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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Newb question here.

I just got an MLCS Phenolic Table, fence, and aluminum plate.

I am coming from a janky aluminum Bosch table that was about as smooth as 150grit sandpaper.

Anyway, I find it odd that the plate just sits in the table. There is also play in both x and y axis which I’m assuming I shim?

I’ve noticed most manufacturers provide leveling and attachment screws to their plates. This MLCS setup only has leveling screws.

Should I drill and tap some bolts to lock the plate to the table? Or just shim the play and make some dust?

Any advice appreciated.
 

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Theo
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Made my own table, and the router plates. The plates are 1/2" plywood, and just sit in place, router holds them down. No play, no shimming.
 

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snuggly fitted to the receiving hole they just sit there and leveled..
 

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Hello N/A and welcome to the forums...
We're happy you found us...

We've gathered together is a bunch of pertinent/relative information in this here link ... You should find everything (at least most) quite useful, a lot of help and get you off to a running start in the world of routers... Enjoy...

Do take some time and read the safety PDF's... PLEASE!!!
Blood and trips to the ER, we find, are very annoying... Not to mention – expensive...

We do welcome all questions on about any subject you can come up w/ too....
Not only that, we excel at spending your money...
 

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Welcome to the forum, we are glad you joined.

Most plates just sit in the hole. the weight of the router keeps them from shifting. They have small screws in the corners to level them. I think that it facilitates raising the router with plate attached to change the bits. If it were screwed down, then the screws would have to be removed each and every time a bit was changed,instead the whole thing is lifted out and set on top of the table.
Was the plate on the Bosch table screwed down?
Herb
 

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If the plate and hole are not close fit then usually there is a way to make it somewhat better. On my Jess Em lift the plate has an adjustable slider for both X and Y that you simply loosen to move and then tighten back snugly. This doesn't lock the plate in place but keeps sideways motions from happening. The weight of the lift and router keep the plate in the table base. I think this is what you're asking about. I don't see where the base plate vs the lift plate should be any different less the lift. Any yes, many plate have holes for screws but even the makers will tell you that they don't recommend using them as it isn't needed.

See here and here on my webpage and you'll see the corner holes (not used) and an adjustable slider. This image shows the wood rings I made for a tighter fit keeping in mind that my lift plate would not need to be lifted from the table to change bits. Hope this helps.

BTW, welcome to the forum.
 

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I've never bolted the plate down over 5 or 6 different tables now. Gravity does a fine job of holding it down. As mentioned the plate needs to be tight so that there is no side play and level with the table. Besides the weight of the router holding the plate down, when you rout something you are also pushing down on it so it isn't going anywhere.
 
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks everyone. This all makes sense, I’m gonna frequently being pulling out the plate/motor and gravity/downward workpiece pressure will keep it all in place.

I kind of wish I went full tilt on a jessem, but after a lot of table leveling and fence shimming, this little rig should work well for me for a while. Blows the doors off my Bosch.

Herb, yes, the Bosch plate bolts down.

Just routed my first stop dados and they came out awesome!

Joel
 

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If the plate and hole are not close fit then usually there is a way to make it somewhat better. On my Jess Em lift the plate has an adjustable slider for both X and Y that you simply loosen to move and then tighten back snugly. This doesn't lock the plate in place but keeps sideways motions from happening. The weight of the lift and router keep the plate in the table base. I think this is what you're asking about. I don't see where the base plate vs the lift plate should be any different less the lift. Any yes, many plate have holes for screws but even the makers will tell you that they don't recommend using them as it isn't needed.

See here and here on my webpage and you'll see the corner holes (not used) and an adjustable slider. This image shows the wood rings I made for a tighter fit keeping in mind that my lift plate would not need to be lifted from the table to change bits. Hope this helps.

BTW, welcome to the forum.
I tried to use those snuggers but they didn’t snug, so just made holes to secure my Jessem to the Bosch table.
 

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One of the reasons I don't bolt my plates down, besides not needing to, is because it makes changing bits much easier. It also makes initial height changes easier too even though I have above table adjusting capability.
 

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Rick
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I just legally changed my name from N/A to Joel.
Welcome to the forum Joel . I have nothing to add , as these guys got you covered .
But I thought I’d show you something in my 78 TransAm that you could relate to .
I’m heading back to 70’s as soon as I can figure out how to generate the 1.21 gigawatts needed to fire it back up again , as 2020 isn’t working out so well lol
 

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Joel

people here have much more experience than I do with router tables....that being said I have worked with shapers, mortisers and large panel cutting TS (what you probably call "euro style" table saw with long 3.5 m slide) and all i know is that fast moving things with lots of power are like cats - unexpected :)

if you must lift the insert plate to change bits (as opposed to using an extension and changing above table) I would simply lock the plate in place with 3~4 quarter turn wedges - something similar to a simple postbox lock that you can turn from above to close or open....

YMMV etc
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 · (Edited)
Brian, is your aluminum smooth on that Bosch? It looks way better than the one I had. I kid you not—it was so rough you could not slide wood across it. I wonder if I got a lemon. I thought about wet sanding it, but it also had about a 3/16” dip in the middle.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Welcome to the forum Joel . I have nothing to add , as these guys got you covered .
But I thought I’d show you something in my 78 TransAm that you could relate to .
I’m heading back to 70’s as soon as I can figure out how to generate the 1.21 gigawatts needed to fire it back up again , as 2020 isn’t working out so well lol
That’s incredible. You literally have a flux capacitor in your ride.

If you ever figure out how to generate 1.21 GW—Please take me with you.

“2020—Officially the longest year on record”
 
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