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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-22-2011, 12:44 PM Thread Starter
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Default Router table top

Hi all at the Router Forum,

An initial question, I built a router table some years ago. Two foot by four foot, with a full length motorised aluminium fence.

It worked fine for years, until moved to a location with unstable humidity. It then warped, to the extent that it became unusable and has been dismantled.

The top was heavy duty waterproof shuttering ply. What is the best material for a stable router table top? It needs to be machinable, to take an adjustable insert and guide slots for a cross fence. Dimensions of table are four foot wide and two foot front to back.

Regards, Ron Lebar. England.
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-22-2011, 06:42 PM
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Hi Ron:

Welcome to the Router Forums!

The issue is not the material. It's the humidity's effects on the material. Given high or unstable humidity, one needs to ensure a good sealing against humidity.

As for the actual material, there are many choices. Popular ones are MDF and plywood. The key is to ensure that moisture cannot get at the wood. I have used MDF (two 3/4" layers glued together), complete with laminate top and bottom plus red oak edging. Where the MDF is exposed, I have sealed the wood with wood glue. The MDF soaked up the glue and then the glue form a hard barrier against moisture.

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Last edited by Cassandra; 07-22-2011 at 06:45 PM.
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-23-2011, 12:51 AM
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Steel or machined aluminum

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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-23-2011, 12:55 AM
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welcome to the forum, Ron.

I agree with Cassandra, 2 layers BB ply or MDF sealed with laminex/formica/HDP

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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-23-2011, 02:42 AM
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Hi Ron

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cassandra View Post
The issue is not the material. It's the humidity's effects on the material. Given high or unstable humidity, one needs to ensure a good sealing against humidity.
Of course Cassandra is absolutely correct, especially when you consider the British climate (temperate......). The main thing I'd add to what she writes is that from my own experience I've found that MR-MDF (the green, moisture resistant variety) is both denser and a lot less likely to be affected by atmospheric moisture than the ordinary brown MDF. That's why it's used for window boards and door casings on modern buildings. Once protected by a couple of layers of oil-based paint or laminate it will last a long time. MDF also has the edge on plywood in terms of surface flatness although it needs a bit more support because it's somewhat less stiff

Regards

Phil

Last edited by Mike; 07-23-2011 at 07:39 AM.
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-28-2011, 05:07 PM
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hiya ron, i have just made a table top for my new router table.
i have used a 1" thick piece of mdf, formica top & bottom,
another piece of 1" mdf on top of that, followed by another piece of formica on top of that one. sealed all the edges then wrapped it all in oak.
the size is 3 x 2 ft and i will put an elu 177e under it.
i may have gone ott with it but at least it wont sag with a couple of stretchers underneath too.

parachute for sale one red stain
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