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One problem all the sleds have is that they rob you of available cutting height on your bits. Some of the shortest ones, typically 1/4" but some of the 1/2" ones too, you don't have much to spare. I also like using my fence part of the time to help with depth control and getting the fence parallel to the T track while getting the amount of bit exposure you need can take time to get right. That's why lots of us just use a square piece of panel board as a pusher block. That way the fence could be sitting 45* to the table and it wouldn't matter.

I've also built a type sled that is nothing but two boards joined in a right angle Tee and I just slide it along the edge of the table. You can drill a hole in the arm to put the nose of an F clamp in if you want clamping capability. There's no lost bit height either way. There are pictures of what I described here in post #11: https://www.routerforums.com/jigs-f...d-suitable-triton-rta-300-router-table-2.html..

If you really like the sled then buy it but there are other ways to get the job done.
 

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I have a Rockler branded one that is almost identical. The coping sled sure makes cope and stick cabinet door rails easy to make. I got a set of Frued adjustable style and rail bits. The bits are in the shaker profile. I had to add a piece of 1/2" plywood to the bottom because the Frued bits were cutting into the bottom of my sled. My other fixed classic bits never cut the sled. The Frued bits can be adjusted from 5/8" to 1.25" stock. So there is a lot of bit there.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
GDon - I too have some Shaker bits for stiles and rails to learn how to use - hoping this sled makes it a productive approach possible.

Harry - after you create a profile cut on a backer piece, you line up the workpiece with the backer /profile board for each cut - pretty simple really. Or at least I'll find out!
 

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Yes but for long pieces that will pass the bit opening I use these quickly made pushers made from scrap ends.
 

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I have a Woodpecker coping sled I got several years ago and have never used it. There are other, easier methods for doing this job that I learned from watching Marc Sommerfeld's videos (free on YouTube). It's a beautiful jig, and if anyone wants to buy it cheap ($40, plus UPS shipping), PM me.
 

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I've got this jig as well and got the Freud stile & rail bits to use on cabinet doors last fall. Worked great and I'm really impressed with the Freud bits
 

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By the way, Peachtree is a good woodworking store. I've been using them for at least 10 years. Their double sided tape ("double stick") is the best I've found. I go through it pretty fast.
 

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Here's a sketch of a quick and easy coping sled - just need to add a sacrificial backer between the part and the fence. Shows 1/2" MDF for the base, but I don't see any reason that it needs to be any thicker than 1/4" tempered hardboard as the 3/4" plywood double will keep it flat, just have it sitting on the table when you engage the toggle clamp. Using the 1/4" hardboard will minimize the amount needed to extend the cutter.
 

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I too have looked at Peachtree's and Rockler's sled and I keep looking at them except I always come up with using Cherryville's method of a piece of squared wood as a push block/backer board. I have always been concerned at using to light a material for the base and too thick preventing proper bit height.

So for now I'm gonna stick with the backer board but am anxious at your findings after using it...

Thanks for sharing...and sparking my rethinking...
 

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I was actually looking for this file when I posted the previous one as I recalled something about deflection of the thin base. Found the file which shows a method of stiffening up the base to eliminate deflection.

One drawback I see is that you can't see the end being coped - looks like a solution would be to reduce the width of the front top board and rabbet in an acrylic strip which rides against the face of the fence.
 

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I was actually looking for this file when I posted the previous one as I recalled something about deflection of the thin base. Found the file which shows a method of stiffening up the base to eliminate deflection.

One drawback I see is that you can't see the end being coped - looks like a solution would be to reduce the width of the front top board and rabbet in an acrylic strip which rides against the face of the fence.

I like the idea...thanks...

Does it seem that the piece to be routed is limited in size to the space between the base and the stiffeners...?

Gonna have to think about your suggestion...thanks
 
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I have the Rockler sled (blue vs black base). It is fantastic. I had thought of making one but for the price it is complete and sled base is flat . It is safer and worth the money and is far cheaper than a trip to ER.
 

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I just remembered why I've not bought one (Peachtree or Rockler)...(yeah, I'm retired...I'm allowed to forget $hit)

Any time you want to route the same profile around all 4 edges of, say, a 1x3...can't use it on the end grain sides without adjusting the height of the bit
Same for any of the lock joints, ie, lock rabbet, lock miter, lock joint, etc...
Same for any bit that wants a horizontal and vertical cut (like the lock miter)

...there are more examples...

So I think I'll stick with the backer board like Cherryville and Harry described...

...just thinkin' out loud...no offense to anyone who uses it successfully...
 

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I like the idea...thanks...

Does it seem that the piece to be routed is limited in size to the space between the base and the stiffeners...?

Gonna have to think about your suggestion...thanks
I would think that the most common use of a coping sled is cutting the profiles on the ends of cabinet door rails. For larger parts, the use of a "pusher" as described in earlier posts would be the better option.

A base of 1/4" thickness doesn't create too much of a problem as far as projection of the router bit above the table, you just have to compensate for that thickness when using a set-up block.

Woodpeckers at one time offered a sled that fitted on top of the part being coped - I thought this a great idea and purchased one. Unfortunately, the design didn't adequately clamp the part and it was difficult to get good consistent cuts, and Woodpeckers actually supplied a replacement (higher cost) assembly at no charge. I still have that first sled and occasionally look at it to see if any easy idea pops up for correcting the deficiencies, but not so far.


The one idea I had, but never really followed up on, was to modify the clamping block by adding a second piece on top of the sled connected to it through the slot and drilling an access slot at the left end of the slot for the head of a clamp. It would need a second hole at the right, where the handle currently sits. The upper layer of the clamp block would have to be guided by strips on either side of it that were attached to the top of the sled. I think that would work, but the replacement one works pretty good and I never followed up on the idea as I could see some limitations to the size of the part that could be coped.
 

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Take time to check out Marc Sommerfeld on how he uses blocks to cut rails and stiles and in particular, the ends. The method is simple and it means you can use matched set bits which you don't have to keep adjusting for height.

Part 1 \\
Part 2 \\
 
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