This project is really coming together. That biscuit jointer really makes quick and easy work of cabinet assembly. I have never really gotten a chance to use it before.
I ordered an Incra Magni-Lock router plate through Woodcraft. It seems to be on the slow boat. But hopefully it will come at about the time I need it.
Anyway, more chronicles of the progress I made on my day off yesterday:
Here is the cabinet fascia with half lap joinery, 3/4” x 2” Beechwood (the most inexpensive hardwood at the local yard), glued and clamped together:
Yes its true, my clamp collection is used to small jewelry boxes. But I say, work smarter (and cheaper), not harder! So for $15 these ratcheting tie-down straps held the cabinet face securely to the carcass until the glue dried. The whole face was biscuited to the carcass:
The clue has dried and I found some casters I like. They have rubber wheels and a lock that I like for about $11 each.
Finally, the cabinet gets flipped to rest an all fours. Also, you can see I added a melamine shelf for under the router. This slick surface will allow the dust to slide toward the dust collector more easily. At this point I had not figured out how to best direct the dust toward the chute, or where to put the chute.
I had decided that I would use the bottom-left space for a dedicated dust collector. I figured out that I would have just enough room for the smallest Craftsman vac that still has a 2 1/2” hose (the 6 gal model). This will also cut down on noise. I will probably add some noise insulation inside the vac compartment as well. This will be a huge improvement over the vac being outside the cabinet. (Maybe I could insulate the router compartment too?) I may not even need earplugs!
I wired a switch that would simultaneously activate the router and the vac. This gives each there own plug in there own compartment, leaving the router compartment sealed airtight. Their is also a 15 foot cord which powers that switch box. That cord comes out the left side of the cabinet. Notice the yellow cord end in the vac compartment (below) and the black cord end for the router:
The switch is a rocker/paddle style. This is so I can later add a large safety “Stop” paddle. Notice the router table power cord coming out of the left side:
I spent a couple of hours trying different things and thinking about how to best direct the flow of air/dust toward the dust collection chute. I wasn’t sure where to put it either. Should it be directly below the router? Maybe over to one side?
Finally I came up with a plan. I decided to create a sloping shelf with a thin, wide opening below it. Under the shelf would be the chute, which is hooked up to the vac. This way any dust which landed on the shelf would fall right down to the opening and get sucked in. I will make a small vent in the sealed router-compartment door which will allow a cross-flow of air from front to back along the slick melamine surface directing dust right to the chute.
So this is the chute (that connector will be installed underneath the hole to connect to the vac hose):
And this is the sloping shelf (Chute is underneath):
(By the way, those corner brackets above are for securing and leveling the table top)
I hope it works as well as it seems like it should. The idea is that if the router compartment is airtight, and air is being sucked out through one hole by the vac, then suction will be created at the only other opening which is right around the router bit. I may also add a second dust collection port which consists of another hose connector on the back of the router compartment (behind the sloping shelf), and a hose which goes from there to the fence (which has integrated dust collection). This way chips and dust will be sucked away above and below the router bit.
-- Happy woodworking! http://www.blakeweber.us