|Forum topic by Absinthe||posted 11-07-2011 04:47 PM||4185 views||0 times favorited||17 replies|
11-07-2011 04:47 PM
I have said it before and will say it again, the router is my least favorite tools and most feared period. If something will go wrong on a project, it will invariably go wrong with the router. (Not that other things don’t go wrong, but if the router is involved, it will have some kind of grief associated with it.
I do have a Dewalt 621 plunge that I picked up a year or two ago and have only started to play with it. Perhaps I will have better luck with the more powerful, and seemingly better built DeWalt. I do have a small veritas or vermont american (can’t remember which) router table that the craftsman fits into rather well. It has too small of a top to be all that useful, but I am about to relegate the Craftsman to a permanent home in that table.
I have been trying to build something that involved using a piece of a Sonotube (the cardboard forms used for pouring concrete) and plugging the ends with circles cut from plywood.
I determined the ID of the tube and wanted to make the circle pretty much exactly that, figuring that I could sand down to fit snugly from there. Rather than adding to the complexity of the project by building my own circle cutting jig I went to $ears and bought the one they sell. Without getting into a product review let me say that it appears to be sufficient, but I am not thrilled with the fact that the registration pin is a roll pin, and the recommended pilot hole for it is such that it is difficult to remove the finished cut piece. It is what it is, and I see no reason for it not to function as advertised.
The router motor I am using is a non-plunge Craftsman that I have had for more years than I care to remember. It is 1 HP and just refuses to die. So it is the first one I go for especially when I buy a craftsman accessory, since I know the hole pattern will match up.
Obviously a 1/4” straight bit will not hog through 3/4” plywood, as a matter of fact, I was taking 3,4 or even more passes. This is a pita with a manually adjustable (not plunge) router. (I did try a spiral bit, but the straight bit, contrary to all the advice I was given, worked better)
Anyway, as carefully as I could measure, there was always a contradiction in size, with no really good reason that I could tell. For example, once cut, I would turn the router upside down and have to use 2 screw drivers to pry off the cut piece. It was immediately obvious to my eye that there was a good 1/16 to 1/8 or even more between the exposed bit and the cut edge. I even unplugged it and rotated the bit by hand and it comes nowhere close to the cut piece. I am not certain if this is due to the bit hacking out huge chunks yet leaving a nice smooth edge? It didn’t sound logical. The adjustment screw was very tight so there was no slippage of the jig, and the registration pin was nearly as tight in the hole as if I nailed it in with a hammer.
After micro-adjusting things slightly larger and wasting lots and lots of 3/4” plywood, I came up with a few acceptable circles (hopefully gorilla glue will make up for the slight gaps. I wanted one more and began the setup 1 more time. No sooner did the router bit hit the plywood that I heard it literally explode. Not the wood, the bit. I have the piece that was left in the collet but there was not another piece of it large enough to pickup left to be found! I have never seen such a thing, and was glad my face was nowhere near the viewing area when it went lest I find out if the UL rating on my safety glasses is actually accurate.
I am now wondering if the bit may have been bad from the start and was somehow doing some kind of wobble action throughout. I replaced it today with a brand new Bosch with attached carbide rather than a solid carbide bit. Hopefully my results will get better from here.
Is there anyone out there that just LOVES using their hand held router, that can help convert me? Anyone have any ideas for projects that use one or a bunch of approximately 7-1/2” to 8” plywood and/or mdf circles? Approximate being the key word. I bought some smooth rod and threaded inserts and set screws to make an edge guide for the DW621, perhaps even a circle cutter. Help me stop cringing whenever a project calls for a router :S