wingless' Craftsman 171.25475 Router Table Restoration / Upgrade - Router Forums
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-20-2019, 06:40 PM Thread Starter
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Default wingless' Craftsman 171.25475 Router Table Restoration / Upgrade

Long ago I had a nice Craftsman router and Craftsman router table. Both suffered from long periods of inactivity and were sold. There are some upcoming projects where these tools will be useful, so I found / purchased some nice used examples.

My (new to me) Craftsman 171.25475 router table was mostly complete and in good condition. It was missing the 29L-202 / 1609441472 2" OD router table insert set that is no longer available for purchase. The cast / machined aluminum table had surface oxidation. The optional / extra Craftsman 25211 right / left steel table extensions had minor paint bubbling up from surface rust underneath the paint. The labels on the table edge and on the blade guard had degraded. That 45A-293 label set is no longer available.

One of the great features for this table is the material used for the legs and the fences. The legs and the fences are molded using glass-filled plastic. The glass increases the strength and stiffness of the plastic.

This model router table did not include a sliding miter gauge and did not include a front panel power switch when shipped / configured new from Craftsman.

The aluminum table oxidation did not bother me. I used steel wool soap pads to polish the bare aluminum to a very nice finish.

The steel table extensions were sanded bare then painted, now they look great again.

One thing I didn't like about those steel table extensions was the formed side arms w/ screw holes for attaching to the table have a formed cavity between the arm and the table. That cavity collapses when tightening those screws. I used my shop press to restore the cavity shape, then carefully put small washers into those cavities during assembly, to permit screw tightening w/o collapsing the cavity.

Note that final assembly of the steel table assembly is a two person job, at least on my router table. The extensions are loosely attached to the center table. One person pushes the upside down parts flat onto the surface, while a second person tightens the attachment bolts. This method ensures the extensions are coplanar with the center table. On my table, if the hardware is tightened as a one person operation, the side extensions droop down.

The label artwork was recreated, then printed, adhesive added and these new labels were applied to the router table and to the blade guard. The biggest butt pain was recreating / cleaning up the old small SEARS logo in the top left corner. I used 3M Super 77 aerosol spray adhesive applied to a masked-off area on the table front and on the blade guard so they would stick to the surfaces.

The correct Craftsman miter gauge w/ the optional 9-29504 hold down clamp was located and secured. Same also for the correct Kedu HY75 power switch.

The " long 10-32 flat head screws that I picked-up at the hardware store to hold the router to the bottom of the bed did not work w/o modification. I needed to cut back the head adjacent to the threads because the table thickness was insufficient for proper clamping. Now the screws work great. Both the really expensive Craftsman MPP010105023 router screws and my modified screws are shown in the images.

Now I've got a really nice / old router table. All I'm missing are the 2" OD table inserts.



Router Table As-Received


Router Table As-Received


Router Table Polished - Original Labels and Original Table Extension Paint


Router Table Polished - Original Table Extension Paint


Original and New Reproduction Label


Original and New Reproduction Labels


Craftsman 25211 Steel Table Extensions - As-Received and Sanded Bare


Craftsman 25211 Steel Table Extensions - Sanded Bare


Restored Condition - w/ Sliding Miter Gauge, 9-29504 Hold Down Clamp, Power Switch and Reproduction Labels


Router Attached to Bottom of Table and Power Switch


Router Attached to Table


Operation Manual Cover


29L-202 / 1609441472 Unobtainium Table Insert Set


Craftsman MPP010105023 Router Table Screw - Showing Undercut at Head / Threads


Standard Screws Modified w/ File to Include Undercut at Head / Threads


Completed Router Table w/ Reproduction Label




Blade Guard w/ Reproduction Label


Reproduction Labels


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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-20-2019, 08:54 PM
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Welcome to the forum! Add your first name to your profile so it shows in the side panel and clears the N/a, also so we'll know what to call you. Add your location, too.

That's a nice restoration. I had, and may still have, the same router table. It was my first time to use a router table and seems like I bought it in the mid 70's.

What's next for your projects? You can show us your shop, tools, projects, etc. whenever you're ready.

David
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-21-2019, 06:02 AM
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Welcome to the Forum...Excellent introduction...even better restoral...a well deserved WOW on the labels...

Nick

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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-21-2019, 07:30 AM
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Welcome to the forum. It is nice to see the passion that you put into this restoration. Great job!
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-21-2019, 07:32 AM
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Very nice restoration. I have a very similar Craftsman router table and Craftsman router mounted to it.

Tim in Burien
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-21-2019, 08:22 AM
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Welcome to the forum. Seems you jumped in with both feet, less a first name....I bought a Craftsman router table for my first but it was far to flimsy, not much thicker than sheet metal but with a few homemade upgrades it became much more usable. I only did very basic work with it and it found its way to the storage area fairly quickly as most of what I was doing could be done by hand. Wingnuts held the thin sheet metal fence which I beefed up with some 1" oak strips and something along those lines for the legs. I ended up securely bolting it down to a piece of plywood for more rigidity and a better way to clamp to my workbench.

You did a great job on that restoration and yours looks far more robust that mine ever could have been. I worked at Sears while in high school for a while and bought many of their tools back then in the late '60s to early '70s. You might say in their glory days.
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-21-2019, 10:50 AM
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Welcome to the Forum,

I have a small table that looks just like the original but mine is all plastic. I used it for years and still keep my old B & D router in it to do small stuff. Mine was sold under the Mastercraft brand that is exclusive to Canadian tire. I've had it for +/- 20 years.

Dan

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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-21-2019, 03:30 PM
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Nice job on the table. I have a similar looking router - still runs like new, although it doesn't get used much.

Sent from my Hallicrafters S-40 using morse code.
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-30-2019, 07:51 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks very much for all the kind words.


Quote:
Originally Posted by wingless View Post
My (new to me) Craftsman 171.25475 router table was mostly complete and in good condition. It was missing the 29L-202 / 1609441472 2" OD router table insert set that is no longer available for purchase.

Now I've got a really nice / old router table. All I'm missing are the 2" OD table inserts.



Router Attached to Table


29L-202 / 1609441472 Unobtainium Table Insert Set
That 29L-202 / 1609441472 Unobtainium table insert set is not available for purchase anywhere.

There were searches on Craig's List, eBay and Offer Up. Sellers having those parts with a table would not sell just those parts.

The Search All of Craig's List site found a seller on the other side of the country selling a table with those inserts for a reasonable price. I negotiated a purchase for just the inserts, sent him cash and a prepaid shipping label. A few days later I had my parts.

Now all is good.







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