNOCKER Active Member

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    It's really hard to tell from your guys photos, But is the clear plastic insert only there to make it easier to remove & change the bits, It's not the support for the router?
    I can go up in size on my large round hole with a door knob hole saw & bend me up an obstruction wrench by heating & bending it in the vise, I could also route a step & put a piece of plexi glass in there but the plunge depth I lost by using the close to 7/8" board makes the router almost useless, Also I only have the 1/4" nut & collet for the old craftsman router, I guess that's what you get for $20 @ the pawn shop, Sears no longer offers the 1/2" collet & nut but has a listing for the nut separate & have been told that a Ryobis collet is the same/similar & then a 1/2" Router Bit Extension could used, This also has allen wrench bolts that make it easy to change bits from above but cost $50-$75, I could buy a new router for that almost NEW..
    Is the bit w/ bearing long enough to use without the extra 7/8" I lost by using the board? Hey I'm new to this stuff but know not to leave the bit hanging out half way, Only 1/16" to allow for heat expansion.. I'm gonna go bye Home depot later today after my wifes dr. appointment & look at their bits & maybe sears too? I'm sure they will cost me more than the $20 I have invested in the Craftsman 3 1/2hp Plunge Router
    Here's the 1/2" to 1/4" router extension they sell for $50-$75
    [​IMG]
    Also my workmates front clamping board has about an 1/8" - 3/16" upward bow to the center of it , The part that says Workmate 400 on it, I can bolt the bow out with a scrap from underneath but haven't gotten around to that quite yet.. The board the router is mounted to is nice & flat BTW & the router is perfectly mounted perpendicular..

    Yesterday while drilling holes in my metal workbench for a vise I had a 1/2" craftsman cobalt drill bit break on me with a corded dewalt drill & the pieces went flying but luckily I was wearing WORK GLOVES & SAFETY GLASSES & all is OK, Thought I'd share that, You can never be too safe while working in the shop!!
     
  10. TKOjams

    TKOjams Well-Known Member

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  11. HEADKNOCKER

    HEADKNOCKER Active Member

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    I have no idea where to acquire any of that mylar acrylic sheets but I guess I'm gonna find out.. How thick is that piece if you don't mind me asking?? 1/4"??
    The piece of wood that the table I/m using is a tight 7/8" thick, The router is variable speed too BTW..
    What type of bit you using? From Home Depot? About $18? Diameter?
    The question man!! Gary/Hk

    Just a Pic I swiped online of this $20 router, It's a monster..
    [​IMG]
     
  12. TKOjams

    TKOjams Well-Known Member

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    It's 1/4" polycarbonate, and I have a bunch of it. If you're interested I'll sell you a piece.
     
  13. HEADKNOCKER

    HEADKNOCKER Active Member

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    I was thinking about scrapping the whole thing so far & cutting myself two pieces of 3/4 Plywood & using some .050" thick metal plates I have three/four thick, drill the four holes & the center one about 1/2" or smaller, larger than 1/4" Maybe 3/8" & countersink the factory screws, Cut a hole big enough to remove the monster router with my jig saw & rout the edges to accept the metal plates, I suppose I'll have to round the corners or chisel the wood to get them perfecto..
    You've given me some great ideas..
    I'll let you know on the polycarbonate, I have some other TOP SECRET ideas for some of it too!! HaHa:D
    Lets see how it goes, I'll have just a little time this after noon to work on it..
    Gary/Hk :metal:

    So far I have zero dollars in the Router Table & The router cost me $20 at the Pawn Shop a few months ago with 1 bit..:dude:
     
  14. HEADKNOCKER

    HEADKNOCKER Active Member

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    Here's what it looks like so far!!
    Made a adjustable Fence for the Plunge Router out of four cheapo 1/4 deep well sockets, Thread all, nuts, washers, scrap of 3/4" plywood & four metal plates.
    Should be able to pull it off tomorrow.. :hmm:
    [​IMG]
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  15. HEADKNOCKER

    HEADKNOCKER Active Member

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    Working on the adjustable rip fence part this evening, It's 120 degrees in the garage today in the shade.. Taking a break now in the AC.. Ahhhhhhh!! Drink!
    Got another slot to make in the top, cutting them by hand with the router, we'll see how it turns out later on.. Pics to come..
    Gary/Hk
     
  16. HEADKNOCKER

    HEADKNOCKER Active Member

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    Well the router table is finally coming together, I cut two 1/2" slots for the adjustable rip fence with two fancy finger lock nuts + 1/2" toggle bolts from a hospital bed, Made rip fence & glued & screwed it together, Made it so my miter from my table saw can be used on the router table, still need to make a small spacer for underneath the miter & a fence for the miter for the router, I didn't mount the router up in these pics because I'd just used it to cut the two 1/2" slots for the adjustable fence in the 3/4" plywood top..
    I used four layers of sheet metal that I have in the garage, 9"x12", Got several more of these..
    Just a few more thing to do before the router table is done.. :hmm:
    It was 110+ degrees in the garage today, bet I lost 5 pounds & drank a gallon of tea..
    Feels great here in the house after a shower & a cold drink in the AC in my undies.. Ahhhhhhhh!!!! Oh Yeah!!:dude:
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    Also note: Two holes past the miter before the plate with nuts inset from the bottom for bolting my chop saw to this table when not in use..

    Need to clean the shop up, It's a mess now with tools everywhere.. sawdust.. Good sweeping & tidy up some..

    I'm now waiting for my Les Paul MIII to gas off before I wetsand & go on to the black painting & clear coats..
    Gave me time to work on the table some, I'm gonna start to do a few things to my Jackson DK2M Pile-O-Skulls Project..
    My Son broke his foot last monday & is selling his PRS to help with the bills etc. & I told him "NO" but he's already promised it to somebody..
    I'm gonna buy or make him something way better than the old PRS CE-22 with Dragons Pickups..
    Going to give him my Gibson Les Paul MIII & Jackson DK2M Skulls till I can come up with something better..
    I need a local source for some Killer wood.. Need to look into that.. Flamed maple, spalted, ebony, tiger etc.. Where??? :hmm: :scratch:

    1997 PRS CE-22 with Dragons
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2015
  17. HEADKNOCKER

    HEADKNOCKER Active Member

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    The paint has cured on the MIIIs neck so I went to wet sanding it 1000/2000 grit, I'm not done yet!!
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    Reclaimed a nice Hunter ceiling fan/light for in the front of the shop, had to extend it down 8" to clear the roof as it is a ceiling hugger with some scrap/warped 2x6..It's COOL!
    [​IMG]
    Then I worked on the router table a bit, added a piece of plexi-glass to the stack of 9x12 metal plates four of them + plexi = .2500" 1/4" thick,haven't routed the depth for the stack being the polycarbonate may be off slightly in thickness, Note my center hole is off center just a smidge & planned on opening it up some any how, it's 1/2" now, probably go up to 3/4"? TKOjams is going to send me a piece of polycarbonate to take the place of the stacked metal/plexi pancake stack.. I think for my mostly just trim work I can leave the fence solid, not split in two & offset but may opt for that & try an make me up a jointer with this setup?
    [​IMG]
    Now when some money comes in I'm gonna get a router bit with a bearing & without & there's another question? Should I get one with the bearing on the tip or at the other end? For plunge work the base would be ideal, for table work the tip would.. Or all three? Now on where to get some decent wood around the Louisville metro or hopefully more nearby Clarksville/Jeffersonville Indiana
     
  18. SimonB15

    SimonB15 Active Member

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    You're going to need a nice mix of router bits. A 2" bit the bearing on the tip will get you out of trouble for routing body outlines, and you'll need bits with bearings on the shank for doing things like pickup cavities and neck pockets.
     
  19. Heretic

    Heretic Well-Known Member

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    A lot of 1/4" plexi/lexan is actually 0.236" thick, or 6mm. Make sure to measure it with a caliper before you route to final depth.
     
  20. HEADKNOCKER

    HEADKNOCKER Active Member

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    Roger that on the thickness of the lexan & getting several "GOOD" router bits..
    Haven't went much further on my Router Table Build but did go out there for a while on this "Fathers Day"...
    My shop is a disaster & needs a good cleaning & tools put away..
    I did visit the hardware store = Grandpaw Gatterer's Stash looking for widgets for the router table, I want to cut my fence in half & put thread all adjustments with wing nuts at the rear so the 2 fences can be adjusted independently..
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    Messy Shop
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    Bench Top Covers getting flattened by plants
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    4th Son Lightning aka Bunner Von Bun sitting in his favorite chair
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    Beware: The Vicious Beast.. RUN AWAY!!
     

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