Getting more from my router #2: Where do I begin

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Blog entry by TemplateTom posted 12-18-2009 10:41 AM 1419 reads 0 times favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 1: It has been quite some time since I developed these new routing techniques Part 2 of Getting more from my router series Part 3: Routing with Tom O'Donnell »

First the material I have posted on You Tube was a series of videos I had prepared before going to the wood show, to show others what really can be achieved with the router with the aid of the guides. I suppose what really has to be explained is ‘Why I use Template Guides’.

Template guides will introduce greater safety awareness with the use of the router. It will also introduce projects that you may consider not suitable of producing with the router. It will also a add a greater interest in what the router is capable of doing; adding greater enjoyment producing Jigs and Templates. I would have over 100 jigs I have constructed over the years from making Dining room chairs to inserting say ‘Soss’ hinges just to mention a couple.

When we think of what we want to achieve we must consider SAFETY at all times we hear about many accidents with the router when it is used in the Router Table and very little when used in the Plunge Mode.

I need some help here from members re: how would I do ?................ I could put up a number of projects that would not be of interest to members but was to me as I required to produce the article. If you feel you could fill in the blank please do. I also need some advice on how to submit photographs from my computer.

If I were to start with a simple project Rectangular Picture Frame to introduce the technique would that do? This will involve setting up a piece of solid timber and routing the internal opening with a rebate for the glass and a moulding on the internal edge. Then I would like to introduce you to my method of routing the external edging without placing the router in the router table


-- Getting more from my router with the aid of Template Guides Selection of Projects listed on You -Tube "Routing with Tom O'Donnell"

7 comments so far

View degoose's profile


7245 posts in 3555 days

#1 posted 12-18-2009 11:08 AM

Hey Tom… check out this tutorial regards embedding pics in your comments

-- Don't drink and use power tools @

View PG_Zac's profile


368 posts in 3589 days

#2 posted 12-18-2009 12:34 PM

I’ve watched probably all of your YouTube videos, and I think any of your simpler projects listed there would be good as your intro here. The picture frame, the dining chair legs etc.

What I’m extremely interested in studying from you is the process of designing and making the templates to suit your envisaged final projects. I’m sure this will be presented later in the more advanced sections of this blog series, but for now, I’m still fascinated by your approach.

Please keep posting. Thanks.

-- I may be schizophrenic, but at least I have each other.

View ratchet's profile


1391 posts in 3987 days

#3 posted 12-18-2009 03:32 PM

Tom; Yes, I agree the picture frame project would be a good starting point. We look forward to your instructional blogs.

View KAZman's profile


15 posts in 3382 days

#4 posted 12-18-2009 03:42 PM

That’s my number one woodworking goal right now is to expand my limited skills with a router. I have a table mounted version and JUST asked Santa for a plunge/fixed set. I’m ready to learn the RIGHT way the first time!!! The picture frame, to me, sounds like it incorporates a great number of “new” cuts for a rookie like me.

-- KAZman, Hot Springs Village, Arkansas

View cabinetmaster's profile


10874 posts in 3759 days

#5 posted 12-18-2009 03:42 PM

Just do what you do best. There are a lot of beginners here all the way through us pro’s. But I would bet the beginners outweigh the pro’s by 50 to 1 or maybe more. I know that I learn more everyday on this site as well. So as I said before. “Do what you do best”.

-- Jerry--A man can never have enough tools or clamps

View stefang's profile


16131 posts in 3535 days

#6 posted 12-18-2009 05:06 PM

Hey Tom. I have read quite a few router books which show everything you can do with a router including milking the cow. I am more interested in using the router when it is the best choice for the task at hand. This might be in conflict with those who don’t have a wide range of tools and have to use their routers even when it might not be the most efficient tool for the job. Of course, I don’t expect you to tailor your tutorials to my personal needs, but I just wanted to illustrate one of the issues that comes with learning how to use routers. I agree with the others that you should use your own judgment about what to show us, as you will know better than us what is most useful. I do appreciate your generosity in taking your time to teach these skills and I’ll be following with closely in the hope of learning how to get more out of my router(s).

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View lilredweldingrod's profile


2496 posts in 3307 days

#7 posted 12-18-2009 11:41 PM

I was looking at routers from Hitachi and Makita. The plunge routers with variable speed come in 3 1/4hp & 2 1/4hp. Which would you recomend? The 3 1/4 Or 2 1/4?

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