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A Router for Inlays

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Review by Karson posted 03-01-2008 05:59 AM 4682 views 2 times favorited 14 comments Add to Favorites Watch
A Router for Inlays A Router for Inlays A Router for Inlays Click the pictures to enlarge them

When i was asked to make the frame for mark’s Memorial I wanted to do an inlay. I’d seen a couple of small routers on the web and I’d seen what mark DeCou does for cutting the outlines on his letter carving.

This router came from Steward-MacDonald. They make tools for the construction and repair of string instruments. This is their router being used for an inlay in a guitar.

I bought the router as a kit which contains an air pump and an edge guide. The edge guide is for inlaying on the edge of instruments.

The router was built to use a Dremel as the power source. But, I’d heard that the Dremel is underpowered. The make a hand piece that works with a Foredom power head. I ordered the Modified Foredom head and it’s shown in the second picture. The third picture is the tool in use. I was using a 1/32” router bit, and I found that it works better if you cut the middle of the inlay out first and then work to the edges.

Here are the inlays in place.

It works great and is highly recommended.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Southern Delaware karson_morrison@bigfoot.com †




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Karson

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14 comments so far

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TomK

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#1 posted 03-01-2008 06:10 AM

That looks perfect for delicate inlays, Karson. What is the largest diameter bit it will accept?

-- If you think healthcare is expensive now, wait until it's free! PJ O'Rourke

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Karson

34875 posts in 3052 days


#2 posted 03-01-2008 06:40 AM

The handpiece will only accept 1/8” shank bits. I didn’t see any bits larger than that in 1/8” shank. Foredom has other handpieces that accept up to 1/4” shanks, but not the handpiece for the router base.

This set of bits is 1/32, 1/16, 3/32, and 1/8”

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Southern Delaware karson_morrison@bigfoot.com †

View Douglas Bordner's profile

Douglas Bordner

3964 posts in 2715 days


#3 posted 03-01-2008 06:47 AM

I have the Dremel tool version of this fine little set-up. Although it isn’t a plunger, it is precise and well made. I bought the edge guide as well, and there is an additional fixture designed to cut the channel for the binding or purfling of guitar and violin bodies. Cool tool.

-- "Bordnerizing" perfectly good lumber for over a decade.

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Karson

34875 posts in 3052 days


#4 posted 03-01-2008 07:25 AM

Your right it’s not a true plunge other thasn you turn the screw and it will go up and down.. I guess you can control the depth by 1000 of an inch. I don’t know what the thread pitch is but its fine.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Southern Delaware karson_morrison@bigfoot.com †

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Karson

34875 posts in 3052 days


#5 posted 03-01-2008 07:30 AM

Tom. I see that Stew-mac also has a 1/8” shank and 5/32 bit for cutting bandings on guitars.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Southern Delaware karson_morrison@bigfoot.com †

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TomK

504 posts in 2526 days


#6 posted 03-01-2008 07:45 AM

Thanks, I just saw that on their site too. I want to build a Stratocaster style electric for my daughter, and wanted something that had finer control than I can get with my palm router.

-- If you think healthcare is expensive now, wait until it's free! PJ O'Rourke

View Grumpy's profile

Grumpy

19453 posts in 2503 days


#7 posted 03-01-2008 08:02 AM

I like it Karson, great looking tool.

-- Grumpy - "Always look on the bright side of life"- Monty Python

View rikkor's profile

rikkor

11295 posts in 2526 days


#8 posted 03-01-2008 12:17 PM

I have one I’ve used for guitar inlay and purfling. It is a precision tool. More precise than the Dremmel I use it with.

View RickH's profile

RickH

18 posts in 2400 days


#9 posted 03-01-2008 09:42 PM

Nice review – thanks! I have been thinking of getting into inlay work, and your review really helps. Appreciate the details and all the photos.

-- Rick - OC, CA

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Moron

4666 posts in 2545 days


#10 posted 03-01-2008 10:47 PM

thats nice

another for my wish list

-- "Good artists borrow, great artists steal”…..Picasso

View Lee A. Jesberger's profile

Lee A. Jesberger

6648 posts in 2631 days


#11 posted 03-03-2008 09:47 AM

Thanks for the review Karson.

I’ve looked at these several times, but my hands were already full. Sooner or later I’ll order one.

They appear to be high quality.

Lee

-- by Lee A. Jesberger http://www.prowoodworkingtips.com http://www.ezee-feed.com

View tenontim's profile

tenontim

2131 posts in 2396 days


#12 posted 03-06-2008 10:49 PM

Thanks for the review. I’ve been looking at this and the dremmel, and couldn’t make up my mind.

View Toumar's profile

Toumar

3 posts in 1834 days


#13 posted 09-08-2009 12:33 PM

Hi there ! I probably acquire the stewmac router, but I am still wondering what to use as a power source. Could you tell me what you used to make your inlays please ?

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Toumar

3 posts in 1834 days


#14 posted 09-08-2009 04:29 PM

Hey Karson, thank you so much for your kind answer and help :)

Take care,

Toumar

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