So, you’ve mastered your new router—or, so you think. Now it’s time to unlock the next level of routing techniques by building your very own router table. A handheld router is an amazingly capable tool that’s only improved upon once fixed to a router table. Not only will more cuts and applications be possible, but nearly every application of a handheld router will be more easily done on a router table. Follow along to learn how to build your own router table.
What Is a Router Table?
A router table is a flat work surface with a centered mount that holds a router in place with the bit protruding upward through the table. This allows the user to cut material without having to hold the router, increasing control and accuracy.
Before You Begin
A quick internet search will yield a seemingly endless display of router table varieties, each with its own specific design, accessories, and reasons why it’s the best router table. This is because the best router table for one woodworker may be drastically different than another. While the bare bones of a router table stay the same, minor design tweaks and a wide array of accessories can make it hard to know what’s necessary and what’s overkill.
The steps outlined below will yield a router table that can be customized to work with various work surfaces and mounting options. It can even be used as a portable router table and clamped to sawhorses, though we’ll outline how to build a basic wooden base. The standard router table accessories listed below will be included, but any of the luxury router table accessories can easily be added during construction or at a later date.
Standard Router Table Accessories
Consider this the first level of options for a DIY router table. These are accessories that would benefit nearly every user, from advanced woodworkers to beginner DIYers.
- Adjustable Fence: An adjustable wall of wood that is positioned perpendicularly to the table that material rides against while being cut. This will make the router table quicker and easier to use, as well as improve the accuracy of cuts.
- Router Insert Plate: An aftermarket plate, typically made from metal, that’s built into the router table top to accurately and securely hold the router in place. Many models feature interchangeable rings that fit around a variety of bits.
- Safety Switch: A safety switch is used to reposition an easy-to-use on/off switch to a place that is accessible and away from the router. This will greatly increase the safety of the unit while improving usability.
Luxury Router Table Accessories
Consider this “luxury” tier to be specialty accessories and options that are nice to have, but aren’t crucial to the function of the router table.
- Featherboards: Featherboards are adjustable accessories that apply pressure to the material as it’s fed into the router table. This improves the accuracy of cuts and prevents kickback, which can damage the material and pose a safety risk. Featherboards can be installed on the table and on the fence.
- Miter Sled: A miter sled allows the user to hold and push the material at a specified angle while feeding it through the router table.
- T-track: T-tracks are embedded aluminum rails that have a T-shaped slot for accessories to slide through and lock into place. These can be used to mount an adjustable fence, featherboards, or a miter sled.
- Router Lift: A router lift is typically built into a custom router plate insert and allows the user to adjust the cutting depth of the bit from above the table.
- Dust Collection System: A dust collection system provides a dust port and a mount for a shop vac hose. When properly installed, this system will remove all sawdust as it’s created.
Routers, like most power tools, are not inherently safe and should be handled with extreme caution. A router mounted on a router table features a high-spinning bit protruding from the work surface. For this reason, never wear loose-fitting clothes, always keep your hair tied back, and forgo work gloves that could be snagged by the bit. Always operate with your hands away from the bit and use safety devices whenever possible.
Disclaimer: Curated and re-published here. We do not claim anything as we translated and re-published using google translator. All images and Tattoo Design ideas shared only for information purpose.