Ok someone explain this... router fence question

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Forum topic by Jofa posted 01-03-2014 02:25 AM 956 views 0 times favorited 16 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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267 posts in 872 days

01-03-2014 02:25 AM

Hey guys.

I think I have a mental block here or something. So I have a router table and a fence. I basically want to use a 1/4” straight bit so that I can use it as a kind of a joiner. (hoping I get the technical terms correct here).

What I don’t understand is when the stock goes through the blade, it’s then thinner than the original piece (duh). What happens is that this doesn’t create a true flat cut.

I’m probably not ‘splaining it correctly so please see the image…

Someone teach me something here. Thanks.

-- Thank you Lord for the passion and ability to make things from your creation.

16 replies so far

View Luke's profile


545 posts in 2328 days

#1 posted 01-03-2014 02:30 AM

The outfeed side of the fence has to stick out the distance that you are taking off. This is usually accomplished with a moveable outfeed fence but from the drawing it looks like yours is solid one piece. So maybe double sided tape a really thin piece to the outfeed side for the stock to ride on and adjust until you get it right.

-- LAS,

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92 posts in 1127 days

#2 posted 01-03-2014 02:32 AM

Some of the commercial tables have an extendable portion of the fence after the bit to make up the difference, or the fence after the bit is separate from the fence before it. I suppose you could attach some type of very thin material (equal to what you are taking off) if your fence does not have that built-in.

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2557 posts in 832 days

#3 posted 01-03-2014 02:34 AM

For instance, on this fence there are shims used:

-- "Man is the only animal which devours his own, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor." ~Thomas Jefferson

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1415 posts in 1894 days

#4 posted 01-03-2014 02:34 AM


Nice illustration and good question.

The secret is to build up or offset the outfeed side of the fence to make it even with the cutting edge of the router bit. You can do it either by adding a thin shim layer to a one piece fence or by adjusting the outfeed fence if you have a split fence.

You can do something very similar with a table saw.

Good Luck!

Be Careful!


-- Herb, Florida - Here's why I close most messages with "Be Careful!"

View gfadvm's profile


13738 posts in 1724 days

#5 posted 01-03-2014 02:36 AM

You only want to expose about 1/16” of your router bit in front of the fence. Then shim the outfeed side (where you pictured the gap) with strips of Formica or? (these need to be as thick as the portion of router bit in front of the fence): 1/16” in my example. Hope I haven’t confused you more!

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View Picklehead's profile


902 posts in 964 days

#6 posted 01-03-2014 02:44 AM

I use formica on the outfeed side of my router jointer fence, which is just a piece of MDF laid flat on the router table. I really only use it for stuff I wouldn’t want to run over my HSS jointer blades, like MDF or melamine.

-- You've got to be smarter than the tree.

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Mark Shymanski

5170 posts in 2747 days

#7 posted 01-03-2014 02:45 AM

I’ve used those plastic gift cards that stores hand out, they were just the right thickness for my ‘jointing’ and they are fairly robust so don’t tear or wear out too easily.

-- "Checking for square? What madness is this! The cabinet is square because I will it to be so!" Jeremy Greiner LJ Topic#20953 2011 Feb 2

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418 posts in 762 days

#8 posted 01-03-2014 02:48 AM

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13738 posts in 1724 days

#9 posted 01-03-2014 03:23 AM

Kevin just proved that a “picture is worth a thousand words”. Thanks

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View bowedcurly's profile


515 posts in 763 days

#10 posted 01-03-2014 03:33 AM

you should be able a get straight sides on your tablesaw, making a fence extesion and turn the bow side out from the blade the extension will let the 2 points of the board contact the fence at all times while the saw cuts out the bow then turn the board over to the sawed straight side cut the other side off and you have a stright board, if this is what your trying to do, take a pc of mdf and clamp to your fence this should work, or shim out your fence on the router table, but the tablesaw is great for edge jointing a bowed board

-- Staining killed the wood<<<<<>>>>>Dyeing gave it life

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515 posts in 763 days

#11 posted 01-03-2014 03:34 AM

I learned this trick from a Charles Neil video but this is before I had a jointer this how I done ething, I tried the router table trick and give up, to slow to much of a setup trick, tablesaw is very fast and very good at edge jointing

-- Staining killed the wood<<<<<>>>>>Dyeing gave it life

View BarneyRubble318's profile


5 posts in 640 days

#12 posted 01-03-2014 05:04 AM

Oh, this is great stuff. If I have the router version of this set up, when would I need a true joiner?

Does anyone have a pic of what bowedcurly is talking about, too, or is it pretty much the same pic, just replace the router bit with the top of the saw blade?

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4085 posts in 1847 days

#13 posted 01-03-2014 05:09 AM

I have this setup available on my router table, but I don’t use it. It is limited to mostly edge jointing because the maximum router bit length is about 2”.
I prefer the jointer where I can face joint, and edge joint with longer reference surfaces. My jointer is about 76” long, whereas my router table is only 30”.

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

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285 posts in 1992 days

#14 posted 01-03-2014 05:14 AM

Barney, the router option sub works so long as you’re edge jointing. Joint a face and you’ll need a ridiculously large /long straight bit.

-- - Crud. Go tell your mother that I need a Band-aid.

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515 posts in 763 days

#15 posted 01-04-2014 02:17 AM

watch Charles Neil ep 1 of building a pie safe and he has some great info on gettting edge joints without a jointer very good stuff

-- Staining killed the wood<<<<<>>>>>Dyeing gave it life

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