I just completed my custom router table cabinet for my Incra 17" LS Positioner. I purchased the LS Positioner and Table Combo package #3, which comes with the 17" LS Positioner, Wonder Fence, 27" x 43" Incra table top, MagnaLock plate and inserts, as well as the Incra table stand. It is a great system and I have been using it daily for various dovetail and general routing projects since I got it. The only thing lacking was a cabinet enclosure for: 1. Dust Collection 2. Router bit and accessory storage.
I bought the system with the table stand because the extruded aluminum legs accept 1/2" panels to create a base cabinet. But after setting the system up, I thought this would not be the best (or easiest) cabinet for the router table. After a few sketches and thinking outside the box, I built a couple of side by side cabinets to fit under the table.
Here are a couple of pictures of the finished product.
I first started with the Router enclosure cabinet. This is approximately 17-1/2" deep by 16" wide. The carcass is 1/2" MDF, dadoed, rabbeted and glued together. The face frame is maple, glued and pin nailed to the carcass.
The top is open and fits snugly against the bottom of the router table top, just below the plate opening.
As you can see above, the router cabinet is placed on the underside of the router table, then the leg frame is placed over the cabinet. The cabinet rest on the lower leg stretchers, making a compression fit to the table top. No screws were used to attach the cabinet to the top. Once the leg frame is centered on the top, it was screwed into place and the whole unit is turned right side up.
The drawers are constructed of scrap 1/2" MDF I had in the shop and the drawer front trim is scrap maple. I used 1" Over Travel ball bearing drawer slides on all the drawers. I recommend OT slides for all shop cabinets. It definitely allows full access to everything in the drawer.
The router enclosure cabinet is in place in the table frame and the drawers are installed. As for the dust collection box for the router, I drilled a 4" hole in the back of the cabinet to accept the fitting. The inside of the dust box is sealed with two coats of polyurethane and finished with two coats of paste wax. This nearly eliminates the friction and all the dust gets sucked right out of the enclosure.
I used a 4' PVC elbow, fit into the opening and caulked (clear) in place. Attached to that is a union fitting, then a 4"/2-1/2" wye fitting. I got these from Peachtree Woodworking (ptreeusa.com) The exhaust end of the wye is fitted with a FazLok quick disconnect, from Woodworker's Supply (woodworker.com). I use the FazLok system for all my machinery to connect to my Jet dust collector.
To secure the fittings to the cabinet, I wanted to keep it neat and tidy, so I got creative. I had and extra Blast Gate mounting bracket (available from Rockler.com) laying around and it fit the bill perfectly. Mounted a 1" thick spacer block to the back of the cabinet, attached the mounting bracket, put on the hose clamps and secured the fittings to the cabinet. It is low profile to the back of the cabinet, barely extending beyond the footprint of the table top. I have a small shop and I can tuck the whole table up against the wall when not in use.
I then wired the Router shut-off switch into the router enclosure box. I got this from Rockler as well, but there are plenty of other manufacturers of these switches. I drilled a 1-3/4" hole in the side of the cabinet, inserted a desk grommet with removable insert that I cut out to accept the cord thickness, and ran the plug from the switch to the router.
The router dust collection cabinet is installed in the table and the drawers are assembled. For the dust cabinet cover, I built a maple rail and stile frame with a 1/4" lexan panel. The lexan is a router table plate blank I bought from Woodworker's Supply. I drilled four 1" holes in the lexan for air movement in the dust box. I think that I could have gone with two or three holes to increase suction out the back, but it seems to clear the box just fine. I will play with taping a couple of the holes to find the best intake/exhaust ratio for maximum draw.
The dust door is attached with offset magnetic catches on all four corners. These are the type for full inset face frame doors. Amerock makes them and I got them at Woodworker's Supply. The door just snaps into place and comes off by grabbing through one of the intake holes. I chose to have a fully removable door so that I have full access to the inside of the dust box. I didn't like the idea of a hinged cover.
So that completes the dust collection cabinet.
The second cabinet is straight forward and I won't get into too many details. This cabinet is also made of 1/2" MDF approximately 17" W x 21" D and fits in between the upper and lower leg stretchers. I just slid it onto the lower stretchers and screwed it from the inside to the dust cabinet. I made this box about 4" deeper than the dust box for a couple of reasons.
1. the drawers are 20" deep to accept the over-sized Incra Manual and set of templates, which I keep handy in the top shallow drawer.
2. Since the table top overhangs the leg base by about 4+ inches, I wanted full access to the drawers using overtravel slides. Since I don't stand or work at this end of the table, I didn't need the foot or leg clearance. This works well and give me a little extra storage space.
That's my router table system. It is working out great. I have all my router tools, bits, accessories, templates, etc. all in one place and at hand while working on the router table.
There is one 'fix' I need to make on the table. These cabinets are heavy with all the tools inside and the side stretcher where the lever actuated wheel flexes a little when engaged. I will build a support brace inside the stretchers to stiffen it.
If I had to do it again, I probably would have left out the Incra table leg set and built the cabinet the same way but with four swivel double locking casters. All in all, I'm happy with it and, as I said, I used it almost every day. It is extremely quite and virtually NO DUST!