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Hi all,
Im planning on making my own simple router table with just a plywood top. I have a Bosch 1617 router set and wondering what thickness I can make the top so the screws will still fit? The screws dont seem all that long and I'm worried I cant do more than 1/4" plywood... with that I'm not to sure of the ability of the ply to hold much weight.. ie the router itself.

Or can I just get longer screws from the home centers? Dont want to ruin any threads on the router
 

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You are far better off using the $13 Grizzly mounting plate and 3/4" Baltic birch plywood. This combination will be trouble free for years. Once you remove the sub base plate on your 1617 you will see two mounting patterns. The smaller 4 screw pattern is the Bosch standard with 4 mm screws. The three round mounting bosses are the PC style mount. I posted Sticky threads on how to install the plate and how to mount your router correctly.
 

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Theo
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There is a thread on here about homemade router tables. I suggest you check that out before you start.

My table has a 1/2" plywood top, and my router is screwed to a 1/2" plywood plate - bought screws. But I also have a spider web of chunks of 2X4 under the top, so it is flat, and stays flat. The router plate rests on parts of the 2X4 chunks for support. Without proper support under the top, it will pretty much be guaranteed to bend - unless you glue several layers of top material together, and I think that would be more bother than it's worth.
 

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If you get longer screws remember that you must match both diameter and thread pitch. In metric sizes thread pitch is measured as the distance in millimeters between two ridges. If the screws are 4mm then they are probably 0.7mm but there is also a fine thread 4mm which is 0.5 mm per thread.
 
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You will want to be able to match the hole in the top up to the bit that you are using otherwise you will problem. You don't want to put a 3/4" hole in the top only to find that a bit doesn't fit and you have to make the hole larger. As Mike suggested get a plate and make your top thick enough that it won't sag. If you can find a used office furniture place near you ask if they have any old modular work tops they want to get rid of. A 4' desk top makes a perfect table top.
 

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My first router table was just a 2 ft square piece of 3/4 birch plywood with a 2" hole a little off center for the router bit, plus the mounting holes around it to attach a 1 hp fixed base router underneath. For a fence, I had a 2 X 4 that was a little longer than the router table, with the face edge jointed flat and a notch in the middle of it to go around the router bit. Two C clamps held this fence in place and two more C clamps held the table to the edge of my work bench or saw horse. It was portable, very flexible, and was easy to use for most routing chores, but now that I have two REAL router tables, I don't ever want to go back. It was a great and very cheap way to get started, and very easy to make, but the features of a full size router table and fence make them so much easier to use.

If money is tight, go with something like my first DIY router table. If you can afford better, go with one of the many better router tables on the market. Inserts will let you adjust the bit opening to the ideal size, A thin, but strong plate will give you more bit depth adjustment, vacuum attachments will keep your shop and lungs cleaner, micro adjustment of the fence will get you more accuracy, etc. All this makes it easier to get good results. Much can be done with a DIY table like I had, but accuracy will be significantly limited.

Charley
 
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