I don’t have a lot of electric powered tools but in the past I have used routers and liked their versatility. I usually build smaller projects and have been using a trim router for a while but wanted to build a router table to make routing safer and easier. I wanted something full featured but without being a large tool.
I started to design the table on the computer but eventually it became a design as you go project. Here are some shots and descriptions of the final result…
The router table sits on a rolling table that was specifically sized so that the top of the router table matches the height of my bench. Moving the router to the bench gives me more surface area if I am working on something where I need more real estate.
This shows the front of the router set up with the fence attached. I also made a few accessories like the push hold downs. I cut up an old mouse pad for the hold down bottoms for maximum grip. They give more confidence pushing stock through the spinning router bit. The dust port was fashioned from galvanized duct pipe rescued from a dumpster (yeah, I dive now and then). Dust removal works remarkably well with a shop vac. The top is two 1/2″ ply sheets sandwiched together and capped. The main router box is constructed from 1/2″ ply.
The other side of the fence. Lots of knobs to cut out! Actually this is the side I usually work from as the router adjustments are easier to access, I just reverse the fence. The router lift adjusts vertically and horizontally making for some interesting router bit profiles. The vertical lift adjustment works with a split nut release to quickly raise or lower the router before any fine adjustments.
A close up of the router lift. The “button” on the left, midway down, is pushed in to release a split nut enabling the lift to move up and down quickly. The wheel on the bottom raises and lowers the router for fine adjustments. The knob at the top left is used to position the router laterally. It will bring a bit from 5 degree negative vertical up to an angle of 48 degrees positive from vertical.
Here is a close up of the router tipped about 45 degrees in towards the fence. The fence has split faces made from melamine shelving. I am quite pleased how it turned out and since all mating surfaces and feet are lined with window insulation or high density foam there is virtually no vibration and it’s very quiet, at least until wood meets a bit. I hope this will give you some ideas on constructing a router table of your own (if you don’t already have one). I look forward to any questions or comments you may have on this router table build.
Filed under: Bench Top Woodworking Tools