I’m finally setting up a shop in the east half of our two-car garage. I’ve got some rudimentary tools and even more rudimentary skills and a whole lot of enthusiasm and a very understanding Wife, so I bought a router to add to the 20+ year old fixed base B+D router I have. (I will have to write a review of the Triton 2 1/4 horse router when I’ve put it through its paces).
Working on our dining room table a chair set that a buddy of mine was making for us I asked him about what was important in a router table. He pretty much concurred with the reading I’d been doing about the key features (Flatness, rigidity, smoothness, large enough work area, fencing etc). I’d priced out commercially available ones, and ones that are of a reasonable size start at about $300 and go up (man that Benchdog cast table…). I took this as an opportunity to build something better that what can be purchased ( a common affliction amongst woodworkers I understand :-) so set about reading a whole lot more on design and use of router tables and then decided to make my own. I’ve worked with AutoCAD a fair bit (did my thesis using AutoLISP and a whip and chair to get the software to do what I needed…but that’s a whole ‘nother story) and knew that software design was the way I wanted to go (can’t draw a straight line with a ruler;-) and had heard about Google’s Sketchup (from a Canadian woodworking magazine). Downloaded it, being a typical guy I didn’t read the instructions and just started playing with it….after going back to the tutorials I got up to speed in no time and sketched out what I thought I wanted. I really like the ability to putter around with different joints, angles etc and see what the project will look like (then I found the rendering bit and was really happy with the process). I created a model and have started creating sawdust. The interesting thing I’m finding is that since I had to ‘build it’ in sketchup I have a much better idea of how I am actually going to accomplish this project.
Its late here and Jenn has suggested that 0500 comes really early so I’d better quit blogging. I’ll get more to the point next time.
-- "Checking for square? what madness is this! The cabinet is square because I will it to be so!" Jeremy Greiner LJ Topic#20953 2011 Feb 2