ROUTER TABLE - Mark 2 - Under Construction






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I have just laid some new flooring and I need a decent router table to make upwards of 12 transition strips to fit the floor edges at the doors and on the stairs. I can't justify 400 pounds for a decent router table and I did not want to waste money on a cheap one, so I decided to make one.


I used the Kreg Insert Plate to mount my router. Instead of routing a rabbit to support the Insert Plate I decided to mount the plate using height adjusters as per the Kreg instructions. Kreg sell a set of 4 adjusters for about 20 pounds. Seeing as I had a lathe and mill, and no time to wait, I decided to make my own plate adjusters.

 

↓ Here are the Kreg adjusters. I did not duplicate these, I just used the idea.
In hindsight I should have duplicated these as they now look easier to make than my ones.
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I cut the blanks for my four adjusters out of an offcut of 1/4inch mild steel plate.
I used Super Glue and glued the four pieces together to make a block. I then squared up the edges of the block using a fly cutter.
↓ Here are the four pieces still glued together in a block, after the fly cutting operation. The faces are out of square by about 0.5mm to 1.0mm, which is close enough for this job.
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↓ Before separating the four pieces I drilled all the holes in one go.
I also managed to tap the four 1/4inch x 20 threaded holes in one go.
The top piece is just starting to work loose. That caused a minor problem as later on it would not line up when I again reassembled the pieces into a block (oh well, another lesson learnt). As a result, the 4 pieces were not exactly the same, but it does not matter on this job.
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↓ I separated the four pieces and tapped the 8 off M4 threaded holes individually.
The 8 off M4 threaded holes are used to adjust the height of the Insert Plate.
The 4 off 1/4inch X 20 (1/4inch BSW) threaded holes are used to hold down the Insert Plate.
The 12 plain holes at the peripheries are 4mm diameter and accept wood screws to secure the adjusters to the router table.
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↓ The corners were too sharp. I did not have time to round them off using the rotary table so I cut each corner at 45 degrees.
I drove a couple of 4mm brass pins through the plates to secure the plates together.
I mounted the block in a v block in the vice and fly cut the corners.
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↓ Here they are after shaping, still pinned together by 2 brass pins.
I did not bother machining the large faces. I only machined the edges.
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↓ Here they are separated and finished for now.
I have not got time to polish them up. They will function.
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↓ This is one of the four brackets with all its' adjuster screws and wood screws.
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↓ I have a lot of 18mm and 25mm MDF offcuts lying around so I decided to use them for this Router Table.
The Router Table top should really be made out of a hard wearing surface (such as Formica).
I figure the Router Table top is a quick and easy thing to make, so if I wear this one out (or decide I need to upgrade) then I can use Formica on the next one.
I cut the recess in the table and loosely inserted the Insert Plate.
I also routed two 10mm slots for the fence.
This is a view of the top of the Insert Plate.
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↓ This is a view of the top of table with the Insert Plate in the recess and showing the four brackets that will be fitted underneath to keep the Insert Plate flush with the table top.
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↓ This is a view of the underside of the Insert Plate in the recess.
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↓ Here are the brackets in the recess in the table.
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↓ Here are all four brackets fixed in position on the underside of the table.
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↓ Here is a close up of one of the adjuster brackets.
The two M4 pan head screws adjust the height.
The single M5 screw secures the Insert Plate to the bracket.
The three wood screws secure the bracket to the table.
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↓ Now that the Insert Plate fixings were sorted out it was time to fix the router base to the underside of the Insert Plate.
I had to get the router base fixings as far away from the centre as possible, so I drilled four new holes in the router base casting.
The M5 countersunk screws (with nuts to keep them upright for the picture) are sitting loosely in the newly drilled plain holes.
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↓ I transferred the four 5mm hole positions from the router base onto the Insert Plate. I then very carefully drilled the four 5mm holes and countersunk them.
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↓ The four M5 countersunk screws are loosely inserted into the Insert Plate.
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↓ After a couple of unsatisfactory attempts at fixing the router base to the Insert Plate I ended up spending a lot of time making two proper brackets.
I enjoyed doing this job a lot. The Warco milling machine was cutting lovely and purred away as I milled the fixing brackets. The Mill Quill Depth Stop modification I did certainly helps to keep things rigid.
I had to do a lot of machining on the brackets, to ensure they did not foul the numerous protrusions on the router base casting.
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↓ The routerbase is positioned over the four M5 countersunk screws.
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↓ The first bracket is fitted.
Notice I had to mill a shallow slot in this bracket so it cleared the raised arrow in the router base casting.
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↓ The other bracket is fitted.
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↓ I'm pleased that this fixing method turmed out ok. It was well worth the extra time making the brackets.
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↓ The router is now firmly fixed to the Insert Plate.
I will trim the screws and add locking washers on completion.
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I did not fancy fiddling about underneath the table top to adjust the router height. I found this annoying on my Mark 1 router table experiment. I decided to modify the router and make a lifting mechanism that can be operated from above the table top.

↓ This is the lift drive assembly.
There is a 6mm hex drive on the left.
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↓ I obtained a length of 10mm diameter silver steel and a block of mild steel cut from a old laminated bar I had lying around.
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↓ This block was a touch too large, so I cut a sliver off in the bandsaw. I just love my Clarke bandsaw.
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↓ I machined the block to fit in the tight space between the bracket and the router bellows.
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↓ The block will be secured to the base using an M5 screw passing through the larger hole B.
↓ The drive shaft of the lift mechanism will pass through the smaller hole.
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↓ This is the underside of the router base.
I inserted a drill through each hole, to make witness marks on the block.
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↓ I drilled and reamed a 10mm and a 5mm hole in the block. I had to be as accurate as I could be on this job.
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↓ Here is the blank 10mm shaft inserted in the block. It is a very good fit.
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↓ Here is the block and blank shaft positioned on the router.
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↓ I had to cut an M10 thread on one end of the shaft.
I used the Clarkson to form a 60degree thread cutting tool.
I screwcut the long M10 thread in the lathe.
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↓ Just as I was nearing completion I ran the cutting tool into the centre in the tail stock and broke the 60 degree tip.
I decided to finish the thread using a standard 10mm die. This was easy as the hard work had been done using the lathe.
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↓ The block was cut down.
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↓ I made a phosphor bronze bush to fit the 10mm reamed hole in the block.
The bore in the bush is drilled and reamed 8mm.
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↓ I pressed the bush into the block. Nice.
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↓ I machined the end of the shaft to fit inside the bush.
I drilled a 4mm hole in the end of the shaft.
I cut the bent part off of a 6mm Hex Key and turned the end down to 4mm diameter.
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↓ The hex drive section is brazed (silver solder) into the end of the shaft.
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↓ Here is the shaft end inserted in the bush in the block.
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↓ Here is the shaft mounted on the router.
The hex drive is at the bottom and is used to rotate the shaft.
The shaft rides in the bronze bush in the block.
As the threaded portion of the shaft rotates it lifts the router up or down.
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↓ The shaft needs to be fixed in position so that it does not move up or down.
I machined a groove in the shaft.
I made a locking piece to fit in the groove in the shaft.
The block is secured to the router base by an M5 screw and nut.
Here is the locking piece being tried on top of the block.
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↓ After the trial fits I machined the block and the locking piece to a more reasonable size.
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↓ Here is the shaft assembly sitting on a v-block.
Note that the locking piece sits in the groove in the shaft and this keeps the shaft in place and allows it to rotate freely.
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↓ Here is the shaft assembly fitted to the router.
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↓ Here is the cranked handle used to turn the shaft on the lift mechanism.
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↓ I cut up a 10mm diameter bar 250mm long.
A 6mm socket will be brazed onto the end of this shaft. The shaft needs a square end to hold the socket.
I made an indexing block to index the four flats on the end of the shaft. I secured the shaft in the indexing block and machined the first flat. After each flat was milled I simply rotated the holding block in the vice and milled the next flat, and so on.
↓ Here is the 250mm main shaft secured in the indexing block.
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↓ There are quite a few bits to this simple job that took all day.
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↓ This is the knob that is used to turn the crank.
The bore is 10mm deep and is reamed to 10mm diameter.
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↓ This is the 10mm diameter shaft that the knob is fixed to.
One end of this shaft has an internal M4 thread and the other end is turned down to 6mm.
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↓ Here is the knob on the shaft.
The knob is retained on the shaft by an m4 socket screw. When the m4 screw is tight the knob can still freely rotate.
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↓ Here is the main shaft and the shaft sleeve.
The sleeve is simply a length of steel tube with a 10mm ID bore. The sleeve slips over the main shaft and is free to rotate. The sleeve is gripped in the left hand, and the main shaft, that the socket is brazed to, rotates within the sleeve.
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↓ Here is the sleeve on the main shaft, snugged up against the socket that has been brazed onto the end of the main shaft.
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↓ The end of the main shaft is turned down to 6mm diameter, to fit in the 6mm hole in the square section link.
I will braze the main shaft onto the square link.
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↓ The end of the knob shaft is turned down to 6mm diameter, to fit in the 6mm hole in the square section link.
I will braze the knob shaft onto the square link.

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↓ Here is a trial assembly of the parts.
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↓ I quickly put a radius on each end of the square section link. I did this free hand on the linisher and it turned out very accurate.
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↓ I gave it a coat of B&Q hammered paint. The paint still feels soft even after a few days. It will have to do for now. It is only a cranking handle.
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↓ Here you can see the sleeve that is free to turn on the shaft.
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↓ Here is the finished crank. It is a bit bulky, but it works well. I will make a more delicately proportioned smaller crank when I have a bit of time to spare.
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