Router Table by Julie #5: the doors and drawers

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Blog entry by ~Julie~ posted 03-01-2011 08:49 PM 1673 reads 0 times favorited 10 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 4: making the sides and back Part 5 of Router Table by Julie series Part 6: Adding the ON/OFF switch ... finally »

It’s time to add the doors to my router table.

They are made with pine, with 1/4” thick plywood panels, the same as the sides. I run a groove down the middle of the stiles and rails for the panels to fit into, which also allow the tenons of the rails to fit into the stiles:

The door in front of the router will have a plexiglass panel, so the groove needs to be thinner for the plexi than for the tenons. So, I put a narrower groove using the table saw, to hold the plexi and then put wider grooves at the ends of the stiles using a router.

The drawers are fronted with pine, here’s the basic layout:

Every part was given about 5 coats of wipe-on polyurethane. I attached the three doors with piano hinges and put on the casters. The top, which still needs to be framed, is screwed on from underneath with L brackets:

Now… a few questions for you all (I might repeat these in the forums):

How do you store your router bits? I’m not sure if I want to keep them in a drawer in their respective little clear holders that most of them came in, or if I want them inserted into a board with holes drilled into it. If I take them out of their holders then I don’t have their sizes or names on them, plus they aren’t protected from knocks. If I put them into a board with holes they are easier to grab, plus I can hold more that way. Any thoughts?

Do I need air flow in the router compartment? I will be connecting dust collection, so will I need to drill holes for air?

What type of ON/OFF switch do you recommend? (I want one for easy on/off near the router) be continued…

-- ~Julie~

10 comments so far

View MayflowerDescendant's profile


414 posts in 2815 days

#1 posted 03-01-2011 09:08 PM

NICE work! Love well-made, finished, “shop furniture.” Good job.

Re. router bit storage – For now, I have keep all my router bits in their set / box containers for the reasons your describe (easy reference – sizes, profile, router bit number, etc.). Yes, you could mount in a board or some other holder but I (like you?) would (probably) still hold on to the case that they came in. That’s chewing up almost double the storage. I don’t think it’s a big deal to have to open a bit set or two to find the bit you want, plus it keeps them clean and protected.

Re. dust collection / air flow, there have been quite a few discussions / examples shared in the last little while, pros and cons, top versus bottom, etc. There was one in particular that addressed some of this – if I can find it again, I will send you the link.

For on/off switches, I like the ones with a big “paddle” type Stop lever over the button or switch – really easy to reach down and hit. Available most places / catalogues.

Again, great job! I’m sure it will be a real pleasure to use.

-- Glen - Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

View ken_c's profile


323 posts in 3190 days

#2 posted 03-02-2011 03:53 AM

check out the way i did it…

View bigike's profile


4052 posts in 3316 days

#3 posted 03-02-2011 04:11 AM

wow everythings coming along great.

-- Ike, Big Daddies Woodshop,

View fernandoindia's profile


1081 posts in 2972 days

#4 posted 03-02-2011 06:14 AM

Julie, thank for blogging this table out. I do also need to refurbish my table.

On the bits issue, I have your same doubts. Bits stored in boards sitting politely in drawers or shelves, look very tidy and nice. If your´gonna have 10 bits, maybe is OK. But anything twice as large,....mmmmmmmmmmm. I still do keep them in the original boxes. I mean I think I would never recognize a 3/32 bead bit from a 1/4 one. Even they are kept in the boxes, I will still need to check them with a caliper. At some point, I´ll need an assitant: “pass me the 7/32 ogee..”

But the board looks pretty much more tidy than a drawer full of diferent boxes. At some point I thought about gluing the measurements of each bit on a board.

On switch, I endorse Glen´s big paddle switch.

The table is looking great,

Take care

-- Back home. Fernando

View ~Julie~'s profile


607 posts in 3062 days

#5 posted 03-02-2011 03:30 PM

Thanks for the compliments!
Has anyone tried a foot switch? I’m thinking that is a good idea, since both your hands can stay on the pieces you are working on.

Ken: Great table, I asked a question about it at your project link

Fernando: I probably only have about 30 bits right now and I am with you in not being able to recognize sizes of bits if they aren’t in their original containers. I also have thought about marking measurements and/or descriptions on the board that holds all the bits.

-- ~Julie~

View GregD's profile


788 posts in 3164 days

#6 posted 03-02-2011 03:41 PM

I put the Kreg switch on my table. The “off” paddle is easy enough to find with my knee when my hands are busy.

-- Greg D.

View ~Julie~'s profile


607 posts in 3062 days

#7 posted 03-02-2011 04:01 PM

Thanks Greg.
I’m thinking now that I should have bought the switch before I designed the table. But… maybe I will have to revise the drawers and put a switch on the left side somewhere. Hmmmm…

-- ~Julie~

View rivergirl's profile


3201 posts in 2866 days

#8 posted 03-02-2011 04:20 PM

My only thought is YOU DO INCREDIBLE WORK! What a wonderful cabinet for the router. You never cease to impress me with your talents!

-- Homer : "Oh, and how is education supposed to make me feel smarter? Besides, every time I learn something new, it pushes some old stuff out of my brain."

View Rick  Dennington's profile

Rick Dennington

5912 posts in 3222 days

#9 posted 03-02-2011 06:16 PM


You have done a fantastic job on the router’re really showing off your talent….lol. I’m with rivergirl. You do great work on the wood, and your scope is never-ending….keep it up. Here’s my thoughts on the bit holder (s): I built the NYW table a couple of years back, and like him, mounted my bits in pull-out drawers for easy access right at hand. It’s really up to you as to how you want to mount them, or leave them in their boxes or bags. If you do that, then I suggest that you get a router chart or pages out of a catalog that shows your bits, and tack it to the wall close at hand, so you can see the size bits you need for the job you’re doing at the time….Keep up the good work, and “get ‘er done”. Rick.

-- " At my age, happy hour is a crap and a nap".....

View Ampeater's profile


440 posts in 3775 days

#10 posted 03-02-2011 08:35 PM


This is the power switch that I used on my table saw. It works great, especially is you mount it so that you can use your thigh to turn off the power. Grizzly has a lower cost switch but this one is able to handle higher horsepower routers. (and it only costs $13.25)

-- "A goal without a plan is a wish."

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