Rabbets in thin workpiece?

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Forum topic by elm posted 02-19-2014 05:49 PM 743 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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16 posts in 1198 days

02-19-2014 05:49 PM

Topic tags/keywords: oak grain oak stack dado tear out small workpieces back routing rabbet stack dado set grain

Suggestions please.
I am trying to mass produce several dozen trivets that measure 8 1/2” square. Frame is made from 3/4” square red oak strips. Inside this frame is 7” square filled with wine corks. Bottom is 1/4” hardboard glued into 3/8” x 1/4” rabbet cut in frame. A 1/4” round over bead is around outside edge.

On first few I assembled frame. Then routed rabbet and decorative round over bead on router table. Oak grain is such that there is lost of tear out. Tried back routing in places. Had minimal success. Don’t like the back routing thing anyway.

Thought I would try cutting rabbet in oak strips on table saw with stack dado set. Then miter corners and glue up frame. Problem is how to cut rabbet safely on such small workpieces.

Any ideas, please?

4 replies so far

View BinghamtonEd's profile


2263 posts in 1789 days

#1 posted 02-19-2014 06:16 PM

I would take a length of the 3/4×3/4 red oak and rabbet it on the router table using featherboards to keep it against the table and fence. If I were mass producing it, I would make a miter jig for a small handsaw that was basically a block of wood that had a 3/4” groove in it, along with a kerf at 45 deg to the groove. Take the strip with the rabbet, put it in your miter jig, make the cut. Move the piece, repeat. You could add a stop block to the miter jig and whip these things out fast.

Edit : If you’re getting a lot of tearout on the router table, you may be taking off too much in one pass. I assume the grain runs along the 3/4” strip and not perpendicular to it. You could also score the rabbet before cutting it to help cut down on the tearout.

-- - The mightiest oak in the forest is just a little nut that held its ground.

View Redoak49's profile


1819 posts in 1408 days

#2 posted 02-19-2014 11:19 PM

For round over router bits, I have found the Freud Quadra Cut ones have the least amount of tear out on oak. There is a lot of difference in router bits and how well they perform for tear out.

The suggestion to take smaller cuts is a great one.

View joeyinsouthaustin's profile


1294 posts in 1492 days

#3 posted 02-19-2014 11:23 PM

+1 post 1 I would do in router table. If TS is your option, mill the peices wide, run the dado on two sides of a wider board, then resaw in half or down to the size needed, to make safer. I do this often when milling profile that will be smaller.

-- Who is John Galt?

View bondogaposis's profile (online now)


3969 posts in 1771 days

#4 posted 02-19-2014 11:24 PM

I would cut the rabbet first on a wide board then rip it to finish width after the rabbet was cut. You could rabbet both sides of the board then rip 2 from each board.

-- Bondo Gaposis

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