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Slot cutter vs biscuit jointer

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Forum topic by MikeOB posted 1006 days ago 2061 views 0 times favorited 9 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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MikeOB

89 posts in 1747 days


1006 days ago

I need to use a couple fasteners like these:

http://www.rockler.com/product.cfm?page=784&filter=clips

I have a cabinet I need to replace a top on. I do not have a biscuit jointer but I have a slot cutter. Would it be too dangerous to use a slot cutter in a hand held router to make a couple groves in or does someone have another idea?

-- Mike, Portage, WI


9 replies so far

View HerbC's profile

HerbC

1161 posts in 1486 days


#1 posted 1006 days ago

Mike,

If you’re careful you could use the router with a slot cutter to make the slot for the bracket. I assume you have a router with speed control and can run slow enough for the slot cutter? If I was doing this I would clamp a 2X to the outside of the apron, even with the top edge of the apron to provide a wider surface for the router faceplate. And of course I’d recommend an edge guide instead just using the bearing. Make a temporary one out of scrap wood with a notch for the slot cutter. The edge guide will resist the tendency of the router to rotate as you engage the slot cutter into the wood.

Practice on scrap to get the feel for using the cutter. If done right it should not be any worse than using a biscuit cutter.

Be Careful!

Herb

-- Herb, Florida - Here's why I close most messages with "Be Careful!" http://lumberjocks.com/HerbC/blog/17090

View 404 - Not Found's profile

404 - Not Found

2544 posts in 1595 days


#2 posted 1006 days ago

You shouldn’t have any problem using the router for your slot cutting. Just add on a piece to make the baseplate more stable like HerbC said.

View Bernie's profile

Bernie

414 posts in 1463 days


#3 posted 1006 days ago

If you’re concerned about accuracy (exact width and depth) of the cut, rout out your a bit shy of the needed space, then finish or expand the notch with straight chisels. Otherwise, jump directly to a post above us.

-- Bernie: It never gets hot or cold in New Hampshire, just seasonal!

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pmayer

565 posts in 1692 days


#4 posted 1006 days ago

I agree with Herb’s approach. If you are intimidated by that approach, You also might try doing this by using a drill and making a series of holes, and clean out the waste with a chisel. Doesn’t have to be super clean for this application.

I am assuming that the top is made from solid wood, so you therefore will use this system to allow for expansion and contraction. you could also accomplish this by attaching a wooden block to your cabinet sides, and drilling a hole through it to run a screw to the top. Make the hole slightly over sized so that the screw’s threads won’t bite in, and then also elongate the hole in the direction of your wood movement by rocking the drill back and forth in that direction while the bit is protruding through the hole. Essentially you are creating a sloppy hole that will still hold the screw solidly, and this will accommodate enough wood movement for most cabinet applications. I wouldn’t necessarily try this on a wide kitchen table, but it would probably work for that as welll, depending on the species, cut orientation of the boards (quartersawn will expand and contract less) and seasonal humidity changes in your home.

-- PaulMayer, http://www.vernswoodgoods.com

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richgreer

4522 posts in 1701 days


#5 posted 1005 days ago

Another idea is to put the board for the apron on your table saw with the blade all the way down. Clamp the board in place and raise the blade as it’s cutting.

Determine in advance how many turns you need to get the blade up to the right height.

This would give you an elongated slot, but I don’t see any harm in that.

This strikes me as a better idea than trying to handle a router.

-- Rich, Cedar Rapids, IA - I'm a woodworker. I don't create beauty, I reveal it.

View HerbC's profile

HerbC

1161 posts in 1486 days


#6 posted 1005 days ago

Rich,

That would be a good solution if you were building this from scratch but it appears to me that the cabinet is already built and he needs to groove the “apron” (my term, not the OP) which is already assembled in the cabinet, they’re just replacing the top…

Herb

-- Herb, Florida - Here's why I close most messages with "Be Careful!" http://lumberjocks.com/HerbC/blog/17090

View Gregn's profile

Gregn

1642 posts in 1610 days


#7 posted 1005 days ago

Have you considered using these?
https://www.google.com/search?source=ig&hl=en&rlz=&q=figure+8+table+top+fasteners&oq=figure+8+table+top+fasteners&aq=f&aqi=&aql=&gs_sm=e&gs_upl=2313l23400l0l
Just a thought, otherwise as Herb describes is about the best way to go.

-- I don't make mistakes, I have great learning lessons, Greg

View Cory's profile

Cory

723 posts in 2046 days


#8 posted 1005 days ago

I’ve use the ones Greg mentioned on multiple occasions. They’re super easy to install and have held up for years.

-- The secret to getting ahead is getting started.

View Drew - Rock-n H Woodshop's profile

Drew - Rock-n H Woodshop

633 posts in 1317 days


#9 posted 1005 days ago

I agree with Greg. Figure 8’s are super easy to install. You just need a Forstner bit and a drill and Voila you have an easy way to attach your top.

-- Drew -- "I cut it twice and it's still too short!"- Rock-n H Woodshop - Moore, OK

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