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Router Table Fences

7296 Views 12 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  curiousgeorge
There have been a few recent questions about router table fences so I thought I would post a few comments. For those looking to buy a fence I would suggest building your own. In doing so you will be able to include all the bells and whistles you would pay through the nose for on the commercial models. All you have to do is look around at all the fences available for sale and do a search on this forum to look at what others have done. Bj has some great ideas as well as a lot of others on this forum. You will find some things not available on the commercial fences.
I have included some pics of the fence I made. It is just some 3/4" MDF for the base and fence with 1/2" MDF sub-fences with T-slots cut in the back to make them adjustable. I put a T-track above the sub-fences to accept stop blocks, finger guards, etc. The whole thing was assembled with pocket screws and the base is simply held to the table with clamps. Then, of course, no fence is complete without some kind of dust collection system.


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Nice George. Simple but functional. You can even make a second left side with some laminate on it or drop in a couple playing cards, and use it as a jointer. Cool.
Thanks Dave,
The left sub-fence bottom is chamfered for that exact purpose and later I plan on using Bj's idea of a T&G insert for specific bits. There are any number of things you can do with replaceable sliding sub-fences.
Nice looking set-up George but the absence of sawdust suggests that it's only for you to sit and admire,prove me wrong and post some pics. Harry
Thanks Harry,
I have been working on the table for about a month and just finished the fence late yesterday evening... you should have seen it before I cleaned up and took the pics. In the winter it's sometimes hard to work in a freezing garag... er shop and yeah you got me on the sit and admire. I enjoy doing that almost as much as the work/play itself. The top isn't attached to the cabinet yet and just got the DC hooked up, but I have been using it... I made the drawers and fronts with it.
PS, If you look close in the first pic you can see some dust I missed just in front of the plate. :cool:
Hi George

I see you are using two clamps to hold the fence in place ,they do work well but a pain to use.
Here's a tip,,,,,, :) :) and a easy way to lock it down.

Put a slot in the fence base and one hole on the other end and use it as a Swing Fence, it's a easy way to lock it down and easy fix.
90% of the items you do on the router table will use the fence right next to the bit or to say right in front of the edge of the bit.
But you can still use the clamps when you put in a dado that's about 6" from the fence.
When you want to change the bit you just unscrew the one on the right and just unscrew the one on the left just a bit and swing it back out of the way,make the change and pull it back and lock it down.
You can make a stop block for the back side of the fence so you can get it right back to the same spot when using match set of router bits and the same bearing on the bit.
Right back to the zero point on the fence.

Or if you are poping the router table base out to change the bit like Bob & Rick do this also works great for that also,just slide the fence back and pop it out then pull back and lock it down all without any hand screw clamps :)

See small drawing below quick and easy one to install and cheap.

Just a Note about the Tee Nuts,,,I aways cut the sharp point off the tee nuts and glue them into place,this way they will not drop out of place and the ponts will not split the wood. (if I recall the bit size for the 5/16" tee nut is a " N " drill bit and must be right for the barrel size for the tee nut) you want it just slide in with out nailing it will a big hammer, just a small tap should do it.

Plus a snapshot or two on the fence I have on one of the router tables ,I use a snap pin on the right side of the fence, it's spring loaded and I just pull it up and turn it a 1/4 of a turn and it locks in place then I can just swing the fence out to the left side and do what I need to do then just pull it back and let the pin drop back into the hole, I also have two holes on the right side of the table top so I use the BIG bits like the 3 5/8" panel bits, the 2nd hole moves the fence back about 1 1/4" from center.

Bj :)


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Golly, I never gave it much thought!

After watching the Router Workshop so much & seeing how simple it really was, I just grabbed a piece of oak that had a nice straight edge and started using it... just like Bob & Rick do...! :) :) :)

All of these mentioned, also look good to me... :)

I guess it depends how "Pure" you want to be?
I noticed the Shopsmith in one of the pics... I have my grandfathers old 500 with the jointer and old scroll/jig saw attachments. Do you use yours? I had to get mine basically re-built since it sat in an unheated basment for years, then at camp in a shed for a few more years before I got hold of it..
Thanks Bj,
Looks good to me. I will give the swing fence a try. I hope you don't mind if I saved a copy of your attach.
kenadian said:
I noticed the Shopsmith in one of the pics... I have my grandfathers old 500 with the jointer and old scroll/jig saw attachments. Do you use yours? I had to get mine basically re-built since it sat in an unheated basment for years, then at camp in a shed for a few more years before I got hold of it..
Hey kenadian,
Yeah, I use it a lot. I just got my 510 last Nov. and am still learning all the ins and outs. I wouldn't mind having the jointer and planer attachments but can't afford them right now. Shopsmith stuff aint cheap, as you probably know after refitting yours. Hope you are enjoying it. Happy sawdust to you.
You'er Welcome George

Yours free for the taking :).
The best way to save it to your HD, view it and then right click on it and select copy image or save as then just paste it to your folder on the desktop call Jigs. :)

Bj :)
Router fences and tables

Hi George, I like the pics of you're table, why don't more of the guys post actual photographs, as they say, a picture is worth a thousand words. I made my first router "table" in about 1975, it was an old radio chassis minus all components with a steel bar welded to the bottom so that it could be held in a vice. The router was a very basic Black and Decker. The fence was a 2" x 1/4" steel bar with 1/4" rods screwed into it to enable adjustment. At that time I hadn't seen a "real" router table and I did lots of work on it. I progressed to the first of the Triton tables which opened up a new world for me, and it was about this time that I met Template Tom and commenced routing lessons, so for a while the Triton saw few projects. However I became sufficiently router proficient to decide when an operation was best done with templates and when best to use the table so I progressed to the new version of the Triton which had a front sliding section which opened up lots of new possibilities so far as jigs were concerned. I eventually disposed of the Triton when I came across the heavy duty Chinese made table shown, complete with it's steel and aluminium hi-tech looking fence which turned out to be hopeless! The standard of my work deteriorated rapidly even after I made the two adjustable blocks at the top to reduce flexing. The first time this fence has seen the light of day was yesterday when I removed several years of dust to take a photo. I replaced it with the simple one shown, made from an old kitchen door! The height makes many operations a breeze and if the cut-out for the cutter needs to have zero clearance, I just clamp a sheet of thin MDF and pass the cutter through it. The photo. of the underside shows the simple modification to the height knob which makes for fast adjustment. I know that many of my posts are on the long side but I aim them at the guys (and gals) who are new to routing and I still recall the kind of questions that I had in the early days. Comments, even adverse ones are welcome so that I know which way to go on future posts. Harry


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Hi Harry,
It's not the length that counts, it's the contents. So if you think it will help somebody... bring it on.
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