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Table SIZE question

1841 Views 3 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  jerrymayfield
I've been looking at the various table designs and ... well... my current table is a quick build and sits on my Workmate so I'll be building at LEAST a base (unless that bathroom vanity I'm taking out looks like it will work..... that's another story...)

Anyways... most of the tables I see are ... well ... smallish. I mean, a BIG one is 32" long. Mine is 48" currently by 24" deep. I was thinking of making it less DEEP because I built it to make flutes on. Typically the flutes are around 24" in total length. So it's kinda nice having all that length supported.

NOW... I'm having so much fun with the router that I'm looking at trying my hand at some other projects. First one of which will probably be the cabinet doors to replace the old plywood ones in the bathroom I'm remodeling. Then a new bed for the wife and me. See? These aren't little bitty thangs. But I'm not sure I need all the length. And I really think that if I keep the 24" depth, I'd like to off-center the router more toward the BACK of the table to give me more meat up front.

Am I going down a path I should be avoiding? Am I building my table too big? For flutes I don't need 24" depth. They're REALLY skinny! :) But for some of this other stuff will I appreciate that depth?

I guess I'm looking for the voice of experience to come in here and give me a little guidance before I proceed.

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If support is all you're worried about, consider getting or building work stands. I have one stand that has 2 different rollers on it. One side, it acts as a support for say, miter saw work. The other side, allows unrestricted movement of the piece I'm working on. You just have to be comfortable with what you are working on/with.

Just my $0.02 worth

One problem that I've noticed with my table is that with the centerline of the the router set back about 16" from the front, it makes me reach a long way to the fence and work-piece.
I have lots of support, but if I am milling a lot of pieces consecutively, it begins to fatigue my arms slightly, and tires my back. I'm young and fit, so it's not a big issue for me. However, my next table will be smaller than my current one.
I also use shop-built feather boards, and clamp them to the table. If I'm routing skinny stock, it can be difficult to get the clamp to hold the feather board tight enough from so far away.
Most of the routing that we do could be handled with the router closer to the edge of the table. The first table I built the router was centered in the table,didn't take long to decide that wasn't for me.It all depends on what you feel better with. I have a friend who has a PC base screwed to a piece of plywood, when he needs a table he installs the router,uses a board for a fence and hangs the whole thing in a 55gal. drum. Works for him. Find out what works for you.

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