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Forum topic by NewbieInWV posted 03-10-2017 04:13 PM 648 views 0 times favorited 14 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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NewbieInWV

14 posts in 423 days


03-10-2017 04:13 PM

Topic tags/keywords: table saw router table combination

Hello all,

I’m about to stock my new garage/shop with tools. I’m a life-long wood enthusiast, but I don’t want to insult carpenters or woodworkers by calling myself either of those things…yet.

I plan to purchase tools that are beyond my current skill level, but a good match for where I want to be in a few years. I’m fortunate to have the space and $ to create a decent shop. I don’t plan to make this a commercial endeavor, but I do want to fill my house with shop-made cabinets, built-ins, and furniture over the next couple of decades.

I’ve read up on table saws here and elsewhere, and I’ve narrowed my search to my top (3) choices. I’m sure I”ll be happy regardless of which one I choose.

I assume that I can get a router table attachment for any of them. My question is this. Are there any major drawbacks of a combined TS/Router setup? I assume a standalone router would be best, but from a cost/space standpoint is the combo TS/Router a reasonable approach?

Also, if I opt for the combination setup, do I need to purchase direct from the mfr or can I buy through a re-seller like Amazon?

I’m researching all the other necessities (dust collection, jointers, etc.) but this morning’s pondering revolves around the centerpiece tool of the shop.

Mike

-- Mike H, Elkins WV


14 replies so far

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

4756 posts in 2327 days


#1 posted 03-10-2017 04:47 PM

I had my router table in my table saw for several years and found it a very nice solution for those tight on space. The only thing I wasn’t clever enough to solve was dust collection. My saw was on a mobile base that lifted the extension end of the saw. The router almost made it too heavy to be lifted, any addition for DC wold have put it over the top. But I now have a stand alone router table, and i can’t do anything on it that I couldn’t do when it was in the saw. Mine was arranged so I could work from the end of the extension. As for buying one, I don’t know know. I made mine, just replacing the existing table with a more robust (and slightly longer) piece that I cut an opening for the router plate into. Congrats on your impending adventure, I’m sure you will enjoy it!

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

View TungOil's profile

TungOil

741 posts in 329 days


#2 posted 03-10-2017 05:49 PM

Separate machinery is always best but you quickly run out of room following that plan! I find that the router mounted in the saw extension works just fine for my work, which is mostly cabinetry and furniture. The biggest disadvantage is that you can’t leave the router setup if you need to use the TS for a wide cut. For me this is generally not an issue since I’m usually setting the router up to do something very specific anyway and I can drop it below the table then I’m finished.

I built my own extension, replacing the original one on my TS. It took a weekend to put together including the fence. I laminated to top with some leftover Formica I had on hand and added t-track for featherboards to the table and the fence. My fence accepts the Rockler quick disconnect fitting for DC and does a great job as long I’m routing an edge profile. For dados or other trapped cuts I let the chips fall to the floor (which happens to be where I sweep my floor to anyway).

-- The optimist says "the glass is half full". The pessimist says "the glass is half empty". The engineer says "the glass is twice as big as it needs to be"

View Madmark2's profile

Madmark2

371 posts in 422 days


#3 posted 03-10-2017 07:59 PM

I have a high end fence (Incra LS-III) that shares with the router in the R wing of the saw.

Typically you need several routers, table and free hand. Bits are where the $$$ is.

M

View Rick_M's profile

Rick_M

10606 posts in 2214 days


#4 posted 03-11-2017 12:37 AM

Mike, another lesson is keep your shop clean, haha.

-- http://thewoodknack.blogspot.com/

View NewbieInWV's profile

NewbieInWV

14 posts in 423 days


#5 posted 03-11-2017 01:03 AM

Thanks for the posts, all.

TungOil, did you add the Stop/Start switch yourself? Is that something that’s easy to buy and add?

-- Mike H, Elkins WV

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TungOil

741 posts in 329 days


#6 posted 03-11-2017 01:13 AM

The power switch came from MLCS along with the speed control. Both were easy to add, they plug right in. Although I eventually got sick of the extra wiring and had my electrician tie everything together.

-- The optimist says "the glass is half full". The pessimist says "the glass is half empty". The engineer says "the glass is twice as big as it needs to be"

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NewbieInWV

14 posts in 423 days


#7 posted 03-11-2017 01:32 AM

Quick follow up.

I understand the benefits of shop-built, but I have a mile-long list of honey-do’s that I need to get started on. So my initial shop projects will be limited to things I can’t easily purchase, like wood storage, mitre saw extensions, etc.

I think I’d like to buy the router table extension rather than build it. That being the case, should I just buy it from Delta, Jet or Grizzly, or should I buy an extension from Bench Dogs or someone like that?

Thanks!

-- Mike H, Elkins WV

View TungOil's profile

TungOil

741 posts in 329 days


#8 posted 03-11-2017 02:23 AM

Sounds like time is critical. I would think that the router table offered by the manufacturer would be the least trouble to install so that might be your best route. You didn’t list Powermatic but I know you can order a PM with the router table already installed (at least it was an option on my PM2000)

-- The optimist says "the glass is half full". The pessimist says "the glass is half empty". The engineer says "the glass is twice as big as it needs to be"

View NewbieInWV's profile

NewbieInWV

14 posts in 423 days


#9 posted 03-11-2017 01:05 PM



Sounds like time is critical. I would think that the router table offered by the manufacturer would be the least trouble to install so that might be your best route. You didn t list Powermatic but I know you can order a PM with the router table already installed (at least it was an option on my PM2000)

- TungOil

The PM1000 is on my list. Today I’m looking at distributors. Where I live there are few options to actually go put my hands on these things.

-- Mike H, Elkins WV

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

116560 posts in 3411 days


#10 posted 03-11-2017 02:27 PM

I find having a free standing router table and one in my table saw extension very helpful particularly with joinery like cope and stick, you then have a router set up for both operations one for the stick and one for the cope without having to keep changing your set up.

-- http://artisticwoodstudio.com Custom furniture

View Steve's profile

Steve

57 posts in 292 days


#11 posted 03-11-2017 02:34 PM

I have the PM1000 with a Bench Dog table extension on the right side. I built a cabinet to put the entire assembly on one mobile platform with wheels and drawers for my bits and other tools. It includes dut collection and works GREAT. If I had all to do over I would exactly the same thing.

I did get the lift and extension from Amazon along with the switch.

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NewbieInWV

14 posts in 423 days


#12 posted 03-11-2017 05:09 PM


I have the PM1000 with a Bench Dog table extension on the right side. I built a cabinet to put the entire assembly on one mobile platform with wheels and drawers for my bits and other tools. It includes dut collection and works GREAT. If I had all to do over I would exactly the same thing.

Steve, do you have plans for your design, or did you video tape your build? That’s very cool!

-- Mike H, Elkins WV

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Steve

57 posts in 292 days


#13 posted 03-11-2017 05:34 PM

Hi Mike,

Actually I just winged it! But I would be glad to send you more detailed pics, with measurements. I had an idea in my head and it just kind of evolved as I went. I knew I wanted to make a base Big enough to hold everything, and I wanted to raise the saw up a couple of inches. I’m 6’5” and I hate having to slightly stoop when I work.

I had built the table behind first and then stuck a two by 6 and a piece of 3/4 Oak under it to get it up even higher till I found what I liked.

The thing I did not plan on, but worked out so well was putting a second small table on wheels behind the first table. This is where I use my track saw to cut sheet goods in two when needed. The track saw lives under the big table and stays plugged in, and when I pull it out to use it the vacuum attachment for my table saw is right there for the track saw. I even built a slot under my cabinets to store the track so its handy right there where I use it.

View Steve's profile

Steve

57 posts in 292 days


#14 posted 03-11-2017 05:42 PM

Two more pics of the router fence on the saw. I had an older JoinTech router fence and I made a base that has lips on the front and back and one that sits in the Miter track on the saw. then I just mounted the fence on that.

I use this when I need the fence close to or over the bit, especially when I want to use the vacuum on the fence. If the fence needs to be far away from the bit I just use the table saw fence.

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