Planning to build a RT--save a newby from himself - Router Forums
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post #1 of 50 (permalink) Old 02-10-2012, 06:06 PM Thread Starter
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Default Planning to build a RT--save a newby from himself

I'm thinking through options for a shop-built RT. I've never owned a router before, and could use some advice and/or critique of my thinking.

I expect to use it for projects smaller than furniture, if that helps. Also I want to put a priority on dust control.

For the router I'm looking at the 12 A units. I started considering kits with the following routers:

DeWalt 618
Bosch 1617
PC 892

I scratched the DeWalt since it has no height adjustment from the table top. I want to simplify this first table, and not having to buy a lift seems like an advantage. With the other 2, the PC costs a bit more, and I'm wondering if its worth the difference. Any handheld routing I do for now will be done using the same router.

All table styles seem to have a dust port on the fence, but do I understand correctly that enclosing the router in a box and putting a dust port there also will improve dust control? If so, is it a big difference? It seems like the box idea would dictate a floor standing design. I've seen pictures of Norm's design, and I think its too big for my space. A smaller floor standing design could be just the right size.

A bench-top table strikes me as too high. Mounted to a contractor saw is perhaps what I will do if I don't use the dust control box idea. Having selected a table style, I'll be looking for plans, so if you know of plans that you would recommend, I would appreciate knowing how to find a copy (bought or free, doesn't really matter).

I will certainly appreciate all input generated by this query.

-Roger
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post #2 of 50 (permalink) Old 02-10-2012, 06:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rogimoto View Post
I'm thinking through options for a shop-built RT. I've never owned a router before, and could use some advice and/or critique of my thinking.

I expect to use it for projects smaller than furniture, if that helps. Also I want to put a priority on dust control.

For the router I'm looking at the 12 A units. I started considering kits with the following routers:

DeWalt 618
Bosch 1617
PC 892

I scratched the DeWalt since it has no height adjustment from the table top. I want to simplify this first table, and not having to buy a lift seems like an advantage. With the other 2, the PC costs a bit more, and I'm wondering if its worth the difference. Any handheld routing I do for now will be done using the same router.

All table styles seem to have a dust port on the fence, but do I understand correctly that enclosing the router in a box and putting a dust port there also will improve dust control? If so, is it a big difference? It seems like the box idea would dictate a floor standing design. I've seen pictures of Norm's design, and I think its too big for my space. A smaller floor standing design could be just the right size.

A bench-top table strikes me as too high. Mounted to a contractor saw is perhaps what I will do if I don't use the dust control box idea. Having selected a table style, I'll be looking for plans, so if you know of plans that you would recommend, I would appreciate knowing how to find a copy (bought or free, doesn't really matter).

I will certainly appreciate all input generated by this query.

-Roger
Hi Roger - Welcome to the forum
Sounds like you have already put a lot of thought into this. Any of those routers will work fine for you. I have a small shop in my basement and I have the NYY style table on wheels. It moves around a lot but it's worth it to me to have it readily availabe rather than being drug out and assembled as my original bench top table required. Building it into your table saw wing could be a viable solution for you. Check the sticky, "Wanted - pictures of your router table", at the top of this forum for a ton of inspiration

John Schaben

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post #3 of 50 (permalink) Old 02-10-2012, 07:10 PM
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Roger, I too am a newbie and looking for plans like your self so I will be watching this thread closely.
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post #4 of 50 (permalink) Old 02-10-2012, 09:16 PM
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A dust port on your fence is all you need. I built a split fence and boxed in the area behind and above the bit opening and drilled a hole in the back for my 1 1/4" vac hose nozzle. I catch about 95% of all the dust made. A well designed box may equal that but is unlikely to surpass it and a poorly designed one can do much worse as well as make your router run hot. Most of the dust you make will be above the table. No enclosure makes running cords and popping the router out for bit changes much easier. No box also means you can make a bench top table which takes up a lot less space.
I also advocate putting the router to one side of the table instead of the middle. If you are working with narrow pieces you can put the fence on the wide side which keeps your work close and easy to reach. If you have wide pieces you can put the fence on the narrow side leaving more table for support. Just one opinion out of many.

Someone I consider a master woodworker once told me that a master woodworker is not someone who never makes mistakes. He is someone who is able to cover them up so that no one can tell.
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post #5 of 50 (permalink) Old 02-10-2012, 10:33 PM
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Read the sticky threads at the top of each section. They are packed with good information. Instructions for building the table top are there. Roger, the Router Workshop table is no longer available but you can build it yourself; Plans are $4.00.
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post #6 of 50 (permalink) Old 02-11-2012, 08:20 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by jschaben View Post
Hi Roger - Welcome to the forum
Sounds like you have already put a lot of thought into this. Any of those routers will work fine for you. I have a small shop in my basement and I have the NYY style table on wheels. It moves around a lot but it's worth it to me to have it readily availabe rather than being drug out and assembled as my original bench top table required. Building it into your table saw wing could be a viable solution for you. Check the sticky, "Wanted - pictures of your router table", at the top of this forum for a ton of inspiration
John,

Thanks for you comments. I'll take a closer look at that design and its dimensions. It's hard to go wrong with Norm, I'm sure.

Do you mean it moves around a lot as in you relocate it often, or as in it wobbles when you use it? Are the wheels part of the original design, or was that a modification?

Thanks,
Roger
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post #7 of 50 (permalink) Old 02-11-2012, 08:54 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Mike View Post
Read the sticky threads at the top of each section. They are packed with good information. Instructions for building the table top are there. Roger, the Router Workshop table is no longer available but you can build it yourself; Plans are $4.00.
Thanks Mike. OT: I got a lot from your sticky about a minimalist table design. I look forward to the companion thread about a fence to go with it!

I do like the looks of the RW table. On Oakpark's website, it looks like they are closing out a lot of parts they sell for that table. Do you think it makes more sense to buy those things while I can or just get them somewhere else to begin with? I'm referring to the fence, plate, starting pins, etc.

-Roger
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post #8 of 50 (permalink) Old 02-11-2012, 09:29 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Cherryville Chuck View Post
A dust port on your fence is all you need. I built a split fence and boxed in the area behind and above the bit opening and drilled a hole in the back for my 1 1/4" vac hose nozzle. I catch about 95% of all the dust made. A well designed box may equal that but is unlikely to surpass it and a poorly designed one can do much worse as well as make your router run hot. Most of the dust you make will be above the table. No enclosure makes running cords and popping the router out for bit changes much easier. No box also means you can make a bench top table which takes up a lot less space.
I also advocate putting the router to one side of the table instead of the middle. If you are working with narrow pieces you can put the fence on the wide side which keeps your work close and easy to reach. If you have wide pieces you can put the fence on the narrow side leaving more table for support. Just one opinion out of many.
Thanks Charles,

Knowing this gives me a lot more flexibility in choosing a table style.
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post #9 of 50 (permalink) Old 02-11-2012, 09:48 AM
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Hi Roger


Just a butt in post on my part

If you buy the plates from OP get both of them ,the small and the big hole one, once you cut the hole out for the plate in your table top you are stuck with it and the OP is the only one that will fit that hole.

And it's best to have two routers to use the router table unless you don't mind switching base plate all the time, the small hole one can only take on a 1 1/4" OD bit safe and the big hole one can only take on 2 1/2" OD bit the norm.

So to say think down the road b/4 you get that setup and made the OP table system.it's setup as proprietary system for the most part.

Hope this helps a little bit with your quest.

I should post a picture or two of the rework I had to do to the plate to get it work on my table but I think you get it without any pictures..

==


Quote:
Originally Posted by rogimoto View Post
Thanks Mike. OT: I got a lot from your sticky about a minimalist table design. I look forward to the companion thread about a fence to go with it!

I do like the looks of the RW table. On Oakpark's website, it looks like they are closing out a lot of parts they sell for that table. Do you think it makes more sense to buy those things while I can or just get them somewhere else to begin with? I'm referring to the fence, plate, starting pins, etc.

-Roger



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post #10 of 50 (permalink) Old 02-11-2012, 10:35 AM Thread Starter
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Bob,

Thanks for butting in. I'm looking for any and all feedback from you experienced guys and gals.

The info about the plate is definitely valuable. If most of their stuff is proprietary, and the plate is one of them, that will cause me to go elsewhere.

I may still go with their design for the cabinets, and put a custom top on it.
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