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Did I Overthink It?

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Project by Jeff2016 posted 01-15-2016 11:13 PM 1942 views 3 times favorited 13 comments Add to Favorites Watch

That is a sketch of a router planer base that finally put it’s self together in my head. And after today, it sits in prototype on my bench.

I have 3 needs this thing had to meet, and I couldn’t find anything online that met all 3 in one device.

1) I have the worlds most unlevel floor in my shop, and haven’t built a solid dead level bench yet. So the bed had to level itself.

2) I need the ability to plane multiple thicknesses of boards- without hunting for or storing more boards.

3) There had to be a better way to clamp stock down than hot glue, or a circus act of blocks and clamps.

And I am relieved to say it works.

All for legs are bolts and the bed can be leveled perfectly no matter what it sets on.

1/2” threaded rod goes up from there to give me a max height above the bed of 6”- and can be set dead level at any height. (with the router extended out, It can touch the bed)

A couple slots cut in the bed and some bolts I can use blocks to secure firmly to the bed no muss no fuss.

The end result of my test subject put a smile on my face.

The con to this contraption is the time to set it up. I fussed with each bolt until both the bed and the rails were perfectly flat no matter where I set the level.

Now it’s worth out laying out some cash for the aluminum top rails and router sled.

Thanks for taking a look, let me know what you think.

Oh about the work bench, I need this thing to surface the slabs first.

-- Proud owner of an electronics free workshop. Please check your cell phone at the door!





13 comments so far

View indianajoe's profile

indianajoe

55 posts in 1447 days


#1 posted 01-16-2016 01:44 AM

looks good. It may take time to set the rails up though. It wouldn’t have to set dead flat as long as the rails and bed are parallel and its not in a twist in theory. very nice project.

View Bearpaw's profile

Bearpaw

239 posts in 3185 days


#2 posted 01-16-2016 03:10 AM

I built this organ grill for my church to replace a very dirty curtain. It is very large. 94” on the base, 96” on the side and weighs 425#. I made these I – beams from mdf. I attached and leveled one to the shop floor and then leveled the other two in reference to the first. I then had a level platform to build on and the I – beam to attach clamps to.

-- "When we build, let us think we build forever." John Ruskin

View oldnovice's profile (online now)

oldnovice

5729 posts in 2832 days


#3 posted 01-16-2016 07:10 AM

Looks good to me …. I think!

-- "I never met a board I didn't like!"

View jciccare's profile

jciccare

21 posts in 731 days


#4 posted 01-16-2016 01:59 PM

My garage floor probably rivals yours for un-levelness. Even as a workshop newbie, I quickly tired of having to level every tool whenever I moved it. So my first big project was a level floor.

-- Accomplish the great task by a series of small acts. (Tao Te Ching / Lao Tzu)

View Jeff2016's profile

Jeff2016

72 posts in 329 days


#5 posted 01-16-2016 03:06 PM

Thanks for the replies guys. The one obstacle between me and leveling the floor is a landlord. I did him a huge favor by putting up this 16×20 a few years ago, however he would not allow any flat work first. He muttered something about utility lines that one day might need attention and they run under that corner of the house.
Nothing I say has changed his mind about any type of floor.
So my choices are deal with it, or move. I have a heck of a sweet deal here, so moving right now is not an option.
I built it off the side of the house post and beam. Not what I wanted for sure, but better than nothing.

Inadianjoe- The rails are a bit time consuming but I like the precision!

Bearpaw- nice build!

jciccare- I read your blog. I can relate. The one tool I can’t seem to come up with is a Landlord mind changer! So for now I make due and count down the time until our 10 acres farther north is ready for us to call home.

-- Proud owner of an electronics free workshop. Please check your cell phone at the door!

View kimosawboy's profile

kimosawboy

164 posts in 2435 days


#6 posted 01-16-2016 04:24 PM

I dont think ‘Did I Overthink It?’ should be the question , rather ‘Did I think about it enough!’
How level your floor is has nothing to do with getting flat stock from a router sled.
Cut a 2’x4’ chunk of 3/4” ply, wack a 10’-2”x4” in half and screw it on edge to the long sides of the ply(leaving 6” extra at each end), Secure your prospective wood to the ply, with shims if you want, Use the gantry that you have and you are off to the races!
You can secure the plywood (base) to your work table with clamps/screws, whatever floats your boat. If you really want you could even screw it to the wall and rout there if you want a work out.
Take a look at other sleds out there, most are very similar…parallel rails is about all it takes.
G Vavra

View Jeff2016's profile

Jeff2016

72 posts in 329 days


#7 posted 01-16-2016 05:49 PM

I have spent many nights looking at sleds all over the net, but none solved all three issues. Your suggestion is correct, except for clamping wood down. With this I get no movement at all, no hot glue to pry off surfaces, and can cinch down any shape.
If I need to change the height for a different thickness, I don’t have to change boards or move the bed which would need to be re-leveled in my current situation.
All the lumber I have to build out my shop is in the form of slabs I cut myself and they need to be surfaced before I can build anything.

Picture this- You have a router, benchtop table saw, a radial arm saw, some scrap wood, a pile of rough cut seasoned slabs and a minimal budget. (I do have other portable tooling, however nothing to square my stock.)

That is where I am starting. Thankfully since I don’t have money, I do have time. It’s my off season till march.
The other key factor- I can level this outside and stay up wind of my router on decent days so I can avoid a shop full of nasty dust

-- Proud owner of an electronics free workshop. Please check your cell phone at the door!

View DanielP's profile

DanielP

489 posts in 1356 days


#8 posted 01-16-2016 07:19 PM

I think maybe to many parts that all need to remain parallel and flat.

-- --- Dan

View Oldtool's profile

Oldtool

2374 posts in 1655 days


#9 posted 01-16-2016 08:01 PM

In my opinion, you may have overthought this a little bit, because your router sled doesn’t have to be level to create a flat board. What you have however, is a highly adjustable sled – which isn’t a bad thing.
It probably would have benefited you to watch this Wood Whisperer video before building your sled:
https://youtu.be/qtkBZHLJyD0

-- "I am a firm believer in the people. If given the truth, they can be depended upon to meet any national crisis. The point is to bring them the real facts." - Abraham Lincoln

View Jeff2016's profile

Jeff2016

72 posts in 329 days


#10 posted 01-16-2016 10:12 PM

DanielP- That was my biggest apprehension with it. That’s why I wanted a version made from scraps first.Once I snugged the nuts tight, nothing moved.

Maybe a bit fussy on set up but proved its worth.

Oldtool- I did see that video. More than once actually. I will be using his method when I get to the top, however I need to shape the lumber to make it first.

-- Proud owner of an electronics free workshop. Please check your cell phone at the door!

View Bill_Steele's profile

Bill_Steele

118 posts in 1196 days


#11 posted 01-17-2016 07:56 PM

Nice job Jeff. This project reminded me of a project from ShopNotes (Vol 4, Issue 21) that I made years ago.

I’ve also seen jigs similar to yours for leveling large slabs.

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

17170 posts in 2570 days


#12 posted 03-31-2016 02:01 AM

Great job on the router jig. We have been talking about building one of these for the Az. shop to flatten tree slabs when making tables or shelves.

Jim

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

View Jeff2016's profile

Jeff2016

72 posts in 329 days


#13 posted 04-01-2016 11:47 AM



Great job on the router jig. We have been talking about building one of these for the Az. shop to flatten tree slabs when making tables or shelves.

Jim

- Jim Jakosh


Thanks Jim, been using it for a while now, and it is very handy. Not quite long enough to handle an entire slab, but I tend to cut a piece of slab a bit oversized of what I need before I start to mill it and this does the trick.

-- Proud owner of an electronics free workshop. Please check your cell phone at the door!

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