Router Bit for Template?

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Forum topic by Adamal posted 05-25-2013 02:17 PM 1200 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Adamal's profile


58 posts in 2023 days

05-25-2013 02:17 PM

Hi all.

I’m in the process of building a router table and I’ve ordered the Rockler aluminum insert along with a template. Rockler recommends a 1/2” wide by 1/4” deep pattern bit for the insert.

You can see what I mean here (click the More Info tab):

They say that you can use longer pattern bits too, but I don’t see how. If I bring the bit up high enough to only cut the 1/4” that I need, the bearing will be above the template. The only way I can see it working is to put spacers between the template and table.

I’m thinking that I could use my 1/2” straight bit and a bushing, but I’ve never used a bushing before.

I now I must be missing something here…

I would just order the bit from Rockler, but with shipping it’s around $28 and my favorite bit store (MLCS) doesn’t seem to carry them.

Any suggestions?


6 replies so far

View distrbd's profile


2252 posts in 2469 days

#1 posted 05-25-2013 03:14 PM

This is how I did mine:

-- Ken from Ontario, Canada

View Adamal's profile


58 posts in 2023 days

#2 posted 05-25-2013 03:20 PM

I now realize that the template is 1/2” thick so I could get away with a 1/2” deep bit and still be able to grab the template.

I’m still wondering though, how you’d use a 1” bit like Rockler says.

View a1Jim's profile


117114 posts in 3599 days

#3 posted 05-25-2013 03:42 PM

This is a pretty easy process ,I would make my own templete as you can see Ken’s looks like he just pocket screwed a template together. The thickness of the template is not that important as long as it’s thick enough to have a bearing or router guide follow the pattern . If in doubt practice this on some scrap or inexpensive material before cutting out you router table top. These type of guides are all you need plus a long enough router bit in a plunge router if you have one.

The Brass Template Guide Kit(you really only nee one guide)

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View kdc68's profile


2657 posts in 2299 days

#4 posted 05-25-2013 03:49 PM


distrbd offers a great solution. But since you ordered the $11 template already, you can elevate it by using spacers. The amount you need to elevate is dependent on the cutter length of your top bearing flush cut/pattern bit , the thickness of the template, and the depth of cut. Nothing exact, just as long as you elevate the template high enough so the bearing on the flush cut/pattern bit contacts the template. If you have reference lines drawn on the table top for where the router plate will go, you may want to place your spacers flush with the inside of the template for easy placement with the layout lines. You can use double stick tape to apply the spacers

I don’t recommend using a bushing guide unless you make your own template as a1Jim suggests. The template you ordered is cut to size for the plate and made to be used with a flush cut /pattern bit. In order to use a bushing guide, the template would have to be bigger by the offset between the bushing guide and the 1/2 straight bit you have. The offset may be 1/8”, thus the inside dimension your purchased template would need to be bigger by 1/8”

Edit...the inside of the template would need to be bigger by a 1/4” if the offset of the guide and the bit is 1/8”

-- Measure "at least" twice and cut once

View Cosmicsniper's profile


2202 posts in 3181 days

#5 posted 05-25-2013 04:00 PM

You can’t use straight bit and bushing because then the routed out portion won’t match your template.

I’d just put a sacrificial spacer board between the table and template.

-- jay,

View a1Jim's profile


117114 posts in 3599 days

#6 posted 05-25-2013 04:01 PM

I agree if you make your own Template make sure you allow for the thickness of the guide in your calculations. That’s one reason to do a test on scrap first. BTW if you don’t have a plunge router you can just drill a hole in the area your going to cut out (Perhaps a corner)and put your you router bit through the hole to start your cut.

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

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