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post #1 of 35 (permalink) Old 05-31-2014, 01:09 PM Thread Starter
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Default Building a router table with adjustable height

Guys my dream router table needs to be adjustable height wise .
Was hoping to have a range around 24" when lowered and 38" when it's raised .
Not to sound like a broken record but the reason was as I need to be around 33"1/2 when I use it as an outfield table for my table saw , and 36" to 38" when routing . Going low would be nice when I'm building projects on it . So this table is to save real estate by being versatile.
I drew up a crude drawing in Photoshop to show you a new theory that I dreamt up .

My first idea was to use two linear actuators , one on each end , and have four drawer slides mounted vertically for guiding .

Now I have a new idea where I do a scissor action system , where as there's just a single actuator installed in between the two scissor areas that lifts it all , as opposed to having two actuators (one on each end) and an extra feed back controller to keep them in sync .
As you know if you had boards hinged on the one end and pivoting in the centre where they cross, that the other end would change it's distance , so I figure have the one end of the scissors attached to drawer slides , thus letting the distance change as it's scissoring .
There would be one scissor on each side of the table length wise . I was going to build the table approx 6' long and 32" wide . The picture only shows one side .
I hope the crude pic helps you understand my concept. The drawer slides are connected to the lower and upper parts of the table but I didn't portray that very well . A jack screw would work also , but I have always loved using linear actuators .
I really think this would make a very stable table when it's stopped and be self levelling .

Seeing as the scissor action would be in the way of the sides I was going to have the router lifts installed on the ends which would be wide open. If the table seems too sloppy side to side I guess additional vertical drawer slides could be incorporated.
Any opinions good or bad on my idea?

Last edited by RainMan 2.0; 05-31-2014 at 02:17 PM.
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post #2 of 35 (permalink) Old 05-31-2014, 02:45 PM
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Rick - the second idea - the one with the scissors, seems to me to be the more stable version. Your router table, when lifted to its max height, has to be stable in all directions - up and down, fore and aft, left and right, etc. When you are working with the router and pushing a board across the bit, you NEED rock solid stability.

That said, the scissors approach SEEMS best - but I am concerned about the drawer slide mechanism(s). These things have a bit of wobble built in - no matter how expensive a set you buy. So, referring to your drawing, the left side looks fine, but I would be concerned about the right side, IF you only used drawer slides for holding everything in place. But, if you added some mechanism to stabilize the unit when lifted, you should be fine. My other concern is how are you going to connect the scissor leg to the drawer slide? A bolt head could get in the way of the mechanism from closing properly.

Just some thoughts.

Rick
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post #3 of 35 (permalink) Old 05-31-2014, 03:05 PM Thread Starter
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Hey Rick like I say it's a rather crude drawing . The scissor end would be secured to a horizontal board which has the drawer slider mounted to it . So essentially two boards would be sliding together almost normally , other than the one would have the scissor attached to it .
Maybe it's back to four linear actuators lol . Like you say , she's gotta be stable.
Another crude drawing .it doesn't show the way the slides would really be connected to the scissors.
I think your right about stability though . This may be a wash
I was thinking if the scissor parts were made of a few layers of 2by6 's that they might be fairly resistant to side to side deflection. As mentioned other sliders could be incorporated vertically to help with stability also .


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post #4 of 35 (permalink) Old 05-31-2014, 03:27 PM
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Your second picture is what I thought you would be doing - so now you have confirmed that.

Throwing thoughts on the table - in lieu of drawer slides, what if you were to put a solid rod, threaded at both ends, thru some slotted wood at the lower and again at the upper ends of the sliding ends of the scissors? This could even be galvanized pipe. A bit of lithium grease and a hard stop on the inside (once up) would provide a solid fixture, I think. The scissored legs would have to be essentially one piece or cross braced to maintain true parallel movement so it doesn't rack.

Again - just 2 cents worth - but when I build things to work with in the shop, I build stout.
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post #5 of 35 (permalink) Old 05-31-2014, 05:02 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by rickjb View Post
Your second picture is what I thought you would be doing - so now you have confirmed that.

Throwing thoughts on the table - in lieu of drawer slides, what if you were to put a solid rod, threaded at both ends, thru some slotted wood at the lower and again at the upper ends of the sliding ends of the scissors? This could even be galvanized pipe. A bit of lithium grease and a hard stop on the inside (once up) would provide a solid fixture, I think. The scissored legs would have to be essentially one piece or cross braced to maintain true parallel movement so it doesn't rack.

Again - just 2 cents worth - but when I build things to work with in the shop, I build stout.
Your idea is better . I went to homedepot and the carpenter didn't like my idea at all , says those slides are not rated for anywheres near what I'm doing .
So I'm putting the kibosh on this idea .
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post #6 of 35 (permalink) Old 05-31-2014, 05:05 PM Thread Starter
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I'm kinda liking this now . Just gotta find me one of these contraptions . At lordco he figures it's an ATV jack .save me a whole lot of headaches if it's stable enough .
But tell you the truth I think it's coming down to a torsion box . Do multiple layers of boxes I guess. No stability issues whatsoever



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post #7 of 35 (permalink) Old 05-31-2014, 07:19 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by rickjb View Post
Your second picture is what I thought you would be doing - so now you have confirmed that.

Throwing thoughts on the table - in lieu of drawer slides, what if you were to put a solid rod ,threaded at both ends, thru some slotted wood at the lower and again at the upper ends of the sliding ends of the scissors? This could even be galvanized pipe. A bit of lithium grease and a hard stop on the inside (once up) would provide a solid fixture, I think. The scissored legs would have to be essentially one piece or cross braced to maintain true parallel movement so it doesn't rack.

Again - just 2 cents worth - but when I build things to work with in the shop, I build stout.
Just wanted to mention that my first idea was to use four threaded rods with sprockets on them and have a chain that turned all 4 at once . No synchronization issues and would be as sturdy as anything . However , try finding acme threaded rods that except a sprocket . I tried and found a few but nothing great .
I may kibosh wood working and buy a dirt bike . It sucks breaking bones at 53 , but it is what it is
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post #8 of 35 (permalink) Old 05-31-2014, 08:14 PM
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Rick, I don't know if you have a Harbor Freight up there in Canada, but you can get one of those jacks there. You can also order from Harbor Freight.com. 1000 lb. Capacity Hydraulic Table Cart
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post #9 of 35 (permalink) Old 05-31-2014, 08:17 PM
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After looking at that jack further, that's exactly the one that you see in your picture. Looks like he took the wheels off and slid his base lumber right where the wheel use to be. Hmmm, I'm kinda liking this myself....
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post #10 of 35 (permalink) Old 05-31-2014, 08:28 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by N'awlins77 View Post
After looking at that jack further, that's exactly the one that you see in your picture. Looks like he took the wheels off and slid his base lumber right where the wheel use to be. Hmmm, I'm kinda liking this myself....
Good call , I swear your right!
This would be easily worth buying for what I want . Now the bad news , I'm in Canada

I also wonder how solid it feels when it's in the raised position ? I could make it so it's 24" high when it's at its lowest , then it would probably get to 38" with ease .
There's a store in the US just below me . I'm going to see if they stock them

Update : nothing in cour daleane

Last edited by RainMan 2.0; 05-31-2014 at 09:39 PM.
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