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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-18-2011, 02:02 AM Thread Starter
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Default sliding table router table?

I am contemplating the purchase of a sliding table type of router table, specifically Grizzley model # G0525. Does anyone have any experience with this particular table or sliding type tables in general, including perhaps one you have designed and built yourself?
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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-18-2011, 09:15 AM
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Ron, the G0525 is a dust collector; I am guessing you meant the G0528 router table. If this is what you really want Grizzly makes decent products. I am certain you have never seen an episode of the Router Workshop TV show. On the show Bob and Rick taught us to "Keep things simple." I feel your money would be better spent buying a different table or even building your own. That is just my opinion for what it is worth and there is no wrong way to go about it. The Oak Park table(my favorite) is no longer available and if I were going to buy a table it would be the one shown here with the phenolic plate: MLCS Router Table Top, Fence, and Cabinet Base
This table top and stand costs about $210 which would let you include a router combo kit and bits for the same money you are considering spending on the fancy table. Food for thought.

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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-18-2011, 09:40 AM
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I agree with Mark.

Also, although I'm interested in a sliding router table as well, I wouldn't buy (or build) one like the Grizzly G0528. It's not a true slider but more of a router table with a built in coping sled. From the picture, it looks like the sliding table surface is slightly higher than the cast iron stationary half of the table. This would be necessary to make the slider work well but I think it could make it more difficult to get accurate cuts by introducing a slight tipping to a workpiece. This would also make it necessary to remove the slider when cutting narrow and wide pieces on the same setup (I'm assuming it's easily removed). Also if the slider doesn't have zero play, the accuracy of some cuts could be off.

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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-18-2011, 07:24 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you both for your replys & input. Mark, you are correct about the typo error in Grizzley model # G0528. I have seen what seems to be the exact same table available from 3 different sources (incl. MCLS model # 1217) probably all manufactured by the same company? I have a basic Rockler table w/fence etc. & a Porter Cable combo setup that has served me well. However, I have a paying project underway that demands a certain set of criteria that I can't get with my setup without significant modification. That's what led me to go shopping...it's a time vs money situation. I have been working my way thru all the shop made table pics in the forum and haven't found anything with a sliding type solution. That's why I posted...looking for opinions and ideas that might help lead me to make the best decision.
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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-18-2011, 07:43 PM Thread Starter
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Perhaps it will help if I explain the project and the reasoning that have led me to this point. I am creating 250 sq. ft. of tongue & groove flooring. I am engineering it from Hawaii grown hardwoods that I am custom milling. The end product will be 3/4" thick X 4" wide X 4' long. I need to route a tongue on 1 side and 1 end and a groove on 1 side and 1 end of each piece. It must be done precisiely so all the pcs. fit together in all dimensions. And it must be done with effiecient repeatability. I considered purchasing a shaper but I really don't have room for another machine and the cost for a machine that is a significant improvement over my router setup is more than double the cost of this sliding table. Yes, I can probably design and build what I need but that takes me away from the production milling and vacumn bagging process that I am in the middle of. Also, I have a schedule to get this flooring installed for the customer. And that schedule has to include plenty of acclimation time for the wood in between each stage. It's a fun project that I am really enjoying, but I have to do it accurately and effeciently if I am going to make any money on the bid price. Thanks again for your input!
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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-18-2011, 08:25 PM
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Ron, when I was building a new home in the vicinity of several lumber mills in timber country, I was advised against using a router to make flooring from red oak planks.

To prove his point, one mill superintendent showed me the machinery he used to make flooring commercially. Large, specialized shapers. 3-phase motors. Flooring needs profiles on both ends. And on both sides. But most importantly, you need to grooves cut on the underside to prevent bowing and cupping due to floor moisture. Look at a piece of prefinished flooring at Home Depot. The kind that is factory sprayed. Flooring doesn't just sit there. It has a job to do.

First off, aside from all the various cutters, you would need a power feeder to run all those board feet through the machine. We had need for about 800 linear feet for my house, and that would have entailed processing 4000 linear feet of wood edges and faces. Cutters would break down if your arms didn't fall off first. It would not be fun. And I could have bought the raw cut timber for less than $1/ft.

And do you have a cyclone dust collection system? Some jobs are best left to the big boys, and in this case, that means a shaper with good DC, and a Power Feed.
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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-19-2011, 05:26 AM
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Wow Ron, that is a big project you are working on. Here are my thoughts on the process: the sliding table is not long enough to be of much help. A second router table would be; once you have the bits set up as needed keep them in the tables and don't remove them until you complete your project.(Unless you need to replace a bit that dulls) Make a couple of set up blocks and label them incase you do have to change the bits. Looking at commercial flooring is a good idea; the engineers have spent many hours figuring out what works so why not take advantage of this? I have a box full of pieces of oak flooring that a friend gave me, left overs from a job he did. It has a center section cut out as opposed to grooves but it strikes me either would work. You might try making a partial cut with either the Whiteside fine finger joint bit in photo 1 or the MLCS box joint bit in photo 2? Good luck on this.
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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-20-2011, 02:16 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you Gary for your concern about my arms falling off, what a way to go, having fun in my shop! Your comments about industrial equipment for manufacturing flooring are valid. However, I am not in to manufacturing. This is a relatively small foray into an area that at this time does not justify that level of investment. I am confident in my abilities to produce an extremely high end custom engineered flooring using my existing shop & tools with an upgrade to my router capabilities. Mark, I came to the same conclusions of the sliding table not being long enough to serve my needs. Plus, the freight to get it to Hawaii almost doubled the price and was a deal breaker. Today I ordered an Incra LS Super System Combo # 3 with router table & base. That will give me the precision repeatability I need and I will add a coping sled and straight line jig as well as folding wing tables to give me the support for 48" engineered planks. I do not believe the bottom relief cuts are necessary for a floating type engineered flooring with double membrane moisture protection over a concrete base. I am happy to explain the flooring construction and reasoning to anyone interested. I still think the sliding table concept is interesting and probably has merit in the overall router table field, but I have decided it is not the solution for my current needs and decided to move on in another direction. Thank you all for your input and maybe this will spur someone to think about the possibilities that have not yet been explored in this area and come up with something new that coul serve us all.
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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-20-2011, 10:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ronaloha View Post
Thank you Gary for your concern about my arms falling off, what a way to go, having fun in my shop! Your comments about industrial equipment for manufacturing flooring are valid. However, I am not in to manufacturing. This is a relatively small foray into an area that at this time does not justify that level of investment. I am confident in my abilities to produce an extremely high end custom engineered flooring using my existing shop & tools with an upgrade to my router capabilities. Mark, I came to the same conclusions of the sliding table not being long enough to serve my needs. Plus, the freight to get it to Hawaii almost doubled the price and was a deal breaker. Today I ordered an Incra LS Super System Combo # 3 with router table & base. That will give me the precision repeatability I need and I will add a coping sled and straight line jig as well as folding wing tables to give me the support for 48" engineered planks. I do not believe the bottom relief cuts are necessary for a floating type engineered flooring with double membrane moisture protection over a concrete base. I am happy to explain the flooring construction and reasoning to anyone interested. I still think the sliding table concept is interesting and probably has merit in the overall router table field, but I have decided it is not the solution for my current needs and decided to move on in another direction. Thank you all for your input and maybe this will spur someone to think about the possibilities that have not yet been explored in this area and come up with something new that coul serve us all.
I'm sure that it's the same as my table, they are sold worldwide under many different names. The reason I bought it to replace my perfectly good simple Triton? It looked very high tech. and was a second hand bargain! Not good criteria for buying a router table. Would I do it over again, not a chance. In my usual humble opinion,for top quality work a flat table with a tall fence, no bells and whistles is all that is required. As has been said, don't waste your money.
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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old 10-20-2011, 10:18 AM
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IMHO the back grooves on flooring are relief for wood movement irregardless of moisture barrier under the flooor. Hardwood flooring is commonly 2 3/4" and back grooved if I was making a wider board I would not risk the cupping or humping especially on a contract
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