Purpose of router plate.
What is the purpose of the router plate in a router table? If I made a home made route table, would I still need a router plate? I'm building the Shopnotes router lift and was wonder if I can mount it directly to my table top or I need a plate/insert?
Welcome to the Router Forums.
A router plate is a convenience. Not a necessity. It provides a means to remove the router from the table for such things as bit changes.
If one has a router that can be left in the table (i.e. a dedicated router) and has a router lift that allows raising the router to change bits, then the plate is not necessary.
In my case, I have two Bosch 1617EVS routers. One is for free-hand routing and the other stays in the table. I built a lift that allows me to raise the router for bit changes. I have no need for a plate.
The ShopNotes router lift allows the router to rise far enough to do bit changes from the top of the table. I fail to see why a plate would be necessary. Mounting the lift to the bottom of the table top should be sufficient.
If you want to do it the hard way, use a router that needs lifting through the table to change bits. If you're prepared to emerge from the Stateside way of thinking, then invest in a plunge router that allows above table bit changes and subsequently no fiddly lift is required.
Contrary to what Cassandra said (but not totally), you also need a router plate to house removable inserts. These are necessary of you want zero clearance around the bit for a cleaner cut. You could just make your own set of plates with various hole dimensions but then you would be unscrewing the router every time.
Even with a fixed base router with a lift, you would still need removable inserts unless of course your router is set-up to perform only one type of cut and the hole is sized appropriately.
Last but not least, a plate offers you a more secure way of attaching the router. If you just screw it to the table, you would need to think about threaded inserts or something more substantial than just a few wood screws holding your router upside down.
Hope this helps.
As stated you don't need a plate. You should make two or three inserts which is very easy to do and you should route the underside out otherwise your bits will not be long enough. As far as attaching the router if you are able to remove your base then do so and bolt the router directly onto the table, you will have to use washers on the top and they will have to be recessed. I made a portable table like this and it works very well for me.
Yeah, but I love the homemade plates in my homemade table. Lets me pop the router out in about 2-3 seconds, change or adjust the bit, pop it back in about 5-10 seconds. I'll take router plates over router lifts any day of the week and twice on Sunday.
Actually, I don't change my bits. I only use three different types at present, and I have each of those in a router, which is mounted on a router plate. So I can totally swap out bits in less than about 30 seconds usually. Try that with a router lift. I might get more bits if I can get some affordable routers.
more than one plate
Hi, I like plates to mount different routers, heavy duty routers with large plate openings for large bits like raise panel bits etc, and smaller routers with smaller diameter plate openings with brass inserts or pin for finer or odd shape work, pins are must for safety.
making sawdust is fun
Please see thread: http://www.routerforums.com/table-mo...uter-lift.html
Contrary to Hilton’s comments:
1. Hilton appears to be overlooking a salient point with shop-made lifts - one doesn’t need the router base. One can mount the motor unit in the lift, as done in the ShopNotes one or my design. So, no plunge base and no fixed base required.
2. You do not need a plate to house the removable inserts. I used the Incra inserts and some magnets. Works a charm – no screwing or fiddling. Drop in and pop out.
3. With my design (but not with the ShopNotes), a lever engages/disengages the threaded rod, allowing the user to raise/lower the router quickly. This is particularly useful for bit changes.
4. I challenge the statement that a plate is more secure. Whether one goes with the ShopNotes one or something along the idea I used or a combination, the router motor is securely mounted.
5. With my design, the lift is mounted to the cabinet, not the top. Consequently, the force on the mounting bolts is lateral to the bolts, and not trying to pull the bolt out of the wood. Also, the weight of the router and lift is borne by the cabinet, not the top.
If your table top is a single thickness 3/4" material, MDF, it will sag after a short period of time. If it's a double thickness of 3/4" (3/4"+3/4"=1 1/2") the top most likely won't sag but the question is 'will the router collet nuts lift high enough to loosen them for bit removal'? All this needs to be thought about and figured out. In my humble opinion, it's fine to build a table or other home built items if all the questions are answered. Personally, I choose to purchase things like a lift with plate because all the engineering has been worked out. Please don't put all the time and effort in just to find out more research needed to have been done. Happy Thanksgiving!
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