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My New Router Station

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Project by Mean_Dean posted 1643 days ago 1984 views 8 times favorited 19 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I’ve wanted a good router station for quite awhile now, and so I decided to build one.

It has an MDF cabinet, to match the other cabinets in my shop, and a laminated top, with white Formica on the table-top and fence. It has a Woodpecker’s V2 router lift as well.

I got the plans for the cabinet out of Wood Magazine #192 (Sept. ‘09), and the plans for the fence system out of Wood’s “Best Ever Router Tricks and Jigs (2008 edition).

This project stretched me a little as a woodworker, learning to laminate Formica, and especially getting the router lift hole and rabbet done correctly. But amazingly, everything worked as it’s supposed to, and the table-top and fence came out exactly as they should.

The cabinet, however, seemed to have a mind of its own. For some reason, the MDF sides decided to curl up on me after I cut the dados in them. The plans called for 3/8” dados, though I’ve always heard that you should cut only 1/3 the thickness of the material, which would be 1/4”. Whatever the case, I had to fight with those sides the entire way through the cabinet construction process.

All-in-all, though, things went pretty well, and I’m the proud owner of a router station!

-- Dean





19 comments so far

View Dusty56's profile

Dusty56

11644 posts in 2313 days


#1 posted 1643 days ago

Very nicely done : )

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

11277 posts in 1730 days


#2 posted 1643 days ago

Very nice. I know what you mean about wanting a good router table. I did the same thing and I love it

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

View Glen Peterson's profile

Glen Peterson

508 posts in 1681 days


#3 posted 1643 days ago

Great Job! I’m sure it will serve you well for many years.

-- Glen

View webwood's profile

webwood

618 posts in 1875 days


#4 posted 1643 days ago

good build dean

-- -erik & christy-

View Sawdust4Blood's profile

Sawdust4Blood

346 posts in 1646 days


#5 posted 1643 days ago

sweet! Congrats

-- Greg, Severn MD

View Beginningwoodworker's profile

Beginningwoodworker

13337 posts in 2298 days


#6 posted 1643 days ago

Nice router table.

-- CJIII Future cabinetmaker

View bigike's profile

bigike

4031 posts in 1913 days


#7 posted 1643 days ago

good work!

-- Ike, Big Daddies Woodshop, http://www.icombadaniels@yahoo.com

View blackcherry's profile

blackcherry

3154 posts in 2448 days


#8 posted 1643 days ago

Great looking station and should produce some nice product as well, looking forward to see….thanks for sharing BC

View Abbott's profile

Abbott

2570 posts in 1928 days


#9 posted 1643 days ago

It looks great. I sure need to do something for mine.

-- Ohh mann...pancakes and boobies...I'll bet that's what Heaven is like! ♣ ♣ ♣ ♣

View JasonWagner's profile

JasonWagner

523 posts in 1804 days


#10 posted 1643 days ago

Great looking router table. At first I thought you added a store-bought table to the cabinet. Weird, I have never had a problem with any MDF (all from HD) warping or changing after I cut it. Was there a humidity issue…I see you’re in a garage? Anyway, looks like something that will last you for quite a long tim.

-- some day I hope to have enough clamps to need a clamp cart!

View Gotwood1962's profile

Gotwood1962

30 posts in 1644 days


#11 posted 1643 days ago

I agree with Jim. I put off building mine for a long time. I put wheels on mine and built a large drawer in the bottom to store all my routers. You will really enjoy having all your cutters and collets close at hand. Good job!

-- Gotwood1962, If sawdust were valuable... I'd be a millionaire

View Rick  Dennington's profile

Rick Dennington

3306 posts in 1819 days


#12 posted 1643 days ago

Greetings Dean: I’m on the other side of this conversation. I wouldn’t of made the cabinet out of MDF, beacuse of the problem you ran into. If it gets wet, or exposed to a lot of humidity, it’ll warp more. The top made out of MDF with laminate on both sides is great, cause it keeps the moisture out. A good grade of plywood, like Baltic birch would have been better, to me. Also… if you have dust collection hooked up to the cabinet, you need a door with holes to pull the dust out of the box and top.
These are just my assessments, and not meant to be critical… I just call it like I see it. Good-looking table, and a good job all around. Hope it serves you well for many years… just put a lot of paint on it…. lol.

-- " I started with nothing, and I've still got most of it left".......

View Greg..the Cajun  Box Sculptor's profile

Greg..the Cajun Box Sculptor

4980 posts in 1933 days


#13 posted 1643 days ago

A good router table makes all the difference in the world. You did a nice job. The woodpecker v2 lift is an excellent choice also.
Have fun!

-- If retiring is having the time to be able to do what you enjoy then I have always been retired.

View Mean_Dean's profile

Mean_Dean

1349 posts in 1772 days


#14 posted 1643 days ago

Jason,

I’ve never had a problem with MDF curling up until this project. When I got the sheets at the store, they were perfectly flat, as MDF usually is. I stored them in my garage for a week or so prior to cutting them, and we did have a fair amount of rain during that time, so maybe higher humidity was a factor. But it rains quite a bit here in Oregon, and I’ve never had that problem before. So, I’m not sure it’s a humidity problem.

The one thing that was different, however, was the depth of the dadoes. Usually I go by the rule of thumb, which is to cut no more that 1/3 of the thickness of the material. So 3/4” MDF would get 1/4” dadoes. The plans for this project called for 3/8” dadoes (which is 1/2 the thickness of the MDF.) And since they were all on one side of the MDF, that could have contributed to the problem also.

This curling problem doesn’t detract from the perfomance of the router table, so I guess it’s not a big deal. But I’m a little bit of a perfectionist, and I don’t like flaws of any sort in my work!

-- Dean

View Mean_Dean's profile

Mean_Dean

1349 posts in 1772 days


#15 posted 1643 days ago

Rick,

I hear you on MDF. But I’ve made all of my other cabinets out of MDF, for several reasons, including that it’s fairly stable. I’ve never had a problem with it curling up on me until this project—and the only thing I did differently is cut the dadoes (as per the instructions) deeper.

Nonetheless, I guess it’s a perfectionist thing with me; but in the future, with MDF, I’m going only 1/3 of the thickness!

-- Dean

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