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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-04-2004, 06:06 PM Thread Starter
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Default Table Fence Question

The more I contemplate this question the more I confuse myself, which is not hard at my stage in life

I searched the archives and did not really see an answer to my delima that satisfied my confusion, so I thought I'd throw this out and attempt to have it claified.

When setting up the fence on my table, how do I know for sure that both the outfeed and the infeed ends are in exact (straight line) alignment with the bit? Is this something you measure at each end of the fence to the front side of the table or is there a more scientific method to assure it is exactally perpendicular to the bit at both ends of the fence? The inexpensive table I have has ruler markings, but I do not trust them in all cases.

I know this is another dumb and elimentary question, but I hope it will help others as well as myself.

Many Thanks to you fellas for your patience in helping us Newbies.

Last edited by Bob N; 12-04-2004 at 06:42 PM.
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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-04-2004, 07:45 PM
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First I am assuming that you have a one-piece fence…. If not then you need to buy or make one as it just takes to much effort to set up the two piece type (this is what I had on my first router table and it was a pain),

Actual this is a good question. I have seen people trying to adjust the fence to little marks on the table, a little on this side a little on that side.... For a table saw getting the fence parallel with the blade is a must, however no mater how you turn the fence on a router or drill press you will always be right. You will be at a tangent to the bit, which is what you want. Now that you know that it is very easy to set up a fence even on a less then expensive router table.

The next part of your question depends on what operation you are trying to do. If you want to do a little round over you might just eye ball the fence and tighten it down.

If you want a full profile on a bit with a bearing on top you would want to isolate the bearing. It this case you get the fence in eye ball position then tighten the out-feed side. Using a brass bar (like Rick and Bob) or some other straight edge you put the bar across the bearing and move the in-feed side so the bearing just doesn’t turn as you slide the bar back and forth. Tighten and check again until you’ve got it.

If you were making a cut lets say 1” from the edge with a straight bit, then you would measure from the bit to the fence (if you want the cutter centered on 1” then measure to the center of the bit etc.) Again tighten the out-feed side, measure again and adjust the in feed side to the 1”, when you are on the money tighten the in-feed side. Check again and start routing.

I hope this helped.

Ed
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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-04-2004, 08:18 PM Thread Starter
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Ed,

Again you have kicked my brain into gear. I guess it never dawned on me that the fence is in straight line no matter what the angle... duh

Yes, I have a one piece fence on my current factory built table and plan to build my next table myself. I am just trying to get some of these things straight in my mind before proceeding to deeper waters.

You have been so helpful more than once with my novice questions.

Many Thanks....
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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-04-2004, 09:50 PM
 
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Sounds like my old Craftsman table and fence. Don't feel bad I struggled with this same thing until it dawned on me that the one piece fence was always in line unless I pushed the little plastic insert meant for edging out.
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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-04-2004, 10:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DONALD
Sounds like my old Craftsman table and fence. Don't feel bad I struggled with this same thing until it dawned on me that the one piece fence was always in line unless I pushed the little plastic insert meant for edging out.
One thing about the old Craftsman table was that any step you took was a step up. I still have mine, I have a the old Craftsman rosette maker attached in case I want to "turn" out some rosettes again someday. Oh those were the days, HSS bits, no Router Workshop to watch, no Norm........

Ed
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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-04-2004, 10:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob N
Ed,

Again you have kicked my brain into gear. I guess it never dawned on me that the fence is in straight line no matter what the angle... duh

Yes, I have a one piece fence on my current factory built table and plan to build my next table myself. I am just trying to get some of these things straight in my mind before proceeding to deeper waters.

You have been so helpful more than once with my novice questions.

Many Thanks....
Please don't feel bad about the fence question, I have a feeling a few other people here have not yet seen the light yet either. Well, maybe they have now that they read your question.

A lot of people have questions but some are not yet at the point of asking, for what ever reason, you are! So keep asking and maybe you will be helping others to feel free to also join in and ask or answer. We still have not heard from a lot of members and I know a lot of them know more then I do and could teach us a thing or two...... if they would post.

Anyway, keep up the good work.

Ed
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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-06-2004, 02:30 AM
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Bob, to carry your question one step further consider a home made fence with 2 sliding faces on it. Now it is possible that the 2 faces dont align properly. The fence I built was like this. When making my first trial pass using the fence my wood caught on the outfeed side. Perhaps the main fence warped a bit, maybe one of the faces? More likely when I set my inserts into the sliding faces they were off a tiny bit. With a good light source and a known good straight edge it is possible to shim behind the sliding faces so they are even. Once you have made this adjustment you are "in like Flint". There are pictures of the front and back of one of my fences in the thread: "To buy or build". Fence plan by Shopnotes. Hardware from Rockler.

Mike
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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-06-2004, 03:42 PM Thread Starter
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Mike,

Good thoughts passed along by you here. I do plan on building a router table a some point in the near future, and from what I am learning from the good people here will aid in my planning of this project.

Many Thanks for the input.

Bob
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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 11-18-2009, 08:25 AM
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Ed,

Again you have kicked my brain into gear. I guess it never dawned on me that the fence is in straight line no matter what the angle... duh

Many Thanks....
Of course, if you have a slot on your table for featherboards, miter gauges, and such, you'll want the fence parallel to that. And keeping the fence square wrt all table features is helpful if you are doing something like routing a tapered leg, where the workpiece is held at an angle to the fence, with a wedge-shaped spacer or similar.

Thomas D. Shepard, Sc. D.
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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 11-18-2009, 01:41 PM
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Alignment with a miter gauge is important for holding a 90* angle but, since a featherboard is put in one place and not moved, unless it is hooked to some fixture that doesn't have an adjustable angle, you can correct for featherboard misalignment.

A featherboard can be simply attached to the table at one point and most have a slot in them for distance from hold down and the board can swivel around the Tee bolt, before the bolt(s) is (are) tightened for use.

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