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I'm looking to build a router table out of a counter top. It's already laminated. Any suggestions on how to build it would be a great help. What to reinforce it with. How to build the base. Anything. Thanks
 

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Also, what router plate should I get that isn't really expensive
I made my own, out of 1/2" plywood.

You need to check the router table thread. Someone has the link handy I am sure.
 

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Building a router table isn't hard but more information would be good. How large a table do you want? Do you want it to have certain features like storage, dust collection, or be portable? The design I went with was taken from one of Norm Abram's builds and attached or you can download from here Ultimate Router Table while the original plan is here https://www.newyankee.com/product/deluxe-router-station/
 

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You can build a frame under it like a floor joist system that will support it well and is easy to build. A plate on front and rear and cross members between them. I like a pair of cross members as close to the plate opening as possible. That prevents the table sagging from the weight of the router. I would also add a solid wood rim around the edges to protect the laminate and hide the particle board.

Grizzly sells a router plate. Last time I bought one was $13. Lee Valley sells some too and I think lots of other outlets also have them for a wide range of prices.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Well it's only 3/4 inch thick. So I'm going to glue another 3/4 piece underneath it. It's already laminated. I'm going to build supports and legs for it. It's 21x32 1/2. I want to buy a router plate and install that. And probably just make some type of fence for it that I can clamp onto it.
 

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You can glue a matching size piece of MDF onto the bottom, which will help keep it flat. Get your plate first. I prefer aluminum, and with a twist lock insert so it's quick and easy to change bits. Once you have that, you will want to transfer the outline onto the laminate and cut that opening so it's a fairly snug fit, but not too tight (a PITA for removing the router). Then glue on the MDF or make a truss as suggested to help keep the laminate flat. If you use MDF, position it, draw an outline about a half inch smaller than the opening, then cut it out to create a "shelf", then glue the MDF on. I would not use contact cement for this, too easy to mess it up.

You need to set up some sort of leveling adjustment. You could do this with screws with the tips ground flat, but if you are going to put any screw in MDF, you have to pre drill. You could put in Tnuts and put in bolts with a lock not to hold the height, but it's far easier to buy a set of 4 leveling gadgets (pix) and mount them in the four corners.

Personally, I'd use the MDF rather than truss because I think it will be easier to mount on a table than a truss system. My TS outfeed table has a truss and it has stayed flat for more than a decade.

I like the idea of an enclosed cabinet, or one with drawers to the side of the opening for the router, and also below that opening.

Stick some time ago suggested leaving room for a "snorkle" that pulls fresh air up through the bottom of the router for better cooling and to reduce sawdust incursion into the router. I haven't done this because my table would have to be remade. But I really like the idea.

You can put a hinged door over the router opening, but I'd think seriously about making it with a glass or plactic window so you know when a cleanout is due.

Dust extraction under the table is usually done with a Y splitter behind the table with a larger opening through the back into the router chamber. You must also have a way to let air into that chamber or there will be no air flow to carry the sawdust away. I'd bring air into the chamber through the same channel the snorkle runs through. You could also place a filter over that snorkle opening if you are a fuss budget about dust collection.

Your fence should also have a 2.5 inch dust collection port attached just behind the bit. That will help pull sawdust up and away from your router. I know Rockler makes a little port like this and I'm sure other makers have them too. My experience is that you want ALL of your DC connectors and hoses to be one brand. 4 inches isn't 4 inches from manufacturer to another. Parts are NOT interchangeable. I only have Rockler store access.

The diagram shows the layering.
 

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I’ve never doubled a table thickness yet in about 40 years and never needed to. The frame under eliminates the need and even doubled the top can sag if the open span is wide enough. The frame also makes adding legs easy. You stick them in a corner and screw in from both sides and they’re solid. Leave about a 2” overhang on all sides for clamping the fence too. Lots of us have used a good straight piece of 2x or plywood for a fence to get by until we felt like making something better. Sometimes that takes years to happen because if it’s working okay the way it is then other jobs take priority.
 

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The second layer also makes it easy to form a lip to hold the plate. Just my take on it. I think you'd likely be better off making a cabinet type carcus to hold the top, it is easy to build and very solid and lends itself to drawers and door access to the router. Of course, I tend to overbuild on most projects, and I like that thickness...and I have a Triton, which isn't a lightweight. Definitely Trusses will do the trick as well, although fussbudget me, ran the outfeed table trusses through a jointer before assembly.
 

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I made my own, out of 1/2" plywood.

You need to check the router table thread. Someone has the link handy I am sure.
Hi Joat I also have a router table top made of plywood and am thinking of putting bee's wax to make it easeier for stock to slide on it. I'm hestant on doing so as I don't want to be making a mistake that will have negative effects that I have not thought of. Any pros and cons I'm not knowledgable as of yet. What have you applied?
 

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Do i router the opening for the plate first and then glue the MDF on it? Wouldn't I have to cut an opening in the MDF for the router too?
Yup. Cut the bottom layer smaller to form about a half inch lip on which the plate will sit. Get some of Kreg's plate levelers so you can easily level the top and the plate, I think they're about $25 for a set of four.


399102
 

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Hi Joat I also have a router table top made of plywood and am thinking of putting bee's wax to make it easeier for stock to slide on it. I'm hestant on doing so as I don't want to be making a mistake that will have negative effects that I have not thought of. Any pros and cons I'm not knowledgable as of yet. What have you applied?
I suggest you consider add on a layer of laminate. Fairly easy to do. Don't try to cut out the opening through the top layer first, and use a piece of laminate that's a little larger than your top. You'll use a flush trim bit to trim off the excess later.

You use contact cement on the top of the table, and the underside of the laminate. I prefer spray on, easier to get an even coat. Do not just stick them together because you'll get air bubbles. The best way is to get some dowels or even sticks, at least half an inch thick. Let the adhesive dry completely. Then lay the dowels or sticks across the top of the table. If the contact cement is dry, they won't stick. Place them about 6 inches apart with one centered. Make sure the laminate cement is also dry, then carefully place it onto the dowels. If it's oversized, it's easy to make sure it covers all areas of the top.

Get a J roller, carefully remove the center dowel and apply the roller dead center. Roll the top as evenly as possible, from the center out. If you get an air bubble, it can be removed through the back by very carefully using a small drill bit to tap the pocket. That's tricky, so use the greatest of care to roll center out and up and down.

Once the center is down bubble free, remove the next dowel out on one side, use the roller again starting in the center, working outward toward the dowel you just removed. Remove the dowel on the other side of center and repeat. Keep doing this all the way to the edges. If you are careful, it will be very flat.

Then you can trim off the excess around the edges, cutting close, but not quite all the way to the edge. The trim bit will do the final cut perfectly. Drill a hole in the center near the inside edge of the opening and use the trim bit to cut away all the excess.

This will give you a wonderful surface that will move your workpiece smoothly.

If you apply wax, it will be a temporary fix at best, and your contact cement probably won't stick
Here's a video that shows how, but not on a router table top.
 

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G'day @Gig's , welcome to the forum.
 
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