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Discussion Starter #1
Hey, folks. Found this forum on the web. I joined in the hope of getting an answer to this question. I am building an entertainment center from plans in an old Woodworker magazine, and it calls for rabbeting an allowance 1/2" wide by 1/4" deep to set in the back panel of 1/4" ply. The rabbit will be in 3/4" oak ply stock. Do I rabbet with the plywood on edge or flat on the router table?

I am new to router work, although I have done lots of carpentry over the years, remodeling, putting in doors, taking out walls, etc. My experience is all in framing and simple finishing, and I'm now having to learn a new skill.

Thanks for the help (in advance.)
 

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There are actually several ways to make your cut with a router and you can use which ever is easiest for you. With a router set up in a table it is usually easier to lay the panel flat on the table and run it past the bit. If you have a small table it may be easier to run it through standing up. When you make vertical cuts on a panel you need to have a higher fence to support the wood and you need to clamp a finger board to the table to hold the panel securely against the fence.
You can also clamp your panel to a bench and use a fence attachment on your router with a straight bit, clamp a board to your panel to act as a fence and use a straight bit or use a rabbiting bit with a bearing to guide you along the edge. All of these methods are correct and the results are the same; a clean cut that requires no sanding.
 

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I'd pick the second one of your suggestions. The OP didn't mention how large the panel is but if it's too big for his table to slide horizontally then it might be too big to run over the bit vertically too. I usually try to do as much router work as possible on my large table but for some things I find I just have to use the router hand held. In this case using the router hand held with the router's guide fence, as you suggested, is the easiest approach by far. No feather board, tall fence, no struggling to keep the panel tight up against the fence. Yet another fine example of why I'm so glad I made my table larger than average. Why make a small table? Works for me anyway.

Bruce
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks to all who responded. 2 panels are 26x57, somewhat large and clumsy...and heavy. I decided to use their weight to work with me, and did them on the table flat. It worked fine. I tried using the featherboard from my table saw on some test pieces, and that worked fine too. Again, thanks all. I'll keep checking back with this forum. It's great.
 
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