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My Finished Router Table Project

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Project by Ecocandle posted 04-01-2010 07:51 AM 3317 views 3 times favorited 18 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Hello All,

Several people have suggested that I should put my router table project in the project section. It took me a long time to build it, but the finished project makes me happy. I used several great suggestions from LJs, including, but not limited to, using a piano hinge to connect the table to the legs. I didn’t even know what a piano hinge was, as my piano is electric and hingless.

There have also been a few people who were curious about how the dust collection works. I plan on blogging about it tomorrow, with pictures, but I will describe it here too, as I am sure many of you don’t read my blog.

The fence is two pieces of 4/4 wood, one of hard maple and one of oak, which sandwich around two pieces of 6/4 hard maple. This creates the gap in the center. The wood fence is then connected to a couple of Rockler multi tracks. Once I had the fence figured out I started putting the little grey cells to work trying to come up with a way to connect my rather weak little shop vac to the fence.

I wanted to create a piece that could be slid into the gap, from the top, and be interchanged with another vac connector, should I ever get the Festool shop vac I have my eye on. So requirement one was to make it a connectable piece.

I did this by taking a piece of rectangular hard maple and chiseling out a shallow mortise the same size as the gap. I then drilled a 1 inch hole in the center of the wood, all the way through. Into this mortise I glued two triangular pieces. The triangle was a right angle and close to a 3:4:5 in ratio, just to give you a mental picture. I glued them with the 3 unit side into the mortise, so the diagonal of both triangles focused upwards. My theory is that I would be reducing the area in the gap and thus improve sucking force.

Once the two triangular pieces dried, I tried out the fit. I should mention that the triangular pieces were cut from the same 6/4 wood that made up the pieces forming the gap, so the fit was perfect. The scraps were actually left over from when I built Teri and Tracy, the saw horses, for those who follow the blog. But I digress.

Now that I had the connector portion figured out, I needed to be able to connect the hose. I didn’t want the hose to go straight down, as that would look dumb. I wanted it to enter at 90 degrees from the back of the fence. My first idea was to create a box, which I did, with hand cut dovetails. My dovetails, which were only my 4th and 5th attempts, were ok, but when I placed the box in position, I realized that it just didn’t look sexy enough for my router table fence.

So I decided to get out my french curve and design a more pleasing shape. I came up with the curve and then rough cut the 4 pieces with my jigsaw, Marey. Marey did a really nice job, but the pieces needed to be sanded until they looked like one. I did this with my 3” belt sander, 50 grit belt, and when I got the shape I wanted, ran through the 80 and 120 grits as well. All 4 pieces were clamped into my vice for the sanding.

The next step was to drill a 1 1/4 inch hole in the center of three of the pieces. The 4th piece I cut a light bulb shaped mortise in the fourth piece, the one that faces the front. The idea is that the hose fits snugly into the first three, and the gap in the 4th allows the dust to be sucked up.

Once I got the 4 pieces shaped and the opening created I glued it up. It turned out pretty good, so I then glued the curved connector piece to the other piece with the triangles and it was done. I immediately threw some dust under the opening and sure enough, it sucked it up.

So that is how I built the connector.

Thanks for all the help in figuring out how to build this table. I learned a bunch.

Brian
extremelyaverage.com

-- Brian Meeks, http://extremelyaverage.com





18 comments so far

View Abbott's profile

Abbott

2570 posts in 3387 days


#1 posted 04-01-2010 07:58 AM

It sure looks like a good solid tool! Nice clean lines to.

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

View Ecocandle's profile

Ecocandle

1013 posts in 3149 days


#2 posted 04-01-2010 07:59 AM

Abbott,

Thanks. I am happy with the lines as well. Definitely a great learning experience.

Ecocandle

-- Brian Meeks, http://extremelyaverage.com

View Abbott's profile

Abbott

2570 posts in 3387 days


#3 posted 04-01-2010 08:10 AM

My pleasure, that top looks professional.

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

View Salty's profile

Salty

73 posts in 3130 days


#4 posted 04-01-2010 08:12 AM

Very nice table. The piano hinge is a great idea.

View Ecocandle's profile

Ecocandle

1013 posts in 3149 days


#5 posted 04-01-2010 08:15 AM

It was a great suggestion. I wouldn’t have thought of it myself, and I am confident that regular hinges would not have worked as well. The top is very heavy, but lifts up incredibly smoothly.

-- Brian Meeks, http://extremelyaverage.com

View bigbuddha's profile

bigbuddha

192 posts in 3303 days


#6 posted 04-01-2010 09:01 AM

great looking router table!! I love the curve on the top of the fence!

-- helen

View Diamondback's profile

Diamondback

88 posts in 3223 days


#7 posted 04-01-2010 02:04 PM

Looks very nice and functional. Good picture quality as well. Could you put in one or two more pictures from the top of the table? Looks like something I would like to copy.

I just took a look at your blog. Very entertaining. I shall continue to follow you down woodworking trail.

Thanks!

-- Oshkosh, Wisconsin

View patron's profile

patron

13623 posts in 3424 days


#8 posted 04-01-2010 02:11 PM

well done , brian .

a very nice build ,
years of pleasure i’m sure .

you have learned many good
things here that will help
you in the use of this tool ,
and in ongoing projects .

thanks for sharing ,
enjoy !

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View SPalm's profile

SPalm

5321 posts in 3965 days


#9 posted 04-01-2010 02:14 PM

Brian, that looks great. Nice little artistic touch on the dust collector.

I really like it, I am jealous. I have never built a router table for myself. I always have taken the easy way out and used the extension table of my tablesaw. I don’t even have a router plate. You have inspired me.

Thanks for posting,
Steve

-- -- I'm no rocket surgeon

View webwood's profile

webwood

626 posts in 3333 days


#10 posted 04-01-2010 05:17 PM

came out great brian – a very useful tool indeed

-- -erik & christy-

View David Craig's profile

David Craig

2137 posts in 3192 days


#11 posted 04-01-2010 06:28 PM

Nice job Brian! I am accumulating materials for my own build. Won’t be as nice as yours ;) but hopefully will be functional. I like the piano hinge for the router attachment. Dust collection looks brilliant.

David

-- There is little that is simple when it comes to making a simple box.

View Ecocandle's profile

Ecocandle

1013 posts in 3149 days


#12 posted 04-01-2010 06:33 PM

David,

I am not sure, and I couldn’t find the comment, but I seem to remember that the piano hinge idea was from you? Is that correct. It did work out great and is so solid that it was surprising when I first lifted it.

You have much more skill at woodworking than I do, I am sure yours will be fantastic. I can’t wait to see it.

Brian

-- Brian Meeks, http://extremelyaverage.com

View lew's profile

lew

12209 posts in 3838 days


#13 posted 04-01-2010 07:26 PM

I like the open construction and the placement of the power switch. Nice Job!

Lew

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

View OutPutter's profile

OutPutter

1199 posts in 4073 days


#14 posted 04-01-2010 07:44 PM

Teri and Tracy are going to be jealous of Mr TP if you don’t watch out. And, let’s not forget the workbench without which they would all be nothing.

-- Jim

View Ecocandle's profile

Ecocandle

1013 posts in 3149 days


#15 posted 04-01-2010 07:53 PM

Outputter,

You make a very good point. Teri and Tracy were very helpful, they patiently held many of the parts for this project, while it was underway, and without the workbench, it would have been a much more difficult task.

Brian

-- Brian Meeks, http://extremelyaverage.com

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