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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-10-2010, 12:35 AM Thread Starter
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Hi, all. I found the router forums a couple of weeks ago as I was trying to locate an owner's manual for an older Craftsman router. Didn't find the manual, but what I did find was a treasure trove of information! Thanks!

It had been 10 years since I had used a router; my husband and I renovated several houses as we went through several corporate moves earlier in our marriage, with my router last being used on replacement solid wood doors for a house in Ohio, but our last move, 10 years ago, had us building a new house for the first time. With a new house and other family commitments, most of our tools have lane dormant for the last several years. That changed recently, when my husband signed up for a woodworking class in San Antonio. He promptly dragged me into it.

His first homework assignment was to pick a project and bring the plans for the project to the second class. My husband cheated...he had me do his homework for him. By the time I got through searching the Internet for projects, I was salivating over visions of built-in bookcases, a custom cutting table for my sewing, raised panel wood filing cabinets for the office...well, you get the idea.

Of course, with this renewed interest, we've started thinking about getting some new equipment I look forward to reading reviews and asking questions about what is absolutely essential to get. Thanks for a great resource.
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-10-2010, 01:06 AM
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Welcome to the RouterForums Theresa. Nice to have ya here. Thank you for joining our ever growing list of women woodworkers.




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In woodworking there is no scrap, only firewood.



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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-10-2010, 02:54 AM
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Welcome, Theresa... working with wood is an addiction, but its a healthy one!

Check out that new high-tech cordless router.. wireless and no recharging required!!
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-10-2010, 08:20 AM
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Hi Theresa:

How do you resolve the "his" and "her's" tool dilemma? Do you have separate workshops? We do.

Our method is quite simple. My wife does the demolition and the stained glass/decorating. I do the design, cooking and construction.

The essentials include a router table and skis and table. A shii is also useful, especially for architectural detail. Bits come in three categories, cheap as dirt for experimentation in soft wood, slightly more expensive for architectural details and very expensive for the fine hardwood furniture. Needless to say, I have a large collection of very cheap bits.

As for routers, you don't replace routers, you collect them. Your collection has already started so you're now looking for a good heavy >3hp plunge production router.

A typical "nice" router would look like this:
1. " chuck
2. 2 wrench collet (getting scarce but search for it - sometimes it is hidden or it can be retrofitted.)
3. Variable speed (8,000 rpm to >24,000 rpm -- nice but close to useless <3HP, but mandatory >3HP)
4. plunge base
5. able to accept or modifiable for large panel bits 3+ inches
6. straight edge guide holes adequate for ski and foot use.
7. Soft start
8. Light weight but versatile and powerful.
9. 1" (1" hole with a 1/8" shoulder) brass template guides (ideal but not likely)

The only router I know that fits this bill is the Hitachi M12V but these are no longer made and if found, it has to be modified. The replacement is the M12V2. I really don't like the spindle lock on the M12V2. The one on the old M12V could be easily bypassed for two wrench use. I don't know of the M12V2 can be "adapted" to two wrench use. Other elements seem to be ok but I won't know for sure until I see one and no one is stocking them near me.

Allthunbs

Last edited by allthunbs; 03-10-2010 at 08:34 AM.
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-11-2010, 01:15 AM Thread Starter
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Default thanks for the welcome!

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Originally Posted by Dr.Zook View Post
Welcome to the RouterForums Theresa. Nice to have ya here. Thank you for joining our ever growing list of women woodworkers.
Thanks for the welcome, Dave! I know you'll appreciate the following:
After the first two classes my husband attended in his woodworking class, he realized that spouses and significant others were allowed to come in and lend a "helping hand" to the student, so I started going along to tote and carry. One thing I noticed right away is that over half the class was women! One of the ladies attending is now taking this class for the fourth time...she uses these classes as a way to gain access to the equipment and has her projects planned out - the instructor told me that in one of the previous classes, she did a project that was 21 feet of built-in bookcases. The last class, she shared that she'll probably take it again...she wants to do a built-in bar the next time
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-11-2010, 01:19 AM Thread Starter
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Default this is an addiction I can handle

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Welcome, Theresa... working with wood is an addiction, but its a healthy one!
Hi, Jim,

My father had this "addiction" for years! I think that's one of the reasons I'm so delighted to be picking this up...I used to do a smattering of work with my Dad in his shop - lathe work, in particular. I didn't have the time to do a lot of furniture work at that time (I was in college, then grad school, then got married and moved too far away to share his shop with him), but the smell of sawdust brings back happy memories!
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-11-2010, 02:28 AM Thread Starter
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Default HIs and hers...in the past, they've been all mine...now I'll have to share

Quote:
Originally Posted by allthunbs View Post
Hi Theresa:

How do you resolve the "his" and "her's" tool dilemma? Do you have separate workshops? We do.

Our method is quite simple. My wife does the demolition and the stained glass/decorating. I do the design, cooking and construction.

The essentials include a router table and skis and table. A shii is also useful, especially for architectural detail. Bits come in three categories, cheap as dirt for experimentation in soft wood, slightly more expensive for architectural details and very expensive for the fine hardwood furniture. Needless to say, I have a large collection of very cheap bits.

As for routers, you don't replace routers, you collect them. Your collection has already started so you're now looking for a good heavy >3hp plunge production router.

A typical "nice" router would look like this:
1. " chuck
2. 2 wrench collet (getting scarce but search for it - sometimes it is hidden or it can be retrofitted.)
3. Variable speed (8,000 rpm to >24,000 rpm -- nice but close to useless <3HP, but mandatory >3HP)
4. plunge base
5. able to accept or modifiable for large panel bits 3+ inches
6. straight edge guide holes adequate for ski and foot use.
7. Soft start
8. Light weight but versatile and powerful.
9. 1" (1" hole with a 1/8" shoulder) brass template guides (ideal but not likely)

The only router I know that fits this bill is the Hitachi M12V but these are no longer made and if found, it has to be modified. The replacement is the M12V2. I really don't like the spindle lock on the M12V2. The one on the old M12V could be easily bypassed for two wrench use. I don't know of the M12V2 can be "adapted" to two wrench use. Other elements seem to be ok but I won't know for sure until I see one and no one is stocking them near me.


Hi, Ron, and thanks for the suggestions! You must have read my mind.

My husband will be delighted to hear that greetings are coming from Canada - he's a displaced Canadian, originally from Manitoba; so how does a Texan and a Canadian get together? We met in grad school here in Texas and he's been living and working in the states every since he graduated.

How do we handle the tool issue? In the past, they were all mine, not that I was trying to be grabby. Hubby worked at corporate jobs and I handled most of the renovating. With as many corporate moves as we made, it was my way of "working" while still being able to stay home and take care of the kids. Hubby would help with demolition on weekends, but finish work, including decorative painting, was my domain. When it came time to move again, we did pretty well in selling the then-renovated house. Our profits were my "salary".

Now, he's left the corporate sphere, started his own company, which still takes up a lot of his time, but it's more flexible time now and he's able to start doing things like taking a woodworking class! We live "out in the country"; our house is at the front of the property, my Mom's house towards the back of 40+ acres. So, my Dad's old workshop is just 1/4 mile down the drive...Dad passed away several years ago, and his shop has accumulated a lot of "stuff" over the years, including furniture we're trying to save to help our kids outfit their first homes when they all move out (we have one out of the house, he's not yet taken all his stuff), another just graduated from college and job hunting, and our youngest getting close to going away for college. Our first task will be to clean it out and see what's still workable. Lots of handtools still there and a radial arm saw that we've used since moving back here, so I know it still works. Need to figure out how to square it - it's slightly off. So, to answer your question, I think it will be a shared space...and we're finding that I'm good with designing, planning and measuring, and hubby is good at running the pieces through the various pieces of equipment and assembling. Finishing will be my job, as I've refinished various pieces of furniture for years - used to do a lot of antique hunting.

Here's what we've got going so far...a Craftsman Model number 315-17460 router with a 1/4 inch chuck. Our current project calls for dados for 3/4 inch plywood, so I went to Woodcraft and got a 23/32" straight bit (Freud carbide) to accommodate the slightly less than 3/4 inch plywood. I've done some test dados and this bit is awesome, although I have to do it in multiple passes to get the depth I want, as the router owner's manual (I did finally find the original) recommends only 1/8" at a time. When I went to Woodcraft, I also got some Bora Clamp edges to use as a guide. They seem to work well. (I also got a Kreg pocket screw jig, but it's still brand spanking new and I haven't had a chance to use it to put together a face-frame yet).

We do have some older router bits that we got years ago when we first got our Craftsman router, as well as some we inherited from my Dad - I believe they're all 1/4" shanks, as is the Freud I just purchased.

The large panel bits you mention are those enormous ones that you can use to do raised panels, yes? As I looked in the case a Woodcraft, I was amazed at the size of some of them...all the old bits we have are relatively small.

We do want to get another router for table use and a table and lifter (we looked at Kreg and Jessem lifters at Woodcraft and a PRL V2 on the internet at Woodpeckers) and maybe an Incra super system. The router I've been looking at is the Porter Cable 7518, which has been recommended in posts on this forum and elsewhere, as perfect for a table. It is not, however, lightweight (my husband tried it out for weight and grip at Woodcraft), so I would anticipate using it only as a table machine. One good thing is that I have Amazon coupons that would pay for it in its entirety...I have an Amazon rewards VISA and charge all our usual monthly bills that I can to it, then pay in full every month. It's like getting 1% back on all our usual expenses (electric, phone, cell phones and the like), then I hoard the coupons until I have enough to pay for something major, like a small kitchen appliance or...now, a router!

The PC does have the variable speed and the soft start; it is not a plunge router, however, but if it's used just for table use, does that make a difference? Would it be better to eventually get a plunge router as well? Something that's not as heavy? I don't have a problem using the Craftsman hand-held, but the PC is significantly heavier.

I don't know what skis are (at least for a router) and I haven't yet heard of two-wrench collets, but I'm thinking from your description that they enable you to change out the bit without having to engage the spindle lock, is that right? So if you don't have that ability (i.e. 2 wrenches), and you have a router in a table, does that mean that you have to reach underneath to engage the spindle lock, change out your bit, then fumble some more to unlock? If you use a lifter, does that make accessing the lock easier? Also, could you explain the "straight edge guide holes"?

I do have a template guide for the Craftsman that I have used in the past...but they're not brass. Why is brass preferred?

Already I'm seeing your point that "you don't replace routers, you collect them"!

Thanks for all your feedback - I couldn't have found better mentors!
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-11-2010, 03:18 AM Thread Starter
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Default oh, one more question...

As I mentioned in my original post, I found this forum looking for a manual for Craftsman router 315-17460 and found several posts here and elsewhere where people were looking for the owner's manual. I have since found our copy, yellowed, but still legible and I've scanned it into a pdf file. Is there any way I can share this with folks who are looking for a copy, as Sears no longer offers it, or is that not allowed? Please advise, as I would love to be able to help folks out, it I can.
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-11-2010, 04:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tmutchf View Post
As I mentioned in my original post, I found this forum looking for a manual for Craftsman router 315-17460 and found several posts here and elsewhere where people were looking for the owner's manual. I have since found our copy, yellowed, but still legible and I've scanned it into a pdf file. Is there any way I can share this with folks who are looking for a copy, as Sears no longer offers it, or is that not allowed? Please advise, as I would love to be able to help folks out, it I can.
Jim et al, could you respond to this message please.

Allthunbs
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-11-2010, 05:43 AM
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Hi Theresa:

Quote:
Originally Posted by tmutchf View Post
My husband will be delighted to hear that greetings are coming from Canada
There are quite a few Canadians participating, from all over the country.

Quote:
When it came time to move again, we did pretty well in selling the then-renovated house. Our profits were my "salary".
That works, as long as you don't count the hours. My how times have changed. Now, a woman has a career, sends her children to day care and wonder why they spend all their time at the mall.

Quote:
including furniture we're trying to save
My father collected anything that was "usable" and made his own tools. He was one of these guys that went to a job with a hammer, scale and scribe. Given enough space I'm sure he would have collected "free" furniture as well.

Your problem is how to separate the wood furniture that is repairable and the veneer stuff that just isn't. Some of it will be firewood and there's nothing you can do about it.

Quote:
Lots of handtools still there and a radial arm saw that we've used since moving back here, so I know it still works. Need to figure out how to square it - it's slightly off.
Ok, a bunch of stuff here. Firstly, there was a safety issue with some Sears Radial arm saws (RAS). The link below will serve two purposes for you, the first will tell you if your saw is part of the recall. If so, it is free and readily available and well worth it. Mine came with a new top as well.

Radial Arm Saw Recall

Oops, I tried the link and the setup *.pdf is no longer there. Ask them if they still have copies of the original manuals for your saw. They might have some.

That said, dig around in your budget and get yourself a reasonable table saw. Cast iron top, metal base. The RAS is good and a reasonable replacement for a mitre saw when used with a digital protractor but you'll appreciate the table saw.

Quote:
So, to answer your question, I think it will be a shared space...
Well, I hope both of you are neatness and cleanliness freaks. I couldn't work in the same space as my wife. Her stained glass shop starts out as a 12'x12' area and within hours she's knee deep in clutter.

Quote:
Here's what we've got going so far...a Craftsman Model number 315-17460 router with a 1/4 inch chuck. Our current project calls for dados for 3/4 inch plywood, so I went to Woodcraft and got a 23/32" straight bit (Freud carbide) to accommodate the slightly less than 3/4 inch plywood. I've done some test dados and this bit is awesome, although I have to do it in multiple passes to get the depth I want, as the router owner's manual (I did finally find the original) recommends only 1/8" at a time. When I went to Woodcraft, I also got some Bora Clamp edges to use as a guide. They seem to work well. (I also got a Kreg pocket screw jig, but it's still brand spanking new and I haven't had a chance to use it to put together a face-frame yet).
I think almost everyone in North America started out with a Craftsman router. I broke mine trying to tighten the collet using the shaft lock. So, your collection has started. Next, you'll be looking for ways to build a table, skis, cabinets to hold your routers and bits... ;-)

Quote:
We do have some older router bits that we got years ago when we first got our Craftsman router, as well as some we inherited from my Dad - I believe they're all 1/4" shanks, as is the Freud I just purchased.
I have some old Sears bits too. Some of them you had to "assemble." I never use them. I figure a router spins at 33,000 rpm. If one of those bits ever came apart, that's 33,000/3600=540 mph (I think!) I don't know about you but that scares the h*ll out of me.

Quote:
The large panel bits you mention are those enormous ones that you can use to do raised panels, yes? As I looked in the case a Woodcraft, I was amazed at the size of some of them...all the old bits we have are relatively small.
Yes. There's a lot of work in kitchen cabinets but once you understand how they go together, you wonder why they cost so much to purchase. You need to construct a carcass, faceframe and doors/drawers. To do fancy doors you'll want a panel bit -- one of those huge honkers that have personalities all their own and an attitude to go along with the personality. You want a big router (table mounted >3HP) that runs slowly for those.

Quote:
We do want to get another router for table use and a table and lifter (we looked at Kreg and Jessem lifters at Woodcraft and a PRL V2 on the internet at Woodpeckers) and maybe an Incra super system. The router I've been looking at is the Porter Cable 7518, which has been recommended in posts on this forum and elsewhere, as perfect for a table. It is not, however, lightweight (my husband tried it out for weight and grip at Woodcraft), so I would anticipate using it only as a table machine. One good thing is that I have Amazon coupons that would pay for it in its entirety...I have an Amazon rewards VISA and charge all our usual monthly bills that I can to it, then pay in full every month. It's like getting 1% back on all our usual expenses (electric, phone, cell phones and the like), then I hoard the coupons until I have enough to pay for something major, like a small kitchen appliance or...now, a router!
Ok, a bunch of things here. The best way to "augment" your shop is garage and yard sales. I put together my last shop that way. Real bargains to be had (except in Quebec!)

Next, you're going to get "Canadianized." You're looking at Incra et al, before you go giving your money away, go here...

The Woodworking Channel

You want to watch the videos from "The Router Workshop." Bob (the older fellow) is in Elie, Manitoba. Watch them like you're taking on a new religion. Now, you've seen what works well and simply. Everything beyond this is complicated.

Quote:
The PC does have the variable speed and the soft start; it is not a plunge router, however, but if it's used just for table use, does that make a difference? Would it be better to eventually get a plunge router as well? Something that's not as heavy? I don't have a problem using the Craftsman hand-held, but the PC is significantly heavier.
Oops, Makita 3612 for skis and table but not large bits. Some PorterCable (PC) not good for skis but OK in a table. I don't know about large bits. I have a pair of Hitachi M12V and if you can find it, grab it. This is the old dinosaur not the new M12V2 that's all fancied up with graphics and stuff. You may have to modify the M12V but that's OK, it was built to be modified and it works perfectly with skis, tables and plunge.

You absolutely want a plunge router. You'll get used to heavy. >3 hp is a minimum for a first router. After that, you can collect toys.

Quote:
I don't know what skis are (at least for a router) and I haven't yet heard of two-wrench collets, but I'm thinking from your description that they enable you to change out the bit without having to engage the spindle lock, is that right? So if you don't have that ability (i.e. 2 wrenches), and you have a router in a table, does that mean that you have to reach underneath to engage the spindle lock, change out your bit, then fumble some more to unlock? If you use a lifter, does that make accessing the lock easier? Also, could you explain the "straight edge guide holes"?
The Router workshop uses the Hitachi routers and the two wrench collet. You'll see them there. I used to use the spindle lock and couldn't tighten down on the bit enough and occasionally they would come out at full speed. I built my table with 1 1/2" thick spruce sides to "catch" flying bits. I've since switched to two wrenches and never had a problem since, including not having seized bits.

You'll have to listen to others for comments on router lifts etc.

Quote:
I do have a template guide for the Craftsman that I have used in the past...but they're not brass. Why is brass preferred?
You'll see these on the router workshop as well. Here's my explanation. Steel is very strong and very stiff. It requires lock washers to ensure a secure and permanent fastening. Brass is soft and more elastic. When you tighten up a brass guide (using a screw on ring nut) the brass deforms slightly and sticks to itself creating a permanent bond. You only need to snugly finger tighten the nut for this to happen. With steel, you need wrenches to deform the lock washer. Some fellows use nyloc nuts (nuts with nylon inserts) to secure their steel guides.

However, not all is created equal. You'll find the guides for Router Workshop are different for the guides for the PorterCable and even the Hitachi. If you take a look at the base of your router(s) you'll see that a plastic plate is held on by a few screws (3 or 4) Undo those screws, and the plastic plate comes off and you can put on the plate that The Router Workshop sells under the brand "Oak Park." Oak Park Enterprises Ltd. - Router Table, Router, Router Bits, Router Jigs, Router Accessories: Home

Now, the OakPark guides are based on a 1 1/2" through hole in the baseplate with a 1/8" shoulder. One of the things you'll run into is that the bit doesn't quite cut deep enough. With a smaller (Porter Cable) sized guide you have to find a longer bit. With the OakPark guide, you can actually get the collet nut inside the guide to give you that little bit extra cutting depth. You'll see Harry Sinclair (HarrySin) promoting his 40mm guides for his Makita 3612. If you were in the metric world I'd certainly recommend them.

Quote:
Already I'm seeing your point that "you don't replace routers, you collect them"!
Routers and clamps are collected, never retired and you never have enough.

Enjoy safely.

Allthunbs

Last edited by allthunbs; 03-11-2010 at 05:50 AM.
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