My Router Journey #1: My first cut ever!

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Blog entry by Choupinette posted 388 days ago 814 reads 0 times favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch
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My first cut ever with a router!

Took me 3 hours to figure out how to put everything together and do all the adjustments, practice the cut with the tool powered off, overcome the heebie-jeebies, then … do it! I’m very pleased with the result (template not nicked, clean cut, no wood burn). Woo-hoo!

I used a straight flush bit of 1 inch length and enclosed ball bearings. The “template” was a small oak board, and the cut piece was a thick scrap pine board.

Now, as you can see, there are little vertical ridges in the cut. That tells me that the speed of the cut was not uniform, and that maybe the edge of the “template” was not as smooth as it should have been. Next time I’ll be sure to sand the edge of the template.

I prepared as best I knew, with the diagram of the tool hung up for easy reference while I was putting everything together, and of course I had all my safety equipment on (face shield, goggles). I did not use the ear muffs because I was doing only one cut, plus I wanted to experience how the tool sounded, and I did not use the breathing mask either. Next time.

My next step: setup my routing table with the router, and especially, create some templates.

Ciao for now!

-- Christine G., Northern California

7 comments so far

View Gary's profile (online now)


7103 posts in 2064 days

#1 posted 388 days ago

They are fun to use and can turn out some great results. Just takes practice. Congrats

-- Gary, DeKalb Texas only 4 miles from the mill

View RobynHoodridge's profile


126 posts in 961 days

#2 posted 388 days ago

The router is an amazing tool. You’ll probably never run out of things to learn about it. Enjoy the wonderful journey. And thanks for sharing.

-- Never is longer than forever.

View Grumpymike's profile


1066 posts in 947 days

#3 posted 388 days ago

Oh my, you are on your way to a new world … Study the safety tips and respect the tool and you will do well.
When I got my first router I dropped in a ogee bit and started along the edge of a board … The bit flew out and zinged about the shop at rocket speed. Left some marks but hurt nothing (whew!).
I learned not to allow the bit to bottom out in the collet. I use a space ball in the collet, and a lot of guys put an “O” ring on the bit shaft.
Practice, practice is the word of the day.

-- Grumpy old guy, and lookin' good Doin' it. ... Surprise Az.

View Sandra's profile


4277 posts in 707 days

#4 posted 388 days ago

I enjoyed this post immensely. I do the same thing with a new tool. Lots of reading, double checking, a moderate amount of nervous sweating and then the thrill of seeing how something works. I have a book on ww with the router and find it very helpful. Just make sure you always are sure of your feed direction. For a while, I had it posted on my router table so I wouldn’t mistakenly use the same as I was used to when using the router out of the table.

Have fun! I’m looking forward to seeing your next project.

-- No, I don't want to buy the pink hammer.

View ken_c's profile


262 posts in 1794 days

#5 posted 387 days ago

remember, every cut we make is a practice cut…

View Roger's profile


14373 posts in 1436 days

#6 posted 387 days ago

Routers can do so many different things. You’ll be luvin it.

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe.

View Julian's profile


507 posts in 1322 days

#7 posted 387 days ago

As Roger mentioned; ‘Routers can do so many different things”. There are some great router jigs on this website that will make using the router easier, safer, and more enjoyable. You are started with a pretty good router. The DeWalt is one of the better routers (especially with the plunge base) in my opinion.

-- Julian

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