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Sheet metal for router/OSS tables

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Forum topic by ADHDan posted 09-09-2013 01:18 PM 545 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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ADHDan

508 posts in 794 days


09-09-2013 01:18 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question

I was wondering how much work it would be to put a sheet of magnetic metal over the aluminum tabletops of my Bosch router table and Ridgid oscillating sander. I have a variety of magnetic featherboards and the MagJig kit for homemade table saw jigs, and I’d love to be able to use them with my other benchtop tools – for safety on the router table, and for surfacing on the OSS.

Is this even worth considering, or is it too much effort for the utility? For both tables, I’d have to be able to continue using the miter slot, and for the router table I’d need a way to make the inserts coplaner with the new metal. Thanks!

-- Dan in Minneapolis, woodworking since 11/11.


4 replies so far

View crank49's profile

crank49

3456 posts in 1657 days


#1 posted 09-09-2013 02:40 PM

16 ga steel is very close to 1/16” thick (.0598”). It weighs 2 1/2 lbs per square ft.
It would be a good choice for magnetic attachment; thick enough to be strong, thin enough to cut with a jig saw.
The fabricator I work for would charge walk-in customers about $1.00 per lb for this material; less for a whole 4’ x 8’’ sheet. They would also charge a cutting fee.

The best deal would be to buy some multiple of ? x 4ft; just requires one cut on the shear.

We also have a water jet that can cut an exact shape complete with holes for attachment and an accuracy of .002”, but this machine cost’s $90/hr with a 1/2hr minimum plus drawing time if you don’t have a cad drawing.

Whether any, or all this is worth it is a question you have to answer for yourself.

-- Michael :-{| “If you tell a big enough lie and tell it frequently enough, it will be believed.” ― A H

View Bluepine38's profile

Bluepine38

2906 posts in 1771 days


#2 posted 09-09-2013 02:53 PM

You could put a sheet of metal on top by securely clamping it, then drilling holes and using a countersink made
for drilling metal to set flat head socket head capscrews or machine screws flush with the surface to hold it
down. Then you would have to figure out a way to make and match all the needed holes and slots. The
bars for the miter tools would be too thin and would have to be fixed. I can not think of an easy way to do
this. I picked up an old 8” table saw for free and using a special metal cutting skill saw enlarged the opening
in it to take a Rockler router insert. This project got sidelined while I am customizing my 8” Delta Table saw
with extensions and a new fence. If I could afford it I would buy this unit.

http://www.grizzly.com/products/Router-Table-Attachment/T10222

and put legs on it. Not trying to rain on your parade, but I can not think of an easy way to do your conversion. If and when I get my version done, I will post it. Cast iron may not cost more than aluminum,
but it is more difficult to form and machine, so it is not used to make many of the items we might like, and
in turn, we do not want to buy those more expenisive items, so I guess it is our fault.

-- As ever, Gus-the 75 yr young apprentice carpenter

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ADHDan

508 posts in 794 days


#3 posted 09-09-2013 03:47 PM

I don’t fault Bosch or Ridgid for using aluminum; it’s lighter and generally fine for bencthop/jobsite tools. It sounds like making sheet metal tabletops might not be worth it, but maybe I can rig up a metal covering that mounts in the miter track for operations that use my magnetic jigs. That would suffice for 90% of what I want to do.

-- Dan in Minneapolis, woodworking since 11/11.

View Bluepine38's profile

Bluepine38

2906 posts in 1771 days


#4 posted 09-09-2013 06:55 PM

Almost forgot, Jame Krenov used a bandsaw table as a router table, although he stated in his book “The Fine
Art of Cabinetmaking” that his choice of bit was limited to what would fit in the small opening. If you clamp a
piece of wood under the opening to take the centering bit of a good Lennox, Greenlee, or similar hole saw,
you can enlarge the opening very easily.

-- As ever, Gus-the 75 yr young apprentice carpenter

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