Building my first router table, with a question.

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Forum topic by kwblack posted 01-10-2011 01:47 AM 2576 views 1 time favorited 9 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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31 posts in 2293 days

01-10-2011 01:47 AM

Topic tags/keywords: question

I’m building my first router table. I bought a used Ryobi router on Ebay and it needs a home. I’ve gathered all my materials and I am researching router plate inserts. I was going to use the Harbor Freight insert, but it isn’t online anymore and believe me, I searched every possible combination of terms in the search box. So, what would be the next best alternative, considering this is a $30 router in a a table built from all salvaged materials? Don’t see the sense in buying a $70 Kreg insert.

9 replies so far

View PurpLev's profile


8523 posts in 3071 days

#1 posted 01-10-2011 01:59 AM

Consider this – the router plate will last you a life time, and if you ever rebuild another router table, upgrade yours, etc – the plate will move along to the new table.

there is nothing more disappointing then putting all that work on a solid work table (salvaged materials or not is irrelevant) making sure the top is super flat, but then cheapening out on the router plate only to have it bow down with the router making all that work, and the flatness of the top useless.

Is that $40 difference for the plate that crucial?

I am personally using this plate from Incra with the magnetic inserts:

it’s actually running at $40 currently :)

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

View dbhost's profile


5590 posts in 2655 days

#2 posted 01-10-2011 02:07 AM

I don’t know if it fits the Ryobi, but I have been very happy with how the Bench Dog Pro Plate works with my Hitachi…

-- My workshop blog can be found at

View poopiekat's profile


4189 posts in 3157 days

#3 posted 01-10-2011 02:16 AM

I made mine from salvaged 1/4” Lexan polycarbonate I bought at a yard sale. It’s been in use for 15 years. My plate fits a 10” X 9” opening in my homemade router table. I made it smaller than the usual 12” x 12” so it wouldn’t be as prone to sagging. The router and insert are out of the table when not in use.

-- Einstein: "The intuitive mind is a sacred gift, and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift." I'm Poopiekat!!

View Loren's profile


8168 posts in 3071 days

#4 posted 01-10-2011 02:26 AM

I’m not big on the insert plate method. Nor on putting a plunge router
in a table. I just screw the router to the bottom of the table and pull
the motor out to change bits. Pretty old fashioned, I know.

I made a router table once with a plate and a plunger and it was more
hassle than it was worth.

View cutmantom's profile


388 posts in 2458 days

#5 posted 01-10-2011 02:41 AM

I made my plate from a corian scrap, it is about 1/2 inch thick, definitely no sagging

View KayBee's profile


1083 posts in 2669 days

#6 posted 01-10-2011 02:54 AM

I just bolted my plunge router to the table – no plate. Worked great, only reason I’m changing it is because I got a great deal on a lift this summer.

-- Karen - a little bit of stupid goes a long way

View bigike's profile


4048 posts in 2711 days

#7 posted 01-10-2011 03:01 AM

just screw it to the bottom of the table top no need to level anything and make cut outs circle for bigger bits.

-- Ike, Big Daddies Woodshop,

View Orion Woods's profile

Orion Woods

67 posts in 2192 days

#8 posted 01-10-2011 03:13 AM

I would say the Incra above! I have the harbor freight in mine but if I had seen that deal I would have gotten it for $10 more! Looks much nicer then HF one. And I agree that you spend the little extra as that piece will go on to later router tables when you decide you need to upgrade a little. I already am redoing mine after a few months cause I tried to be cheap and cut corners. this time will be different with real T tracks and miter slot and better fence.

Bottom line go for the Incra!

-- Brian

View Dan Lyke's profile

Dan Lyke

1509 posts in 3548 days

#9 posted 01-10-2011 06:59 PM

My first router table used a cheapie Craftsman router and, like Poopiekat, a plate I milled from a piece of acrylic from the odds-and-ends bin at Tap Plastics. I do like that Incra plate now, and as others have pointed out the plate will stay with you.

On the other hand if you ever buy a serious lift (I now have the Jessem) it’ll have its own plate.

-- Dan Lyke, Petaluma California,

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