Best DIY Router Lift?

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Forum topic by MrSamNC posted 12-10-2012 02:46 AM 25700 views 7 times favorited 12 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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28 posts in 1445 days

12-10-2012 02:46 AM

Topic tags/keywords: diy router lift router lift woodgears ibuildit stumpy nubs stumpynubs plan online question

I want a router lift, but lack the technical skill to create one of my own that I feel would be as good as ones that people are selling plans for online. Can anyone give me first hand experiences with making these and their performance as well as benefits and drawbacks? I want one that is easy to build, accurate, and reliable. The ones that I’m checking into are: – Tilting router lift – – Router lift – – MicroAdjustable router lift –

Any others out there that you would recommend? I plan to pick one and build it over the next week.


-- -Sam

12 replies so far

View Peter Oxley's profile

Peter Oxley

1426 posts in 2965 days

#1 posted 12-10-2012 02:53 AM

I love the one I made from Shop Notes plans. Every time I use my router table, I wonder how I lived with a fixed-base setup. I think it’s most similar to Stumpy Nubs’ design.
Click for details

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2387 posts in 2637 days

#2 posted 12-10-2012 03:05 AM

Is there any issue with using one of the ,any routers offered on the ,market that offer above table adjustments included with the bases. We run a friend and a Milwaukee, both have excellent adjustment features for router table use, I believe other router mfg such as Triton include the features with their routers as well. If I am not mistaken, our pc890 has these features as well. With router table adjustment features so readily available for free with many router mfg, I see using an accessory lift option as being unnecessary work and cost.

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28 posts in 1445 days

#3 posted 12-10-2012 03:10 AM

I already have a router, but it does not have that feature. Would be nice though… :)

-- -Sam

View DKV's profile


3940 posts in 1594 days

#4 posted 12-10-2012 05:42 AM

Send a pm to b2rtch. He built one not long ago using a jack. I am sure he’ll help you.

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Cole Tallerman

392 posts in 1275 days

#5 posted 12-10-2012 03:28 PM

+1 on the shop notes plans. I first saw it on woodworking for mere mortals with Steve Ramsey. I was going to build the woodgears one but I wanted the motor enclosed for dust collection and then the crank wheel would be blocked. I like the simplicity of it and it can be adjusted from atop the table

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28 posts in 1445 days

#6 posted 12-10-2012 03:53 PM

Does anyone know where I can purchase the plans from?

Edit: found their website,

-- -Sam

View MrSamNC's profile


28 posts in 1445 days

#7 posted 12-10-2012 04:02 PM

Well… That was no help. No plans for a router lift! Anyone know where I can get a copy of the plans?

-- -Sam

View horsch's profile


42 posts in 1755 days

#8 posted 12-10-2012 04:02 PM

Here’s one, by American Woodworker I found a while back. It’s free and has pretty good instructions.

View Peter Oxley's profile

Peter Oxley

1426 posts in 2965 days

#9 posted 12-10-2012 04:48 PM

@ Jerry – the problems with most fixed-base-with-through-table-adjustment routers are:
1) You still have to reach underneath to clamp/unclamp the base
2) Setting the clamp usually moves the router some amount, wrecking any precision set-ups

They’re better than nothing, but I don’t know of any that compare favorably to a lift.

@ MrSam – You might be able to find a back-issue of ShopNotes #121 on eBay.

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View StumpyNubs's profile


6592 posts in 1891 days

#10 posted 12-14-2012 11:03 PM

When I designed my router lift I chose ball bearing drawer slides instead of the bronze bushings that others use because they run smoother. In my experience building jigs (which is extensive) I have found that bronze bushings tend to bind when used in a linear application. They are intended to be used with the shaft spinning inside them, not sliding up and down. This problem is greatly increased when you try to run more than one either parallel to each other, like in those photo above, or even on the same shaft. It is EXTREMELY difficult to properly align the two so one doesn’t bind the other.

I am not saying my design is best. I am just saying I personally don’t like bronze bushings for sliding mechanisms.

Whatever you choose, you’re going to love having a lift on your router!

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View nkawtg's profile


135 posts in 341 days

#11 posted 12-22-2014 10:27 PM

If anyone is interested, I was looking for ShopNotes #121 router lift and found it for sale at

I like this design so I think I’ll give it a whirl

View Rayne's profile


414 posts in 630 days

#12 posted 12-22-2014 11:58 PM

+1 on the Shopnotes router lift. The link provided by nkawtg is good as that’s where I bought mine from. I also followed through with Steve Ramsey’s design on the router table and used the Shopnotes plans for the lift. It was a fun build and am glad I have it as it has expanded my skills dramatically in building and using it.

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