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Router Table Fence #1: It's not pretty but...

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Blog entry by Lee A. Jesberger posted 07-01-2008 03:13 PM 7119 reads 2 times favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch
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About twenty some years ago I bought a professional door making router bit set made by Freud. Included in the set, which I still own and use even after making hundreds of doors with it, was plans for a router fence.

I bought the set for the first set of raised panel doors I made. The doors were for another contractor, and he needed them pretty quickly.

After seeing the plans I realized I could make good use of a fence like that. It had the same adjustments as a shaper fence. The left and right fences could be moved in and out as well as be adjusted sideways to allow for different width bits. The fence parts were fitted to the base using dados and provided very strong and dependable settings.

I also didn’t have a router table to install it on.

So I bought a counter blank made from glued up pine, about 1 1/8” thick, and was pre laminated with Formica.

I built a quick and dirty Router table on the side walk in front of the job, (no shop in those days, and no real professional woodworking experiences).

I could see the contractor was a bit nervous after seeing me build this outside the project, but he knew my work from some construction projects, so he approached it with the idea I could probably do it.

This quick and dirty set up ended up being used for about twenty years. And with the original 3 H.P. Hitachi router it was fitted with, it did a considerable amount of work in addition to the doors.

It worked very well except the dust it created made it impractical for indoor use. So I designed a dust collection box consisting of three parts, which fit around the independent fences. Since some router bits remove wood from the entire thickness of an edge, the independent fences are necessary. It also meant the dust collection parts had to work independently of each other had to be independent of the fence itself.

The resulting dust collection chamber worked extremely well, removing about 90% of the airborne dust.


































-- by Lee A. Jesberger http://www.prowoodworkingtips.com http://www.ezee-feed.com



12 comments so far

View lew's profile

lew

10128 posts in 2477 days


#1 posted 07-01-2008 05:17 PM

Great adaptation!

Lew

-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

View bryano's profile

bryano

546 posts in 2655 days


#2 posted 07-01-2008 06:01 PM

Great pics of the fence Lee. I hope to be building one of these myself one day.

-- bryano

View Lee A. Jesberger's profile

Lee A. Jesberger

6686 posts in 2701 days


#3 posted 07-01-2008 07:08 PM

Thanks guys;

If I had to go back to using a router table instead of a shape, this would definitely be the fence I would use.

Lee

-- by Lee A. Jesberger http://www.prowoodworkingtips.com http://www.ezee-feed.com

View sIKE's profile

sIKE

1271 posts in 2476 days


#4 posted 07-01-2008 07:25 PM

I have a big butcher block slab that I am considering for use as a router table top myself. I got it from the clearance section of Ikea and it is slightly cupped. I have been trying to decide if I can flatten by running two boards across front to back to pull the cup down flat.

-- //FC - Round Rock, TX - "Experience is what you get just after you need it"

View Lee A. Jesberger's profile

Lee A. Jesberger

6686 posts in 2701 days


#5 posted 07-02-2008 01:00 AM

Hi Steve;

I read this an hour and a half ago and got side tracked reading your blog on the miter saw station.

Depending on how bad the cup is, I’m sure you can do something with it.

I assume it’s pre finished, so adding some water to the cup, wouldn’t help.

Another option is to mount it to the cabinet in such a way as to be able to tighten up the screws gradually and pull the cup down, (assuming that’s the bottom side).

Adding cleats, as you mentioned, to the bottom can also work if they’re substantial enough.

The final solution is to plane the top flat again. The advantage to this is it is your not fighting the board.

It won’t have a tendency to return to the warped shape.

Hope this helps.

Lee

-- by Lee A. Jesberger http://www.prowoodworkingtips.com http://www.ezee-feed.com

View sIKE's profile

sIKE

1271 posts in 2476 days


#6 posted 07-02-2008 05:16 AM

I was thinking about using some 8/4 maple strips jointed and planned flat and be about 2” x 2” with tapers front and back. These strips would be placed so they land outside of the router cabinet. I am thinking that they would be strong enough to pull them down.

Planning would mean at least one rip if not two to get it though the planner and I’d rather not. If it is that bad I will re-purpose it on another project.

The water idea is not bad, but I would have to strip it and I am unsure of what type of glue that was used.

-- //FC - Round Rock, TX - "Experience is what you get just after you need it"

View Lee A. Jesberger's profile

Lee A. Jesberger

6686 posts in 2701 days


#7 posted 07-02-2008 06:20 AM

Hi Steve;

The cleats idea should work.

Another way of planning the wood is a sled set on rails for you router.

Another idea is relief cuts, part way through the bottom of the piece, running with the cup.This to would relieve the tension within the board.

Any number of ways will work just fine.

Lee

-- by Lee A. Jesberger http://www.prowoodworkingtips.com http://www.ezee-feed.com

View Grumpy's profile

Grumpy

19586 posts in 2573 days


#8 posted 07-02-2008 10:24 AM

Lee looks like a great addition. Is there any chance of posting larger photos?.

-- Grumpy - "Always look on the bright side of life"- Monty Python

View Taigert's profile

Taigert

593 posts in 2562 days


#9 posted 07-02-2008 12:25 PM

Lee,
From what I can see it looks like the kind of fence I need for the table I’ll be building in about a month from now. I have been throwing different designs around to find what I have been looking for.
Some bigger pic;s would sure be nice, if it wouldn’t be to hard. I still have to get a digital camera so I can post some stuff. So I have no idea what it takes to post them large or small??
Very well built to last for twenty years in a pro shop. Not to shabby for something thrown together on site.

-- Taigert - Milan, IN

View Lee A. Jesberger's profile

Lee A. Jesberger

6686 posts in 2701 days


#10 posted 07-02-2008 02:16 PM

HI Guys;

I assume you are clicking om the pictures, and these too aren’t big enough?

Let me know, and I see what I can do.

Thanks for the comments.

Lee

-- by Lee A. Jesberger http://www.prowoodworkingtips.com http://www.ezee-feed.com

View Grumpy's profile

Grumpy

19586 posts in 2573 days


#11 posted 07-03-2008 12:49 AM

Sorry Lee, my mistake. I was looking at the first photo, it does’nt enlarge.

-- Grumpy - "Always look on the bright side of life"- Monty Python

View Lee A. Jesberger's profile

Lee A. Jesberger

6686 posts in 2701 days


#12 posted 07-03-2008 03:54 AM

Hey Tony;

I was just checking the photos.

They’re all messed up.

I guess I outsmarted myself, AGAIN.

Lee

-- by Lee A. Jesberger http://www.prowoodworkingtips.com http://www.ezee-feed.com

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