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Router Table Miter Slot Track or T-track?

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Forum topic by steliart posted 05-20-2017 03:45 PM 2204 views 0 times favorited 30 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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steliart

2574 posts in 2525 days


05-20-2017 03:45 PM

Topic tags/keywords: router table miter slot track t-track tip question jig trick

Router Table Miter Slot Track or T-track?
Until now I had no need for a track on my router table.
Now I am thinking of installing one, but I have 2 questions for those with more experience on the matter.

1) Do I install a miter slot track or a t-track (on your opinion)?
2) What is the optimum distance (on your opinion) of the track from the router bit?

Thank you
Stelios AKA Steliart

-- Stelios L.A. Stavrinides: - I am not so rich to buy cheap tools, but... necessity is the mother of inventions


30 replies so far

View Loren's profile (online now)

Loren

9627 posts in 3484 days


#1 posted 05-20-2017 04:01 PM

The problem with using a miter gauge
on a router table is it traps you into having
to have the fence perfectly parallel to the
miter slot. For a lot of applications a
simple wood back-up block run against
fence works as well as a miter gauge
and fence setup is a lot less fussy.

If using t-track, I would recommend getting
your featherboards first and then positioning
the track accordingly.

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steliart

2574 posts in 2525 days


#2 posted 05-20-2017 04:12 PM



The problem with using a miter gauge
on a router table is it traps you into having
to have the fence perfectly parallel to the
miter slot. For a lot of applications a
simple wood back-up block run against
fence works as well as a miter gauge
and fence setup is a lot less fussy.

If using t-track, I would recommend getting
your featherboards first and then positioning
the track accordingly.

- Loren


Thank you Loren :D !!!
My router fence is attached on my table saw fence so parallel is not an issue in my case, also my featherboards are adjustable so they can reach easily. So the Q remains which is more useful as I am also thinking of using a sled on it.

-- Stelios L.A. Stavrinides: - I am not so rich to buy cheap tools, but... necessity is the mother of inventions

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Carloz

973 posts in 428 days


#3 posted 05-20-2017 04:13 PM



The problem with using a miter gauge
on a router table is it traps you into having
to have the fence perfectly parallel to the
miter slot.
- Loren

Why would you use a miter gauge together with the fence ?^^^

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steliart

2574 posts in 2525 days


#4 posted 05-20-2017 04:16 PM



Why would you use a miter gauge together with the fence ?^^^

- Carloz


Your question is not clear my friend… I’m not using a miter gauge !!!

-- Stelios L.A. Stavrinides: - I am not so rich to buy cheap tools, but... necessity is the mother of inventions

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Carloz

973 posts in 428 days


#5 posted 05-20-2017 04:16 PM

Take your feather board and place it so it would touch the router bit. Now move the featherboard slides as far as possible. That should be the distance of the slot from the bit. A T-track tramps a track as former does everything what the latter does but the opposite is not true. For example you cannot fix jigs in the track .

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steliart

2574 posts in 2525 days


#6 posted 05-20-2017 04:19 PM



Take your feather board and place it so it would touch the router bit. That should be the distance of the slot from the bit. A T-track tramps a track as former does everything what the latter does but the opposite is not true. For example you cannot fix jigs in the track .

- Carloz


OK I see your point Carloz so a t-track would be more useful… thanks !!!

-- Stelios L.A. Stavrinides: - I am not so rich to buy cheap tools, but... necessity is the mother of inventions

View Rich's profile (online now)

Rich

1980 posts in 426 days


#7 posted 05-20-2017 04:23 PM


The problem with using a miter gauge
on a router table is it traps you into having
to have the fence perfectly parallel to the
miter slot.

You must know something I don’t. When would it matter that the fence was parallel to the slot?

-- No matter how much you push the envelope, it'll still be stationery.

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Rich

1980 posts in 426 days


#8 posted 05-20-2017 04:28 PM

Back to the original question, my Bench Dog cast iron table has both, and I use both quite regularly. For my purposes, I can’t see having only one.

Regarding Carloz’s reply, a t-track does not do everything a miter slot can do. Try running a coping sled with a 3/4” miter bar through one and let me know how it goes.

-- No matter how much you push the envelope, it'll still be stationery.

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steliart

2574 posts in 2525 days


#9 posted 05-20-2017 04:37 PM



Back to the original question, my Bench Dog cast iron table has both, and I use both quite regularly. For my purposes, I can t see having only one.

Regarding Carloz s reply, a t-track does not do everything a miter slot can do. Try running a coping sled with a 3/4” miter bar through one and let me know how it goes.

- RichTaylor


Thank you Rich for you recommendation… one Q though… wont be possible to slide a sled over a t-track?... many old table saws I’ve seen have only r-tracks instead of a miter track.
I am asking because I do want to make a finger joint sled to run on my router table as my Euro type table saw arbor does not permit a dado blade !

-- Stelios L.A. Stavrinides: - I am not so rich to buy cheap tools, but... necessity is the mother of inventions

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GrandpaLen

1648 posts in 2109 days


#10 posted 05-20-2017 05:05 PM

This is what I used when I built my Table, although it is a combination or dual track with both miter track and t-track, I have seldom used the miter track.
If you already have feather boards that work in your table saw’s miter slot then this will accommodate them.

http://www.rockler.com/bench-dogreg-dual-track-36

Best Regards. – Len
Work Safely and Have Fun.

-- Mother Nature should be proud of what you've done with her tree. - Len ...just north of a stone's throw from the oHIo, river that is, in So. Indiana.

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steliart

2574 posts in 2525 days


#11 posted 05-20-2017 05:11 PM



This is what I used when I built my Table, although it is a combination or dual track with both miter track and t-track, I have seldom used the miter track.
If you already have feather boards that work in your table saw s miter slot then this will accommodate them.

http://www.rockler.com/bench-dogreg-dual-track-36

Best Regards. – Len
Work Safely and Have Fun.

- GrandpaLen


Thank you Len that is an option !!! though we dont have them here and have to be imported, but it is the best solution I know

-- Stelios L.A. Stavrinides: - I am not so rich to buy cheap tools, but... necessity is the mother of inventions

View Rich's profile (online now)

Rich

1980 posts in 426 days


#12 posted 05-20-2017 05:13 PM

Just to be sure we are speaking the same language, a miter slot is ~3/4” wide and accepts jigs with a standard miter bar. A t-track is narrower, and accepts t-track accessories that include 1/4” x 20 hex head bolts with knobs, and oval head bolts. Actually most miter slots have a “T” shape to them so you can use miter bars that lock in the slot. That helps to muddle the clarity of the discussion.

My point was that you can’t run a jig with a miter bar in a regular t-track because the track is too narrow. For example, my coping sled and my Incra I-Box finger joint jig both have 3/4” miter bars.

For illustration, the t-track is on the left and the miter slot is on the right. Like I said, they both have a “T” configuration, but they are not the same thing.

Edit: For the record, if I had to choose only one, I’d pick the miter slot hands-down. The t-track is great for some accessories, but the miter slot is essential for the jigs I use regularly. There are also split-bar pieces that go in the miter slot and expand to lock in when you tighten down the knob. It’s not as secure as the t-track though.

-- No matter how much you push the envelope, it'll still be stationery.

View Rich's profile (online now)

Rich

1980 posts in 426 days


#13 posted 05-20-2017 05:27 PM


I have seldom used the miter track.

This is a perfect example of how these things are personal, and whatever works for you is the right choice. Len doesn’t use his miter slot much, I use mine often.

There is no correct choice, it’s what will suit your needs.

-- No matter how much you push the envelope, it'll still be stationery.

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steliart

2574 posts in 2525 days


#14 posted 05-20-2017 05:28 PM



Just to be sure we are speaking the same language, a miter slot is ~3/4” wide and accepts jigs with a standard miter bar. A t-track is narrower, and accepts t-track accessories that include 1/4” x 20 hex head bolts with knobs, and oval head bolts. Actually most miter slots have a “T” shape to them so you can use miter bars that lock in the slot. That helps to muddle the clarity of the discussion.

My point was that you can t run a jig with a miter bar in a regular t-track because the track is too narrow. For example, my coping sled and my Incra I-Box finger joint jig both have 3/4” miter bars.

For illustration, the t-track is on the left and the miter slot is on the right. Like I said, they both have a “T” configuration, but they are not the same thing.

- RichTaylor


ok I see what you mean Rich :D
I was referring to the one Vs the other as in the photos… Thank you !!! :) :) :)

-- Stelios L.A. Stavrinides: - I am not so rich to buy cheap tools, but... necessity is the mother of inventions

View Nubsnstubs's profile

Nubsnstubs

1207 posts in 1567 days


#15 posted 05-20-2017 06:27 PM

I have a question regarding a sled on a router table. Why would anyone want to have to short short chuck a router bit in order to compensate for the thickness of a sled bottom?? What is wrong with using a fence and the table surface? It seems like a bit of work that’s not necessary and something else to store in an already cramped shop. ....... Jerry (in Tucson)

-- Jerry (in Tucson) www.woodturnerstools.com

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