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Complete Illustrated guide to
Complete Illustrated Guide to
Taunton’s Complete illustrated Guide to
Look for another way. Newtown. Box 5506. Porter-Cable Omnijig® Working wood is inherently dangerous. . Illustrations © 2006 by the Taunton Press. We want you to enjoy the craft. II. If something about an operation doesn’t feel right. CT 06470-5506 e-mail: tp@taunton. Plexiglas®. All rights reserved.543.. cm. Routers (Computer networks) 2.com Editor: Paul Anthony Design: Lori Wendin Layout: Cathy Cassidy Illustrator: Mario Ferro Photographer: Lonnie Bird Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data Bird. CMT®. Don’t try to perform operations you learn about here (or elsewhere) unless you’re certain they are safe for you. p. Lonnie. © 2006 by The Taunton Press.083--dc22 2006001505 Printed in the United States of America 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 The following manufacturers/names appearing in Taunton’s Complete Illustrated Guide to Routers are trademarks: Akeda®. Internetworking (Telecommunication) I. Inc. Pp The Taunton Press. Amana®. Title: Complete illustrated guide to routers. TK5105.Text © 2006 by Lonnie Bird Photography by Lonnie Bird. ISBN: 978-1-56158-766-7 print edition ISBN: 978-1-60085-441-5 digital edition 1. Inc.O. Inc. Katie Jig®. P. Title. 63 South Main Street. Taunton’s complete illustrated guide to routers / Lonnie Bird. Using hand or power tools improperly or ignoring safety practices can lead to permanent injury or even death. don’t do it. so please keep safety foremost in your mind whenever you’re in the shop.B57 2006 684’.
and BenchDog. for his sharp editorial skills. My sincerest thanks to all. including Amana Tools. Porter-Cable. Paul Anthony. .B. Bosch. I wish to thank Helen Albert and Jennifer Peters at The Taunton Press.Acknowledgements W riting a book is never a solo project. –L. Jessem. I also want to thank my editor. Several corporations provided tools for photography. behind the scenes is always a group of people that work to ensure the project’s success.
Contents Introduction • 3 pa r t o ne Tools • 4 Choosing Routers and Accessories • 6 ➤ SECTION 1 22 Custom Baseplates 25 Edge Guide 26 Maintenance ➤ SECTION 2 All About Bits • 27 48 Setting Up Bits ➤ SECTION 3 Router Tables • 52 67 Router Table Fences 71 Benchtop Router Table 75 Router Table Sled .
pa r t t w o Basic Operations • 76 Common Cuts • 78 ➤ SECTION 4 86 Plunge Cuts 88 Guided Cuts 91 Shaping Cuts 97 Routing Small Parts ➤ SECTION 5 Edges and Moldings • 101 109 Routing Edges 114 Making Moldings ➤ SECTION 6 Flush-Trimming • 123 127 FlushTrimming .
pa r t t h r e e Joinery • 130 ➤ SECTION 7 Router Joinery • 132 140 Grooving 147 Rabbets 150 Dovetails 163 Other Joints ➤ SECTION 8 Doors and Drawers • 180 184 Frame Joinery 199 Panels 202 Door Details 205 Drawer Joinery pa r t f o u r Special Shaping • 208 ➤ SECTION 9 Routing with Templates • 210 214 Using a Bearing 218 Using a Bushing ➤ SECTION 10 Special Shaping Operations • 222 223 Fluting 228 Dishing .
it was used primarily for shaping decorative profiles along the edges of tabletops and drawer fronts. but it really is at the heart of the matter. completing the job with hand tools. For some tasks. complex molding bits. –L. For example. and guiding the cut in the proper manner. but the truth is. which range from simple straight bits to large. including grooving. it’s more versatile and economical. So be prepared to expand your woodworking skills through the capabilities of this most remarkable tool. I’ll show you a range of options. effectively turning the router into a stationary machine—a minishaper that’s capable of routing large-scale jobs such as door panels.B. Unleashing all this versatility basically depends on two things: using the appropriate bit. it can do a lot more. Many commercial jigs are available to help you perform simple or complex operations. flush-trimming. such as excavating for hardware. As for guiding the cut. . Although a tablemounted router lacks the power of a shaper. including using the edge of the router base. making it well suited to small-shop woodworkers on a limited budget. but you can also construct jigs yourself. However. of course. a base. In fact. Another option is to use a jig or router table. And yet it is one of the most versatile tools you can own. if you flip through the pages of any router bit catalog. and cutting almost any joint. the router can create all of the joinery necessary to make entire assemblies such as doors and drawers. you might choose to simply guide the router freehand to remove much of the waste stock. fitting a bushing to the opening in the base. You can also choose to attach a fence or edge guide to the base. and a collet. including the all-important mortise-and-tenon and dovetail joints. you’ll find that a judicious selection of a few essential bits will enable you to accomplish many of your routing tasks. It’s still a great choice for those tasks. as I’ll show you in this book. Back when the router was first invented. No other woodworking machine lends itself more to the use of jigs or tablemounting than the router. you’re sure to become overwhelmed by the assortment of bit styles and sizes. raising panels.Introduction T he router is undoubtedly one of the simplest of woodworking machines—basically comprising just a motor. It’s my hope that this book will provide you with a thorough understanding of the router and what you can achieve with it. or using a guide bearing on the bit. That’s a bit of an oversimplification. Router tables open up a whole other realm of possibilities.
Choosing Routers and Accessories. page 27 Router Tables. page 52 . page 6 All About Bits.
shape. Ergonomics have improved too. you’ll find more types than ever before. Larger bits can be paired up with powerful table-mounted routers for performing operations such as cutting profiles on raised panels or large moldings— jobs that formerly required a large industrial shaper. and size all making it easier to get a good grip and improve control. change bits and bearings. In this part of the book. and how to build a router table .PART One Tools A and accessories. I’ll help you sort out the routers. bits. and accessories that best suit your needs. and accessories. Today. I’ll also show you how to maintain your tools. so has the available variety of routers. with handle placement. bit offerings are better than ever. Modern bits come in lots of shapes and sizes to suit just about any job. Routers have become more sophisticated and often incorporate such features as soft-start and electronic variable speed control. Like router choices. bits. s the popularity of woodworking has grown.
23) O pen the pages of a woodworking tool catalog and you’re sure to become overwhelmed with the selection of routers.sECTion 1 Choosing Routers and Accessories Custom Baseplates ➤ Edge Guide ➤ Maintenance ➤ Making a Custom Baseplate (p. Router Types Take a close look and you’ll see that routers are pretty simple machines. 22) Constructing an Edge Guide (p. plunge router. tables. collet. However. if you’ve perused the pages of any tool catalog. router lifts with machine-shop accuracy. and laminate trimmers. the router has changed the way we work wood. soft start. electronic variable speed (EVS) motors. and other accessories. resulting in more choices in routers and accessories than ever before. Fixed-base 6 . In this section. and self-releasing collets have all made their débuts in the last 30 years. but it can also be confusing—especially if you’re new to woodworking. Yet. Having choices and options is great. all routers can be divided into three main types: Fixed-base. 25) Router Maintenance (p. lifts. all comprise a motor. I’ll show you what’s out there and help you to focus on matching your woodworking needs with the many available features and options. no doubt you’ve been confused by the large assortment of routers. 26) ➤ Making a StraightSided Baseplate (p. In the last 25 years. and a base (see the photos on the facing page). Elaborate tables.
sECTion 1 Fixed-base routers have been a popular style for many years. All routers have a motor. Choosing Routers and Accessories 7 . Plunge routers are the best choice for mortising. collet. and base. Laminate trimmers are scaled-down fixed-base routers.
both for handheld use and for equipping a router table. Adjustments to the cutting depth are made by spiraling the motor within the base and locking it in position with a thumbscrew or lever.sECTion 1 routers have been around the longest and they’re still the most popular. Helical slot Motor Collet The motor on this fixed-base router fits into a helical thread in the base. A graduated ring helps in making accurate adjustments (see the photos on the facing page). Most fixed-base routers use a large helical thread to engage the motor to the base (see the drawing below). FixEd-BAsE RouTER Switch Pins in the router body engage helical slot in the base. Base Baseplate 8 Choosing Routers and Accessories . Some newer models of fixed-base routers have a micrometer knob for making The fixed-base router really has not changed much in the last 50 years.
A 1940s-era router is operated in much the same way as today’s routers. Stanley worked to popularize the router with advertisements in early trade magazines such as Home Craftsman. Surprisingly. by the base.000 of his machines when he was bought out by Stanley Tools sometime before World War II.sECTion 1 A lock lever has become standard on most new routers. and by the 1940s. ➤ A BRiEF hisToRy Although the popularity of routers has risen dramatically in recent years. had manufactured and sold nearly 100. Choosing Routers and Accessories 9 .L. Although modern motors are much larger and feature sophisticated electronics. routers are still guided as they were many decades ago. the basic operations of the router remain unchanged. This graduated ring can be zeroed out for exact adjustments to the depth. In the 21st century. they have been around awhile. such as soft start and electronic variable speed. one entrepreneur. In fact. a bushing. or an edge guide. R. pilot on the bit. Stanley Tools popularized the router during the 1930s and 1940s. Carter. the venerable fixed-base router has not really changed that much since those early days. sales were strong.
after the setting is made. Still other fixed-base routers use a rack and pinion for making height adjustments. Although the degree of precision provided by a micrometer knob usually isn’t needed for cutting decorative shapes. while a micrometer dial makes ” precise depth adjustments. And if you choose to use one of the This router uses a geared “rack” for depth adjustments. Fixed-base routers are also the best design for use in a router table. 10 Choosing Routers and Accessories . A micrometer dial makes precise adjustments easy. the motor is locked in position within the base and remains in a fixed position throughout the cut. Either way. ultra-fine adjustments to the cutting depth and a lever to lock the setting.sECTion 1 A series of notches provide a “ballpark setting. especially compared to those of plunge-base routers. it’s a real asset for setting up for routing dovetails or other fine joinery. Height adjustments are fast and convenient.
Plunge Router Not long after the fixed-base router was first introduced. BIR 08 Choosing Routers and Accessories 11 . and a lever locks it in place (see the photo on p. This design allows you to make depth adjustments as the router is running. heavy-duty router is a favorite for use in a router table.sECTion 1 PlunGE RouTER Fine-adjustment knob Switch Speed control Toggle lock Handle The router rides up and down on columns. plunge routers made their way to the market. The motor of a plunge router slides up and down on a pair of posts attached to the base (see the drawing above). you should realize that they are usually designed for use with a fixed-base router. The motor of a plunge router is suspended on spring-loaded posts. Rough depth-stop adjustment (acts against depth stop) Click-stop depth stop Base This large. many router lifts in your table. A spring suspends the motor on the posts. 12).
As their name implies. grooves. in precise. plunge routers have a depth stop. The plunge router is the best choice for routing mortises. laminate trimmers are versatile routers that find a number of uses in my shop—from cutting shallow mortises for installing hardware to routing narrow grooves for scaled-down joinery (see the photo on the facing page). which is simply a steel rod that positions against a screw on the router base. But don’t let the name fool you. A three-position turret allows for multiple depth settings. laminate Trimmers Laminate trimmers are best described as scaled-down fixed-base routers. these little routers are designed to trim plastic laminate when you install kitchen countertops.sECTion 1 The lock lever on a plunge router should be within easy reach. Plunge routers typically have three depth screws mounted on a turret. In order to lower the bit to a precise depth. incremental steps. This allows you to make a deep cut. and other joints that require starting and ending the cut at a specific point of layout. Plunge routers are equipped with a depth stop. such as a mortise. 12 Choosing Routers and Accessories .
And when you don’t need the plunge feature. most manufacturers now offer a router kit that comes equipped with one motor and both plunge and fixed bases. so you don’t want to overload these tools.-dia. Because of this design. The straight sides of a square baseplate will give the router a steady footprint and greater precision when used with a guide or template. it also changes the center of gravity. they’ll route in confined spaces where a full-sized router can’t. Although this is precisely what allows you to safely plunge into a mortise (you don’t want to try tipping a fixed-base router into a deep stop cut). making the router easier to control. Still the favorite choice of many woodworkers. Some are even designed with a built-in height adjuster for router table use. the handles of a plunge router are fastened to the sleeve that grips the motor. This router comes with a wrench that allows for easy height adjustment when it’s outfitted in a router table. Fortunately.sECTion 1 ➤ FixEd-BAsE oR PlunGE BAsE? For many woodworkers. you may find the fixed-base router easier to control. using a plunge router can take some getting used to. with handles positioned near the baseplate. and the chuck will only accept bits with a 1⁄4-in. Laminate trimmers are versatile little multi-task routers. In contrast. fixed-base routers have a lower center of gravity. Choosing Routers and Accessories 13 . Laminate trimmers don’t have a lot of power. look for one with a square baseplate. When shopping for a laminate trimmer. choosing between a fixed-base router and a plunge router is no easy task. the height of the motor and handles changes. when a full-sized router would be awkward and difficult to control. But the light weight and small size make them ideal for light cuts. As the sleeve is vertically repositioned along the steel rods. which may be most of the time. shank. And because laminate trimmers are compact. Router kits come supplied with with both fixed and plunge bases.
the most important feature of any router is the motor. most of what you’re paying for is the motor. because routers use universal motors rather than induction motors. Bigger motors will handle bigger bits. When you’re shopping for a router. that although conventional wisdom often dictates 14 Choosing Routers and Accessories . But manufacturers use it anyway. etc. not continuous horsepower.450 rpm) found on stationary tools such as tablesaws. allowing larger shaping. as well as on benchtop tools such as portable planers. like comparing apples to oranges. Comparing horsepower ratings on universal motors to the horsepower ratings on induction motors is. The efficiency of the router is a factor. as the saying goes. although they may not truly know what it means. But a 2-hp universal motor is rated according to peak horsepower. one of the first criteria to consider is the motor horsepower. But horsepower ratings can be deceiving when you’re selecting a router. and jointer. probably because most people are familiar with the term. In contrast. And when you purchase a router. the more electrical current the router draws and the greater the power output. The higher the amperage rating. Remember. less efficient windings. high-revving motors (about 20. every day—such as in a manufacturing facility running three shifts. so let’s take a look at what’s available. induction motors are the relatively slow-turning motors (about 3. too. A 2-hp induction motor will deliver 2 hp all day long. deeper grooves. Motors When comparing routers.sECTion 1 Features Although routers are pretty simple machines. Because of lower-quality bearings. horsepower rating is simply not the best method for comparing universal motors. too. Undoubtedly. you’ll want to be aware of the many available features so that you’ll get the router that best suits your needs.000 rpm on routers) found on most small power tools The sliding switch at the top of the router controls the speed of its universal motor. their features can vary widely. Universal motors are the small. In short. So you can expect your 2-hp router to provide 2 hp for only a brief period before it overheats and quits. planers. such as drills and sanders. an inexpensive consumer-grade router will not have the power output of a professional router—even if the amperage rating is the same. a better representation of power is amperage rating. Because of this. and even the design of the cooling fan. Some of the electrical current is always turned into heat instead of power. Whether you’re shopping for your first router or replacing an aging model. you get what you pay for.
Yet there is no mechanical interlock between Choosing Routers and Accessories 15 . reducing the jarring motion from the startup torque. allowing you to slow the motor for large bits and speed it up again for smooth cutting with small-diameter bits.000 rpm to 25. Most EVS routers have a speed range of 10. Spinning a 3-in. Large-diameter bits have a much higher peripheral speed than do small bits when spinning at the same rpm. This feature allows you to adjust the motor speed to suit the bit diameter. The collet of a router has to grip a bit securely while under the stress and strain of cutting through dense hardwood at speeds of about 20.000 rpm. that bigger is better.-diameter panel-raising bit at 22. Soft start is an electronic feature that delays full rpm for a second to prevent the router from jerk- Collets The smallest part of the router has one of the toughest jobs. Motor Options Routers today have several options that were not available just a few years ago.sECTion 1 This infinitely variable speed dial allows you to adjust the speed for the job at hand. the extra power also adds extra weight and can make a large router awkward to use for handheld operations. Electronic variable speed gives you a greater degree of flexibility with your router. The one-second delay of a soft start router brings the motor rpm up gradually. variable speed.000 rpm or 15. Electronic variable speed (EVS) is another option worth having. Really big routers are best reserved for use in a router table. ing as it instantaneously reaches full rpm at the flick of the switch.000 rpm to 22.000 rpm.000 rpm is dangerous and may scorch the wood and dull the cutting edges from excess heat. Two-hp routers are a good choice for handheld routing. and electronic speed control are all options worth considering. Soft start.
collets (see the photo on the facing page. look for one that accepts both. As the collet nut is tightened. some designs incorporate a snap ring that secures the collet to the lock nut (see the bottom left photo). The outside of the collet is tapered to match the taper machined inside the end of the router motor spindle. putting the squeeze on the bit’s shank. As the nut is loosened. In fact. It works surprisingly well.) When you shop for a router. the bit and the collet as there is with most power tools.sECTion 1 As the collet is tightened. now most have 1⁄ 2-in. it forces the collet into the taper. it pulls the collet and bit out. collets. Years ago most routers had only 1⁄4-in. It works like this: The collet has slits that allow it to compress. many small profiles are This self-releasing collet uses a snap ring to join the collet and nut.-dia. shank router bits (more on that in the section on bits). This deep collet provides a firm grip on large bits. Although I usually route with 1⁄ 2-in.-dia. 16 Choosing Routers and Accessories . it can squeeze so tightly that the bit can sometimes be difficult to remove later. the slots allow it to compress around the shank of the bit. the collet in a laminate trimmer is simple in design and must be kept clean to function.dia. the collet simply squeezes the bit. this allows you to fully insert the bit without the shank bottoming out. As the nut is tightened. The better collet designs are also deep. Because of its small size. That’s why the best collets are self-releasing. the tapered end of the collet is drawn into the collet housing. this will provide you with the greatest flexibility (see the photo on the facing page). too.
are still available. If you’re experiencing bit slippage.) If a light cleaning doesn’t correct the problem. When cleaning. they can form inside the threads of the collet nut or within the collet itself. With a collet lock. Adapter sleeves are often not concentric. Finally.sECTion 1 Collets come in various sizes and configurations. it’s important to realize that collets often wear out before the motor or other router components. I avoid using adapter sleeves.-dia. AdAPTER slEEvE While you’re at it. It's best to use a collet sized to the bit shank. such as edge guides and bushings. Router Accessories There are a number of worthy accessories for your router that will make it more functional and easier to use. ➤ CollET MAinTEnAnCE A little basic maintenance will keep your router’s collet functioning well for a long time. as they don’t grip the bit as tightly as a collet that is made for the purpose. shank. too. anything coarser can put deep scratches in the surface and potentially hinder the holding power. Choosing Routers and Accessories 17 . The old favorites. use a small amount of solvent such as mineral spirits to remove the grime. The main culprits are dirt and pitch. (It can also be a sign of an undersized bit. it’s important to avoid abrading the collet. take a close look at the socket on the end of the motor shaft and clean it. it can be a sign that the collet is dirty or Expansion/ contraction slots worn. it’s probably time to replace the collet. as discussed in Section Two. Although you can use a mild plastic pad to polish the inside of a collet. If necessary. only one wrench is needed. only available in a 1⁄4-in.
The baseplate also works to support the router. Guide bushings allow you to use your router with templates and jigs. Guide bushings are available in a variety of lengths and diameters (see the photo on the facing page). But today’s router tables. it provides a template for making a custom baseplate. You may decide to swap it for an aftermarket baseplate or one that you make yourself. This popular Porter/ Cable bushing is held in place with a knurled nut. knurled lock ring. the typical baseplate does have limitations. will transform your router into a stationary tool with an incredible degree of precision. however. along with their sophisticated lifts. Hold onto the factory baseplate. router bases are fitted with a slick plastic baseplate. and the opening in the baseplate provides a way to attach guide bushings for shaping or routing with a template. Although the factory-supplied baseplate works well for most routing operations. The bushing slips into the bit opening and is held in position with a threaded. Custom Baseplates In order to reduce friction and allow routers to glide smoothly across the surface of the workpiece.sECTion 1 Swapping baseplates on most routers is a snap. 18 Choosing Routers and Accessories .
teardropshaped baseplate will enable you to easily keep the router balanced and upright. first choose your materials: plastic or plywood. When using plywood for a custom baseplate. file. or 1⁄2-in. Clear plastic will provide an unobstructed view. thickness. and you can save money by asking for available offcuts rather than purchasing a large sheet. Remember to buy screws long enough to attach the new baseplate. If the router tips. Best of all. When making a custom baseplate. A clear baseplate offers a better view of the cut. You can swap out your router’s standard baseplate for one of the many aftermarket varieties or you can make one of your own. A teardrop-shaped baseplate helps maintain balance during edge routing. while plywood is easier to work and allows you to quickly attach a fence as a guide. which limits the stability of the router. When you rout along an edge. which weakens the plywood. If the stock baseplate screws have panheads. Choosing Routers and Accessories 19 . switch to flathead screws. much of the router overhangs the workpiece. Anything thinner flexes too easily. you can saw. the router’s footprint is reduced. anything thicker costs you cutting depth. ➤ MAkinG CusToM BAsEPlATEs Changing router baseplates is a fast and easy way to add greater versatility to an already versatile machine.sECTion 1 Many woodworkers prefer a clear baseplate. These plastics are durable and inexpensive. Panhead screws require a counterbore. A set of guide bushings provides more versatility. be aware that as the opening is enlarged. which provides a better view when you’re approaching a layout line. There are also baseplates with larger openings to accommodate large-diameter bits. and trim the plastic with the same tools you use for working wood. the workpiece can be spoiled. select 3⁄ 8-in. A large. Your local glass shop will have acrylic and polycarbonate plastics available. However.
the router table adds more to the versatility of the router than any other accessory. One of the most common approaches is to attach an edge guide to the router base. a mini-shaper that’s capable of shaping raised 20 Choosing Routers and Accessories . in effect. Edge Guides Profile bits are usually guided by an integral bearing. you’ll need another method. that large bits belong in a table-mounted router and are not intended for handheld routing. By mounting your router table under a table. Best of all. Router Tables A factory edge guide is precise and easy to set up and use. But when cutting a groove with a straight bit or using a bit without a guide bearing. you may just opt to construct one of your own (see the photo on the facing page). some edge guides have a micrometer knob that makes fine settings a snap. Without a doubt. Like custom baseplates. The easiest method is to replace your router’s baseplate with one of plywood. It’s made to fit your router base. The edge guide offered as an accessory to your router has several worthwhile features. and so it takes just a minute or two to fasten it in position. you create. A router table baseplate will increase the footprint and provide a straight side for use with a guide. If you seldom have a need for an edge guide. You can attach a guide to the baseplate with screws for a quick and sturdy setup or make the guide adjustable with slotted holes and wing nuts. edge guides can be purchased from the company that made the router or you can make an edge guide of your own. The fence adjusts with no fuss and locks firmly in place.sECTion 1 Remember. This allows you to customize it to suit the requirements of the job at hand. A router-table insert plate works well for a straight-sided baseplate. too.
you no longer need to remove a heavy router from the table to change bits. panels. complicated cuts that would be difficult (if not impossible) to create with a handheld router. And you’ll have to remove the router to make bit changes. it’s easier to run the workpiece past the router than to run the router over the workpiece. And you no longer have to remove a heavy router from the table to change bits. While that approach still works. as shown on p. in effect. Years ago. and many other large. there is now a full array of commercial models available. Mounted in a table. the power switch and height adjustment mechanism are no longer easily accessible. especially if you’re on a tight budget. you’ll immediately encounter some problems. For example. a mini-shaper. For more on router tables and lifts. Lifts Mounting your router in a table turns it into a stationary power tool with several advantages over hand routing.sECTion 1 With a router lift. If you’re routing long pieces. see Section Three. cope-and-stick framework for doors. such as this rabbet. Height adjustments are easily and precisely made from the top. a router table will provide plenty of support. A shopmade edge guide will allow you to produce a variety of cuts. woodworkers made their own simple router tables with a sheet of plywood. crown molding. 55. Choosing Routers and Accessories 21 . ranging from simple yet sturdy benchtop models to floor-standing versions complete with extruded aluminum components and height adjustments with machine-shop accuracy. A router lift solves these problems. But once you mount your router in a table. just lift the router with a crank and make bit changes from above the table. In many cases. the portable router becomes.
cutting to within 1⁄16 in. Saw the excess material with a scrollsaw or bandsaw. now. of the factory baseplate (B). next. drill and countersink the holes for the baseplate screws (E) and fasten the new baseplate in place (F). the center opening is too small to accommodate larger profile bits. A Begin by attaching the factory baseplate to the new baseplate material with double-stick tape (A). Set up the router table with a flush trim bit and a stick for use as a starting pin or fulcrum (C). B C d E F 22 Choosing Routers and Accessories . The solution is to make a new custom baseplate using the factory baseplate as a pattern.C u sTo M B As E P l AT E s Making a Custom Baseplate Because the baseplate on many routers is designed for attaching a guide bushing. trim away the excess material (d).
Carefully align the parts (E). To make the baseplate.-thick plywood. Attach the template to the baseplate stock with double-stick tape (d). The solution is to use a base with straight sides. This is usually unimportant. such as a rectangle of 1⁄4-in. 24) A B C d E Choosing Routers and Accessories 23 . You can use the factory baseplate as a template for the bit opening (C). (Text continues on p. except when you’re guiding the router from the base. you’ll need a template. which ensure that the distance from the edge of the baseplate to the collet is always constant (B). where it can spoil the accuracy of the cut.C u sTo M B As E P l AT E s Making a straight-sided Baseplate Round baseplates are often not concentric with the collet (A).
F G h i J k l 24 Choosing Routers and Accessories . a starting pin will enable you to ease into the cut (G). Finally. you can maneuver away from the starting pin (h). now. now trim the edges flush. center the router base over the baseplate and mark the location of the mounting holes (i). Once the template has made contact with the guide bearing.C u sTo M B As E P l AT E s Apply pressure to the tape for a secure grip (F). mount the custom baseplate to the router base (l). Attach the new baseplate to the factory baseplate (J) and trim the center bit opening (k).
first clamp a stop block to the fence (d). which has sufficient stiffness without adding excessive weight or thickness. you may prefer to devise one of your own using 3⁄ 8-in. To make a plunge cut for the slots.EdGE GuidE Constructing an Edge Guide Manufactured edge guides are precise and easy to use. now attach a fence to the base with machine screws and wing nuts (F). Begin by drilling holes for the bit and mounting screws (A). Then. lay out the slots for the fence A (B) and make the setup on a router table (C). Then. next.-thick plywood. attach the plywood base to the router (G). carefully lower the workpiece over the spinning bit (E). B C d E F G Choosing Routers and Accessories 25 . But if you seldom use an edge guide.
To thoroughly clean this area. The router motor will draw in dust and shavings. which can cause it to overheat (C). you’ll first have to remove the cap over the end of the motor (d) and then use a vacuum to remove the dust (E. F). A rag dampened with mineral spirits will soften the grime so that you A B can more easily remove it. avoid using steel wool. I avoid using compressed air for this because it can force dust and dirt further inside the machine. However.MAinTEnAnCE Router Maintenance Routers quickly become dirty with dust and pitch. which can drop into the cooling vent and damage the motor windings. To ensure smooth cutting and the longevity of your router. C d E F 26 Choosing Routers and Accessories . If necessary. Also inspect the taper on the collet for pitch (B). Begin by removing the collet and inspecting the collet housing for pitch (A). you can use a mild abrasive plastic pad. it’s a good idea to clean the collet and motor regularly.
too. 27 . Dependingonthesizeandshape.“Yougetwhat youpayfor. 48) Changing Bearings (p.However.Uponinspection.section 2 All About Bits setting Up Bits ➤ Changing Bits (p.28). 49) Adjusting a Stacking Bit (p. 50) ➤ ➤ outer bitshavecomealongway inthepast30years.I’ll discussthewidevarietyofchoicesandshow youhowtomakesmartbuyingdecisions. Design and Materials Soyoupurchasedthe3-hpbehemothrouter anddroppeditintothemostexpensivetable onthemarket.The qualityisbetterthanever.thereareafewbitsoutthereto avoid.you’ll wanttomakeinformedchoicesandpurchasejustwhatyouneed.ahalf- R dozenbitscaneasilyadduptomorethan thecostofyourrouter.”Thefinestrouterwillnotcut cleanlyandsmoothlyifyouequipitwithan inferiorbit(seethetopphotoonp.Youfliptheswitchandmake thecut.Whathappened? Thebitslowlycreptoutofthecollet. Ifyou’renewtowoodworking.Andasroutertablesandroutershavegrownlarger.Therefore.Asthesayinggoes.therearemore choicesinshapeanddesignthan everbefore. becauseofthesurgeofinterestinwoodworking.you maybesurprisedatthecostofrouterbits.sohavethebits.Inthissection.younoticethatthe cutistoodeeponthetrailingendandthe workisruined.
andthechoicescanbeoverwhelming. calledflutes.Thisslightanglecreates The shank of a bit should be no more than .which. ball-bearing pilot. Somebitsincorporateanti-kickback design.itdidn’tcomecompletelyout.section 2 The carbide tips. “Anti-kickback” bits help control overfeeding of the workpiece.Andaddto thatthevarietiesofshapes. I’mnotmakingupthisstory.Viewedfromtheside.thecolletcouldn’tgripittightly. luckily.494in.which isabout.lessthanitshouldbe.As aresultofthesloppymachiningofthebit shank. under. At .A measurementofthebitshankwithadial calipershowsareadingof. smaller than the collet diameter. Onepotentialcauseofkickbackisover- feedingthestock.andmaterials.limitsthechipthickness(seethedrawingonthefacingpage).sizes. shank make the bit on the left far superior to the one on the right..005in. thecuttingedgeistiltedfromthevertical planeofthebitshank(seethetopphotoon thefacingpage). there’smoretomanufacturingahigh-quality routerbitthanyoumightthink.It’strue— andithappenedtome.However.Triple-flute bitsaredesignedtoprovideasmoothersurface. Flutes Mostrouterbitshavetwocuttingedges.001 in.Routerbitsthatusean anti-kickbackdesignworkbylimitingthe projectionofthecuttingedge.somestraightbits haveoneflutewhileothershavethree.Itcomesdownto this:Thebitisthemostimportantpartof thesetup.-dia. Single-flutebitscutsomewhatfasterand areusuallyalittlelessexpensive.Althoughrouterbitsappearprettysimple. this shank is perfectly sized.002 in.Skimphereandyoumightregret it.butthesameeffectcanbeachievedby slowingthefeedratewhileusingadoubleflutebit.in turn. and 1⁄2-in. 28 All About Bits .Kickbackoccurswhentheworkpiece isthrownbackviolentlytowardtheoperator. Thesmoothest-cuttingrouterbitsincorporateashearangle. Let’stakeacloserlook.
Thecuttingedgesofaspiral bitarealwaysincontactwiththeworkpiece.Theycutcleanmortisewalls.choose aspiralbit.Theflutesofaspiralbitwind aroundtheshanklikethestripesonabarber’spole. andthespiralfluteslifttheshavingsfrom themortise.thebearing ismountedontheendofthebitopposite thecollet.Spiralbitswithguidebearings areusedforeitherflushtrimmingorpattern trimming. BIR 10 All About Bits 29 .section 2 Anti-KicKBAcK Design Small opening limits chip size and overfeeding.Onflush-trimbits.Thesebitsaregreatfortrimming afaceframeflushtothecabinetwithabsolutelyzerotearout. ashearingeffect. Routerbitsthatdon’thaveashearanglehave agreatertendencytosplinterandburn thewood. Spiralbitswithoutbearingsarepopular formortising.Onspiralpatternbits.the guidebearingismountedbetweentheflutes The flutes on spiral bits twist like the stripes on a barber’s pole. The bit on the left will cut more cleanly due to its skewed flute. leavingaphenomenallysmoothsurface. Forthesmoothestpossiblefinish.Thisdesign’sactionissuperiorto theintermittentcuttingactionofthestandardbitdesign.asyoudowhenyoupush ahandplaneacrossaboardatanangle.
Anddon’teven attempttoroutparticleboardorMDFwith it. 30 All About Bits .down-cut.mostrouterbitsweremadeof high-speedsteel(HSS). [ tiP ] spiral bits are expensive.Thisprovidesfast cuttingactionandgoodchipremovalfor cuttingmortises.youcanchoose fromthreestyles:up-cut.itdoesn’tholdanedgeforverylong.Andcarbide-tipped them only when i need the smoothest possible surface.Compressionspiralscut inbothdirectionssimultaneouslytoleave bothtopandbottomsurfacesfreeoftearout.althoughyoucan stillfindHSSbitsatmanyhardwarestores andhomesupplycenters.Anup-cutpullsthechips upwardtowardtherouter.abrasivenatureofthese man-madeboardswilldulltheHSSedgein shortorder.Spiralpatternbitsareidealfortrimmingstockflushtoacurvedpatternwhere bothshortgrainandendgrainwilllikelybe encountered.ithaslargely beenreplacedbycarbide. YoumayfindHSSbitstemptingbecause oftheirlowprice. so i use High-Speed Steel vs.itwillkeepthesharpedge 20to25timeslonger.Today.section 2 andtheshank.Buteventhoughhigh- speedsteelcanbesharpenedtoarazor edge.Down-cutspiralscutmore slowlybutleavethetopsurfaceoftheworkpiecesplinter-free. Althoughacarbide-tippedrouterbitmay costthreeorfourtimesmorethanacomparableHSSbit. Carbide-tipped bits (at left in each pair here) will last 20 times longer than high-speed steel (HSS) bits. Ontheotherhand.carbideisvery hardandresistanttobothwearandheat. Whenselectingspiralbits.and compression. especiallyonplywood.becausethehard.Alockcollarwithatinysetscrewkeepsthebearingheldfirmlyinposition. Carbide Yearsago.
000rpm.bitshouldmeasurenoless than.routersareunique inthatthecolletsimplysqueezesthebit shanktoholditfirmlyinplace.especiallyifthecarbidetipsare thick.Wheninsertingabitinto thecollet. consider that thicker tips allow many more sharpenings.anda1⁄2-in. routerbitscanalsoberesharpenedmany times.the bitslowlycreptoutofthecollet.carbide-tippedbits arefittedwithball-bearingguides.498in. Asanaddedbenefit.whenIwasroutingagroove.abit shankshouldbewithin.Asthe bitspinsat20.thepilotspinsat thesamespeed.. Don’t insert a bit up to the fillet at the base of the profile.carbide-tipped routerbitsaremuchmoreeconomicalthan HSSbits.sawblades areheldsecurelyonthearborwithalarge washerandnut.thepilotofahigh-speedsteelbitis simplyanextensionofthebititself.For example.(fiveten-thousandthsofaninch).248in. Once.shankno lessthan.Forexample.Needlessto say.0005in.However.002in.ofthe colletdiameter.Sointhelongrun. [ tiP ] When comparison shopping for carbide-tipped bits.Iwassurprised.becausethecolletand All About Bits 31 .-dia. Forasecuregripinthecollet.don’tallowthecollettocontact therampedareawheretheshankmeetsthe cuttinghead.Thesystem workswellifthecolletiscleanandwell designedandthebitshankisthecorrect diameter.Incontrast.-dia.theshank ofa 1⁄4-in.section 2 The solid pilot on this HSS bit scorches the wood as it spins.Theball- bearingpilotsoncarbide-tippedbitsdon’t createtheseproblems. Shanks Mostwoodworkingpowertoolsusesome sortofmechanicalinterlocktofastenthe bladeorcuttersecurelytothemachine.planerknivesareheldinthe cutterheadwithgibsandscrews.Theresultisthatthesteel pilotwillburnishtheedgeofthework- pieceandmayevenscorchit. butothersarenotsoprecise.Bettermanufacturersgrind andpolishtheshanksoftheirbitswithin .
shank.-dia.Despitethelow price.I don’twanttospinahunkofsteelandcarbideat20.routershavemorepower thaneverbeforetodrivethehugebitsthat arenowavailable.Ipurchase abitwitha 1⁄2-in.shankbit.-dia.brazing.section 2 Unless you need a small bit for use in a laminate trimmer. lockitintoa1⁄4-in.-dia.-dia.andmostrouterbitshave a 1⁄2-in.BecauseIhad purchasedahandfulofthesebitsatawoodworkingshow.collet.ontheoccasionwhenyoudousea 1⁄4-in.006in.With routerbits.such ascarbidequality.theyweren’tmuchofabargain.shank.-dia.collet. Ifyou’restillusingyour1970srouterwitha 1⁄4-in.andIplanto usethebitinalaminatetrimmer.thenit’stimetoupgrade.dothemath andyou’llseethatit’saneasydecision.Perhapsyoucanorderone. Small-profile bits with 1⁄4-in.-dia. thatdeterminehowwelltheyperform. Althoughmanyrouterbitmanufacturers offerbushingsthatallowyoutomounta 1⁄4-in.too.Today. bitwerebothnewandclean.andtheprofileswere small.- and1⁄2-in.-dia.andshanksize.000rpmona 1⁄4-in.-dia.Unlessmy desiredprofileisverysmall.-dia. I’veseenthesebushingslosetheirgrip. Theydon’tseemtocompressandsqueeze thebitshanklikeawell-designedcollet that’smadeforthepurpose.mostrouterbitshada 1⁄4-in.it’sthethingsyoucan’tsee.Butwhenperusinga routerbitcatalog.-dia. 32 All About Bits .shank.-dia. lessthanthecolletdiameter.itwas.you’llstilloftenseerouter bitsofferedinbothshanksizes.checkwiththe manufacturer.Idecidedtocheckeachone.shank.shank.So. Yearsago.Remembering thattheareaofacircleisπR2.Mostrouters todaycomeequippedwithboth1⁄4-in.collet. it’s best to purchase one with a 1⁄2-in.-dia.collets.collet.bitshankina 1⁄2-in.Ifyoursdidn’tcome witha1⁄4-in.SoImeasured thediameterofthebitshank.-dia. Theywereallundersized. shanks are ideal for use in a laminate trimmer.
andsothebitshapesmoreofthe profile. types of Bits Routershavenotreallychangedthatmuch in30years.thepilot followstheedgeoftheworkpiece.mostbeadingbits canbeconvertedtoaroundoverprofileby replacingthestockbearingwithaslightly largerone.therearespiral straightbitsandadjustablegroovingbits thatworklikeatablesawstackdadohead.Asforthe tiny.most routerbitmanufacturersofferrabbetingsets thatconsistofonerabbetbitwithfouror fivebearingsofdifferentsizes.Thesmall diameterofthepilotgoesfurtherintothe corner.buttherearemoretypesand stylesofrouterbitsavailablethanever before.Besidesmanyprofilebitsforproducingmoldingsandtableedges.Theresultisthatyouwon’thaveto carvesomuchofthecornerbyhand.limitingthecuttingdepth.There arealsoafewspecialtytrimmingbitsonthe marketthatstilluseasolidpilot.the pilotissimplyanextensionofthebit.Andrabbetingbitscanbeadjustedtocutavarietyofdifferentdepthsby usingdifferent-sizedbearings.Ialwayskeepafew replacementsonhandforwhenabearing beginstorollerratically.thepilotisactually aminiatureballbearingthat’sheldinplace withaverysmallcapscrew.section 2 Pilots and Bearings Thereareseveralmethodsforguidinga routerbitthroughthestock.butoneofthe mostcommonistousethepilotontheend ofthebit.thosewhodidn’towna shaperwouldoftenshaperaisedpanelson atablesaw. And20yearsago. Aretherestillusesforsolidpilotbearings?Sure.ball-bearingpilots.I’lloftenuseaninexpensive HSSbitwithasolidsteelpilot.WhenIwanttoshapefurther intoacorner.Forexample.Theprocessisstonesimple:As thebitspinsandcutsthestock.Butnowtherearerouterbitsfor All About Bits This precision bearing ensures a consistent cutting depth without marring the work.OnHSSbits. The one advantage of a steel bit is that the small-diameter pilot will reach deeper into corners.Youcanchange thecuttingdepthofthebit—andsometimes eventheshapethatthebitproduces—just byswappingthebearingforalargeror smallerone.Infact. 33 .but oncarbiderouterbits.
make certain that there is a reasonable likelihood that you’ll use all the bits in The bead is a versatile profile.introducingstyleand detail.andogeebits.too.andcatalog.chamfers. the set.Theyinclude bitsformakingchamfers. that. you’re probably better off buying individual bits and getting just what you need. etc.manyoftoday’srouterbits aretoolargeforhandheldroutingandmust beruninatable-mountedrouter.Thesearethebitsthatshouldbea partofeverywoodworker’skit. 34 All About Bits .Theseare usedtoshapeprofilessuchasogees. But before you lay down the cash. ➤ BUying A set Most router bit manufacturers today offer router-bit sets comprising similar profiles. Edge-forming bits shape decorative profiles along the edge and face of the workpiece. Edge-Forming Bits Undoubtedlythemostcommonformof routerbitistheedge-formingbit.beading. such as edge forming.Edge-formingbitsaddadecorativeprofiletoasquareedge. If the set contains just one or two bits of a size or profile that you’ll never use. These sets can be a good deal because the cost of the individual bits would typically total more than the set.section 2 Large bits. have a higher rim speed.androundovers.roundovers.Let’stake alookatthewidevarietyofbitsavailableto today’swoodworker.Infact. grooving. when run at the same rpm as small bits.homecenter. so it’s good to have a bead bit assortment.Youcanfindthemin everyhardwarestore.
Dadoesareoften usedtoholdcabinetandbookshelfpartitionsinplace.havingalltheprofiles stackedononeshankcanactuallyextenda bit’sflexibility. aV-groovingbitistypicallyusedtocreate abird’s-mouthjoint. Combinationprofilebitsofferaneconomicalalternativetobuyingseveralindividual bits.while smallerprofilescanbeusedforshaping decorativeflutesinapilasterorcolumn (seethetopphotoonp.grooves areoftenusedindrawersidestoaccommodatethedrawerbottom.etc.Surprisingly.Forexample. All About Bits 35 .Some arequitelargeandrequireapowerfultablemountedroutertosafelyoperatethem.Althoughboth groovesanddadoesareidenticallyshaped square-sidechannels.Infact.acoreboxbit createsatypeofgroove.andadadoperpendiculartothegrain.agroovetechnically runsparalleltothegrain.section 2 Complex profile bits create two or more shapes in one pass. Edge-formingbitsareavailableina varietyofsizesinHSSandcarbide.36).Forexample.Andwhena dividerandpartitionjoinatanintersection. Othersconsistofacombinationoftwoprofilesthatcreateacomplexmolding.)ononeshank. Therearevariationsonthestandard groovingbit.roundovers. multi-profilebitshaveallthebasicshapes (beads.Thiselegantjointis simpletoexecutewithrouterbitsandlooks When their height and cutting depth are adjusted. Grooving Bits Groovesanddadoesarewidelyusedin woodworkingprojects.Largecoreboxbits areusedtocreatecovesforamolding. these bits can produce a number of different profiles. All of these bits shape a type of groove useful for joinery.
refined. Straight bits come in various sizes and configurations.especiallycomparedtoasquare groovefromastandardgroovingbit.down-cut. Thebeststraightbitshaveskewedcuttingedgesthatcreateasmoothsurfacefree ofburningandtearout.Asthenameimplies.hasaunique flutedesignthatcleanlyshearsthrough eventoughendgrain. Straight Bits Straightbitsareamongthemostuseful bitsyoucanown.Andwhenyou’re cuttingortrimminginatable-mounted router.Butforthesmoothestsurface.you’llprobablyfindtheup-cutstyle themostuseful.Butthat’snotall: Spiralbitsaresuperiorformortisingbecause thespiralflutesactuallyliftthechipsfrom themortiseforafastercutwithlessloadon therouter. Therearethreetypesofspiralbits: up-cut.Flush-trim bitsareidealforquicklyandaccurately trimmingtheexcessedgesofafaceframe flushwithacabinet(seethedrawingonthe facingpage).Aspiralbit.chooseaspiralbit. allstraightbitsaredesignedforcutting straight-sidedgroovesordadoes.Somearedesignedspecifically fortrimmingplasticlaminate(seetheright photoonthefacingpage).section 2 Corebox bits can be used to create decorative flutes.andspiral- straightbitsareallavailablewithball- bearingpilotsforflushtrimming(seethe leftphotoonthefacingpage). 36 All About Bits .Thespiralingflutesof anup-cutbitwillhelpclearawaythecut chipsduringmortising.andcompression. Straight. The spiral bit at left will create a smoother finish than the straightflute bit at right.Theywill createafinishedsurfacemuchsmoother thanthatfromasaw.thebitwillsafelypullthestock towardthetablesurfaceratherthanpushing itupward.skewed-straight.Of these. whichresemblesatwistdrill.
All About Bits 37 . skewed flutes. Flush-trim bits are available with (from left) straight flutes. Flush-trimming bit Router table These flush-trim bits are specifically designed for trimming plastic laminates. and spiral flutes. or double-stick tape. Workpiece Bearing follows the template. screws.section 2 FlUsh-triM Bit Template can be attached with brads.
slot-cuttingbitscuta square-sidedgroove.Adjustablestackingcuttersareavailable too.you justremoveanutandaddorsubtractcutters.section 2 PAttern Bit Template Workpiece Flush-trimming bit Bearing follows the template. Work is held to the template with toggle clamps and/or fasteners. Router table Slot-Cutting Bits Likestraightbits. 38 All About Bits .) Slot-cuttingbitsareavailableinvarious sizes.What’sthesignificance? Slot-cuttingbitscancutagroovealonga curvededge.Straightbitscan’t(seethetopleft photoonthefacingpage.muchlikeadadoheadfora tablesaw.yousimplyturn aknurledscrewtoquicklyandeasilyadjust thebit(seethebottomleftphotoonthe facingpage). Patternbitsarestraightbitswithabearing attheshankendofthebit(seethedrawing above). Todeterminethedepthofthegroove.you simplychooseaguidebearingofasuitable diameter.Toadjustthecuttingwidth. Screws are added for heavier cuts in dense woods.suchasthetoprailinanarched door.There’snoneedtoremovethe Adding a bearing on the shank allows you to position the template above or below the work.Thedifferenceisthata slot-cuttingbitcutsagrooveparalleltothe routerbaseplate.A lockcollarandsetscrewholdtheguidebearinginposition.forcuttinggroovesofdifferentwidths.Withthiscleverdesign.Slotcuttersarealsoavailablein astackingset.Thisstyleofbitisperfectforflushtrimmingcurvedstockwithatemplate.
rabbet- Thereareanumberofdifferentstylesof bitsforproducingaccuratejoinerywithyour ingbitscanbefoundineverymanufacturer’s lineup.alongtheedgeofaboard.Arabbetbitsetisextremelyversatile.Becauserabbets areusedsoofteninwoodworking. overlaydrawerfront. Thisuniquebitusestwomatingcuttersthatinterlock. The turn of a dial easily adjusts this slot cutter.Acompressionspring betweenthetwopushesthemapartwhile adjustingthebitforthedesiredsetting. router. asitcomescompletewithanincremen- tallysizedstackofguidebearings.Probablythemostcommonisthe rabbetingbit. ortocreatealipalongtheedgeofahalf- Joinery Bits By swapping the bearing.Like orrabbet. you can change the cutting depth of this rabbeting bit.thebestrabbetbitshave usedtoaccommodateadoororbackboard skewedcuttingedges.Rabbetbitscutasquarerecess.section 2 This large rabbet bit can make smooth rabbets of any size. nut.often straightbits. A slot-cutting bit will cut a groove into a curved edge. All About Bits 39 .
youwouldhave Afterwards.Thisis alargebitthatshouldbelimitedtouseina routertable.Isawthetailsbyhandto tobevelthepaneledgeswithyourtablesaw.section 2 Dovetail bits cut the tapered pins and tails of this timehonored joint. ifyoudidn’townashaper.AbearingonthebitshankorabushFinger joint bitscutrowsofinterlockingattachedtothebaseoftherouterguides ing“fingers”forjoiningstockend-to-end.Ifirst Panel-Raising Bits layoutthedovetailintheusualmanner. fitthepins. toremovethewastebetweenthepins. inherenttothejointbreakseasily. 40 All About Bits .Adrawerlockjoint creatingtheinterlockingtailsandpinsfound appearsdeceptivelystrong. 137.Ifyou choosetousethisjoinerybit.theideabehindafinger-joint ➤ See “ Commercial Dovetail Jigs” on p.untilrecently. Anotherpopularbitisthedrawerlockbit. RaisedpanelsareapopularelementinfurThenIuseadovetailbitandroutfreehand nitureandcabinets.youmaywant mostcommonly7and14degrees. therouterbitalongthe“fingers”ofatemBecauseendgraindoesn’tcreateastrong platethatispartofthejig. toreserveitsusefordrawersthatreceive Manywoodworkersusedovetailbitswith littleabuse. gluebond.ityieldsadovetailjoint availableinseveralsizesandshapes(seethe withahand-cutappearance(seethetop topleftphotoonthefacingpage).Theshortgrain ondovetailjoints.Dovetailbitscanbepurchasedinvariousdiametersandpitchangles.yet Nowthereareanumberofpanel-raisingbits unlikethejigs. leftphotoonp.135). ajig. These bits are specially designed for use with dovetail jigs. Ifyouprefertocutdovetailsbyhand.However. youmightenjoyamethodIuse.Thismethodisefficient. usedtocreateasimpleinterlockbetween Dovetail bitscutawedge-shapedslotfor matingdrawerparts. bitistojoinlong-grainsurfaces.
Iwouldsticktousingthesmoother-cutting horizontalbits.theydon’tcutassmoothlyas traditionalpanel-raisingbits.othersuse aninvertedTthatundercutsthelettersto makethemstandoutfromthebackground ofthesign.routerbitsforshaping theedgeofapanelarequitelarge.Itcomesdown tobitgeometry:Small-diameterbitsare toosmalltoincorporatetheeffectivecuttingangleusedbylargerbits. Theytypicallyconsistoftwocomplementary bitsthatmakeacomplexjoint. Vertical panel-raising bitsaredesigned tocutapanelfedverticallyratherthan horizontallyontheroutertable.Although theycanbeusedwithroutersofsmaller horsepower.Shaping thestickingalsocutsapanelgroove. Matched Sets Matchedsetshavebecomeverypopular. 199. Matching stile-andrail bits are used for making cabinet doors.Oneofthetwo bitsisusedtomakeadecorativeprofile (sometimesreferredtoas“sticking”)along theinsideedgesofadoorframe.ThemostcommonsignmakingbitsuseaVprofile.section 2 The vertical panel bit at left has a smaller diameter than the horizontal bit at right. This panel-raising bit should only be used in a router table.Mostpanel bitscomeequippedwithaguidebearingfor shapingarchedpanels. Sign-Making and Carving Bits Routerbitsforsignmakinghaveaguide bearingmountedontheshaftwithalock collartoholditinplace.So.These bitsdeserveyourrespectandshouldonlybe usedinaroutertablewithavariable-speed routerrunningatalowerrpm. ➤ See “Raised Panel” on p. Asyoucanimagine.unlessyou plantobeveltheedgeofacooperedpanel.Thesebitsare All About Bits 41 .set formakingpaneleddoors.Oneexample isthecope-and-stick.orstile-and-rail. designedtofollowtheedgeoftemplates toformletters.
Theideaisto puttogetheraneconomicalassortmentof edge-formingprofilesthatuseoneshank. Specialty Bits Thereareanumberofspecialtybitsfrom whichtochoose.Thissetshapesthematching coveandthumbnailprofilesondrop-leaf tableedges.andprecise. Anewerstyleofinterchangeablebituses replaceable carbide inserts. or“light.Thecopeisa reverseprofileofthesticking. Thecomplementarybitinthesetcutsthe copeontheendsoftherails. Stillanotherstyleofmatchingbitsisthe drop-leafset. Similarsetsareavailableformaking dividedlightdoors.And ifyouglueaplywoodpanelintotheframe.adividedlightdoorsetshapesadecorativestickingalongtheedgesofthedoor frame.Thisstyleofsetcutsarabbetinstead ofapanelgroovetoacceptaglasspane.section 2 A pair of bits can produce a complex molding or a dropleaf edge.Theinsertsare purchasedinmatchingpairsthatfasten securelyintothebodyofthebit.Theprofilesallowtheuseof aspecialoffsethingetoattachtheleafto thetable. This bit uses interchangeable cutters.Onedesignisbest describedasadiminutiveshapercutter boredtofitthebitshank.ashorttenonisalsocuttofitin thepanelgroove.Alongwith thecope.Ifyou’reonatightbud- 42 All About Bits get. itwillalsobestrong.Buying onebodyandseveralinsertknivesofvarious profilesallowsyoutobuildanassortment ofshapeseconomically(seethetopphoto onthefacingpage). These bits cut cost by sharing the same shank.Thetwo-piecesetmakes doormakingquick. .Likethecope-and-stick set.”Dividedlightdoorsetsarevery popularformakingdoorsforfurnitureor cabinetsthatdisplaycontents.youmaywanttoconsiderbitsthatuse interchangeablecutters.simple.
All About Bits 43 . This bit features disposable carbide inserts. Custom Profiles Althoughtherearecertainlymanymore profilestochoosefrom. you may want to consider an inexpensive HSS bit.suchasroutingabrasivesheetstock.manysaw-sharpeningshopscan grindacustomrouterbit.completewith carbidetips. For a custom profile.Ifthat’sthecase.thenconsider high-speedsteel.Theinsertshave twoormorecuttingedgesandaredesigned toberepositionedwhenthecuttingedge becomesworn.acustomHSSbit isaffordable. However.section 2 An innovative bit features a mechanical interlock system to secure the replaceable carbide inserts.itholdsanedgewhenused exclusivelyonnaturalwoodandiseasier tosharpenthancarbide.therearestilltimes whenyoumaynotfindtheshapeyouneed. Anotherstyleofinsertbitisdesignedspecificallyforhigh-wearsituations.Thisensuresthatthecutting diameterremainsconstant.Onceallthesharpedgesare used.Forashortrun ofaspecialmolding.Althoughitwearsfaster thancarbide.theknivesarereplacedratherthan resharpened.
suchastheCrown MoldingSetfromCMT®.abird’s-mouthjoint canbecreated. Creative Uses for Bits Ifyou’recreative. you can produce either shape here with the same bit. This bit can produce an edge bead or a corner bead.AndwhenusedinconjunctionwithaV-bit. Achamferbitistypicallyusedtotaper anoctagonalpostorlegorjusttoremovea hard. Beadingbitscanbeusedforanedge beadoracornerbead.Often. 44 All About Bits .Othertimes.squareedge.Andbyremoving theguidebearingsandsometimeseven By rotating the profile 90 degrees.For example.acommontechniquewith ogeebits.you’lloftenfindseveral usesforthesameone. This profile is inverted to shape areas that ordinary bits can’t. ➤ See “Bird’s Mouth” on p. Thisallowsyoutoshapesegmentsofalarge.switchingtoalargerbearingona beadingbitwillconvertittoaroundover bit. 172. complexmoldingthatwouldbeimpossible withordinaryrouterbits.justchangingbearingsizeswill altertheshapeordepthoftheprofile. Swapping the bearing on a roundover bit converts the shape to a beading bit.section 2 Somespecialtybits.youcancreatea reverseogee.youcanaltertheshape ofthefinishedprofilebyrotatingthemolding90degrees.usestandard profilesthatareinvertedonthebitshank.Bychangingthepositioninwhich themoldingisapplied.whichisobviouslya greatwaytoextendyourwoodworkingbudget.
Soft-start routershaveelectronicsthatcausearouterto developfullspeedoverthecourseofabout onesecond. Useasoft-startrouter.Andwhen youcomparethesizeofthesehugebitsto theirmuchsmallerpredecessorsof20years ago.especially ifequippedwithalargebit.Sobesafeandrunthese bitsslowly(seethetopphotoonp.whichallbuteliminatesthejerk.Ofcourse.46).hereare someguidelines: Alwaysfollowthemanufacturer’s guidelines.Goingfromzero to20.Large-diameterbitsrun atthesamerpmassmallbitshaveamuch higherrimspeed.000rpminafractionofasecond causesaroutertojerksuddenly. Raisedpanelbitsandcope-and-sticksetsare justacoupleofexamplesofthelargerouter bitsthathavebecomeavailabletomeetthe demandsoftoday’swoodworkers. Mounttherouterinatable.youcannowcreatemanycutswith yourrouterthatwereoncedonebyashaper.andsoarethecutters. Lowertherpm.steadyworksur- facetosupporttherouterandthelarge. grindingawaythemountingstud. Large Bit Safety Shapersareexpensive.Butasthesizesofrouterbitshave grown.Somebits arejusttoolargeforhandrouting.theydeserveyourrespect. Checkwiththebitmanufacturerforasuggestedspeed.section 2 Sometimes the bearing and even the mounting stud can obstruct the desired cut. Large bits should only be run in a router table.Holda panel-raisingbitinyourhand. spinningbit.Touselargebitssafely. All About Bits 45 .you canincreasetheversatilityofabit.that’salot ofsteelandcarbidetospininahigh-speed router.Arouter tableprovidesamassive.you’llneedarouter withelectronicvariablespeed(EVS). The bearing stud on this bit was purposely ground away to avoid marring the adjacent cove.
Infact. This guard will shield your hands from large panelraising bits.Ifbitsaretossedtogetherinadrawer.providesaprotectivebarrierbetweenyourhands andthebit.listen totherouteranddon’tbogitdownbyremovingtoomuchstockatonce.Soit makessensetotakegoodcareofthem. Bit Storage. Useaguard.Itisalsoeasytosetupanduse.And ifyourfenceisn’tequippedwithaT-slot.Dependingonhowoftenyou useit.Dirtand resinswillcommonlybuildupalongthecuttingedges.youmaynoteverneedtopurchasea replacement.It simplyfastenstotheT-slotsinthefence. and Sharpening Routerbitsarenotinexpensive. ahigh-qualityrouterbitwilllastformany years. This drawer protects the carbide and makes it easy to locate the bit you need. Properstorageiscriticaltothelifeofa routerbit.Clearplasticboxescompartmentalized forfishingtackleorsmalldie-castcarsare idealstoragecontainers(seethetopleftphoto onthefacingpage).withcare.Therearea numberoftoolcleanersavailablethatwilleasily dissolvethebuildupwithoutdamagingthecarbideorbrazing(seethetoprightphotoonthe facingpage). Uselightcuts.Heavycutscanleadto kickbackandoverheatingoftheroutermotor.section 2 This multi-speed router can be slowed down for use with large bits.Awell-designedguard. Forbestresults.adozenorso canadduptoseveralhundreddollars.suchas thePanel-LocguardfromBench-Dog®. thebrittleedgesofthecarbidewillbedamaged. 46 All About Bits .Bitsshouldbestoredinarackor compartmentalizedboxtokeepthemsepa- rate.takeseverallightcuts. It’salsoimportanttokeepbitsclean.the Panel-Loccomeswithonethateasilyattaches toyourexistingfence.Evensuper-duty15-amp routersdon’thavethepowertomakeheavy cutsinasinglepass. Cleaning.causingabittooverheat.
Theirpricesarereasonable. All About Bits 47 .skill. Forthebestpossiblegripinthecollet. It’s a good idea to keep an assortment of extra bit parts on hand. Surface rust should be removed with steel wool or a synthetic abrasive pad. Routerbitswilloftenlastlongerthan theirtinyguidebearings.because thesolventwillpenetratethesealanddissolvethebearinggrease. Sharpeningyourrouterbitsisbestleftto aprofessionalsharpeningshop.the shankofabitshouldbesmoothandpolished.Youcanpolishthesteelshankswith finesteelwooloramildplasticabrasivepad.sawblades.it’stimetoreplaceit.andtheyhavetheknowledge.section 2 A commercial bit cleaner will dissolve built-up pitch on a bit.and equipmenttosharpenthetoolscorrectly.Isendallmy tooling—includingplanerknives.erraticmovement. A storage case keeps the bits separate to protect the carbide tips. Attemptingtohonetheedgesmaychange orevenruinthegeometry.androuterbits—toalocal professionalshop.Whenabearing beginstoshowsignsofrough.Attemptingto prolongthelifeofabearingbysoakingitin asolventwillonlyshortenitslife.Thecutting geometryofmostrouterbitsiscomplex.shaper cutters.
Insert the bit fully and then withdraw it approximately 1⁄ 8 in. New bits often have a thin coat of grease on the shank. B c 48 All About Bits . Position the wrench on the router against the benchtop for leverage as you apply pressure to the wrench on the collet nut (c). Make certain it grips the shank and not the radius at the base of the A shank (A). so that the collet makes contact only on the shank (B). it simply compresses and squeezes the bit. pitch. Finally. Most routers have two wrenches. As you tighten the collet. This should be removed with mineral spirits. make certain that the bit shank is smooth and free of rust.s e tt i n g U P B i t s changing Bits Before installing a bit in a router. or burrs. snug the collet firmly against the bit shank by tightening the collet nut.
as you’ll scar the bit shank. Replace the cap screw (F) and gently tighten it. (g). place a wrench on the router collet to prevent it from rotating. such as rabbeting bits. Next. Also. A B c D e F g All About Bits 49 . When replacing the bearing. Insert most of the bit shank (B) and tighten the collet firmly (c).s e tt i n g U P B i t s changing Bearings Why change bearings? A good-quality bit will often outlive the bearing. come supplied with several bearings so that you can alter the cutting depth. A bearing that feels rough as you spin it or one that whines during use should be replaced. some bits. make sure that the bearing shield is in place (e). To change a bearing. and remove the tiny cap screw with an Allen wrench (D). Resist the temptation to grip the bit shank with pliers. you’ll want to first secure the bit in a collet (A).
Begin by mounting the cutter in a router (B) and locking it in place (c). and a nut holds all the parts onto the bit shaft.s e tt i n g U P B i t s Adjusting a stacking Bit A stacking bit has cutters of various widths that can be used alone or in combination to create a groove or a pair of parallel grooves (A). Resist any temptation to grasp the bit shank with pliers or place it in the jaws of a vise. A A guide bearing is included for template or curved work. B c D F e 50 All About Bits . Spacers are used to control the width of the cut and prevent the carbide tips from making contact. which will damage the smooth surface of the shank.
g h i J K All About Bits 51 . orienting the carbide tips so they don’t touch (h). lock the nut firmly in position (K). When stacking the cutters on the bit shank. make certain that the teeth are positioned to rotate counterclockwise as you’re facing the end of the shank (F). Now place the washer on the shaft (i) and replace the nut (J). Place a spacer between cutters (g). Finally. Now. place a wrench on the router and position it against the bench surface for leverage (D).s e tt i n g U P B i t s To remove the nut on the bit. carefully remove the cutter (e).
youhave. straightandcurvedmoldings.andavariety ofcomplexjoints.Thesmall.)Byinvertinga routerandmountingitinatable.suchasraisedpanels. 67) Jointing Fence (p.arealsoeasier toshapebecausethetablesurfaceprovides plentyofsupport. Router Table Designs Likeroutersandbits. 75) ➤ ➤ ➤ o other accessorywilladdmore versatilitytoyourrouterthana routertable(asshowninthetop photoonthefacingpage.canbeusedonlywitha routertable.storageforaccessories. inessence.stamped-steel routertablesofafewyearsagohavebeen replacedbylarge.it’seasiertoshapesmall piecesonatablethantoholdandbalance therouteroverasmallworkpiece.suchasmoldings. 52 . Thereareotheradvantagesgainedby usingaroutertableinsteadofahandheld router. 71) Two-Dollar Top (p. 70) Support Stand (p. lightweight. 69) ’ Zero-Clearance Fence (p.youcan shapelargeprofiles.routertableshave comealongwayinrecentyears.suchascope-and-sticksetsand panel-raisingbits.vibration-prone. 72) Making a Sled (p.manylargeprofilebits.Forexample.SECTION 3 Router Tables Router Table Fences ➤ ➤ Benchtop Router Table ➤ Router Table Sled ➤ Simple Fence (p.createdamini-shaper. completewithfeaturessuchasaccessible electricalswitches. 68) ‘L Fence (p.Inaddition.Long N workpieces.sturdycabinetmodels.Withthe smallinvestmentofaroutertable.
A stationaryroutertableisdefinitelythebest choiceifyouplantodoalotofrouting.Youcan alsousethespaceunderneathforstorage.too.SECTION 3 A router table adds tremendous versatility to your router.if you’reonabudget.Thebestfencesare arrow-straightaluminumextrusionswith T-slotsformountingaccessoryguardsand featherboards. Andifyoudojobsitework. thenastationaryroutertableisdefinitely thewaytogo. a benchtop router table can conserve valuable space and be easily transported to a job site.Stationaryroutertables havelargetopsforsupportoftheworkand extraweighttominimizevibration. Benchtop Router Tables Abenchtoproutertablewillofferyouthe advantagesoftableroutingwithouttaking upmorefloorspaceinanalreadycramped shop.3-hprouter underthetopandyou’llhaveahigh-performancepowertool.Mountalarge. Let’stakeacloserlookatyouroptions.thebestmodelsareloaded Like all benchtop tools. Router Tables 53 .you canpurchasearoutertablewingthatbolts ontothetopofyourtablesaw. anddustcollection. Youcanevenpurchasecast-ironand phenolictopsthateliminatesagfromheavy routers. Stationary Router Tables Ifyouhavethefloorspaceinyourshop.thereduced weightandcompactsizemakeabenchtop routertabletrulyportable.Eventhough they’resmall.Benchtoproutertablesaretypically moreaffordablethanstationarymodels.Ofcourse.Andifyouhavelimitedspace.Fenceshaveseenvast improvements.youcanbuildatablefor aminimalinvestmentoftimeandmoney.
Thebest benchtoproutertablesincludeazero- clearancealuminumextrusionfence.a dust-collectionport. For a few dollars and a weekend of your time. the nominal cost of buying a quality top and fence provides you with extra time for woodworking.SECTION 3 ➤ BuIlDINg vS.yetsolidfencelocks.Wingtablesreplacethe extensionwingonyourtablesawwithout limitingtheuseofthesaw. although not complicated. And don’t feel that you have to blow your woodworking budget to have a sturdy. You may be wondering—why not just build a router table? My recommendation? Buy the top. Router tabletops. It’sthetablethatprovidesareferencesurface. Themostimportantaspectofanyrouter tableisitssurfaceflatness.youmaywanttoconsider awing-typetable. This space-saving cast-iron top bolts to the top of your tablesaw. expensive tables will do. can be somewhat time-consuming to construct. withfeaturesthatenablethemtogoheadto-headwiththefloormodels. you can construct a modest yet sturdy table that’s capable of doing much of what the large. the best support stand is one that you build yourself. And you’ll need a fence as well.Thinkofitas theultimateupgradeofyourtablesaw. However.andprovidesasurfaceonwhichto 54 Router Tables . BuyINg Open the pages of almost any woodworking catalog and you’ll see an enormous selection of router tables.supportsthe router.supportstheworkpiece.andamitergaugeslot forend-grainrouting. For most woodworkers.Wingtables arecastirontoreducevibrationandare outfittedwithahigh-qualityfencewith simple. You can customize it to your height and equip it with doors and drawers for storage of all the stuff that you use with your router.Strippedtothe essentials.aroutertableisjustaflattopwith aninvertedroutersuspendedunderneath. useful table. Tablesaw Wing Tables Ifyou’relookingtosavespacewithoutlosingconvenience. The Top This shopmade router table and sled are just as capable as many commercial models. and then build a cabinet to support it. A sturdy yet inexpensive top was constructed from kitchen sink cutouts.
laminatetwopiecesof 3⁄4-in. Plywoodisagoodchoicebecauseitslaminatedpliesprovidestiffnessandstability.MDF.the worstchoiceyoucanmakeisnaturalwood. Particleboard and MDFareflatand heavy—goodqualitiesforatop. secureafence. phenolic. a miter gauge slot. Themostimportantcomponentina routertable.001 in.laminatetwopieces together.theextraweightandthicknesswill absorbvibrationandresistsagging.lookfor onethatfeaturesametalframeworkwith built-inlevelingscrewstosupporttherouter insertplate.thetopcanalsobetheAchilles heeloftheentiresystem. anditeasilywarpswhentherelativehumiditychanges.Forastifftopthatresistssagging.particleboard.Ifyouplan tobuildthetopyourself. As this simple plywood stand shows. This sturdy top features accessory T-slots.Thisdesigneliminatesthewear Router Tables 55 .soit’simportanttocover bothfaceswithplasticlaminate. Table Materials Thebestroutertabletopisonethatstays strongandflatovertime.heavyrouters.andcastiron. includingplywood.andyoucanoftenbuy apartialsheetofplywoodatyourlocalhome supplycenter. theinsertplate. there’s no need to spend a lot of money to get started with table routing. and insert-plate leveling screws.-thickplywoodtogether.Giventhat.andpossiblyarouterlift mechanismwithabuilt-inheightgauge.Therearemoresuitableoptions.Solet’stakea lookatmaterialchoicesfortops.Thetopconsistsofthetable.These materialscanwarp.Ifyouplan topurchaseaparticleboardtop.whichwillprovidethickness andstrengthatthecutout.SECTION 3 A micro-dial makes it easy to make height adjustments as fine as . Itlackssufficientstiffnessacrossthegrain.That’sbecause manytopssagundertheweightoftoday’s high-powered.It’s relativelyinexpensive.
Phenolicismadebylaminatinglayersof resin-impregnatedpaperorfabric. Thebaseplateallowsyoutoquicklyliftthe routeroutofthetableformakingheight adjustmentsandbitchanges(seethebottom rightphotoabove). precise adjustment.resistswarping.Thebaseplatesitswithinarecessinthetabletop. Forbeststocksupportwhenyou’rerouting. A baseplate gives you quick access to the router for adjustments and bit changes.Heatand pressureisappliedtocausepolymerization.makingitwellsuitedtothejob. andhassufficientstrengthandstiffnessto resistsaggingundertheweightofaheavy router. transformingthelayersintoalaminated plastic.Somecommercial cast-irontopsaredesignedtobeusedon eitherafreestandingroutertableorasan extensionwingofyourtablesaw.SECTION 3 Baseplates are available in plastic. This phenolic table features a lift with a built-in crank for fast.Phenolicwearswell. phenolic.instead ofsimplydrillingabitaccessholeinthetop.dense. Cast-irontopsareavailablefromseveral manufacturers. Baseplate Options Mostcommerciallyavailablerouter-table topsfeaturearectangularbaseplatefrom whichtherouterissuspended.thebitopeninginthebaseplateshould suitthesizeofbityou’reusingwithoutleavingalargespacearounditsperimeter. 56 Ifyou’remakingyourowntop.Some baseplatesareoutfittedwithinsertringsthat Router Tables . thatwouldotherwiseoccurontheparticleboardfromthelevelingscrewsintheinsert plate.you’llprobablywanttouseabaseplateaswell.Castironwearsextremely wellandisstiff.Itisveryhard.It’sagreatchoiceforthejob. andstrong. and aluminum.which helpsreducevibration.strong. Phenolicisarelativenewcomeramong router-tabletops.andheavy.
Itusually requiresthatyoueitherreachunderneaththe tableorremovetheheavyrouter.Youcanpurchasea baseplatecompletewithmountingholes.aluminumbaseplatesaretypicallyavailablewith insertrings. Aluminumisanothergoodchoicefora baseplatematerial. Commercialbaseplatesareavailablein severaldifferentmaterials.includingaluminumandvariousplastics. allowyoutoquicklyadjustthebitopening.or baseplate comes with an insert ring.forcingyoutoswitchbaseplates whenchangingfromaverylarge-diameter bittoasmallone.Also.this canquicklybecomeatime-consumingchore.SECTION 3 This universal baseplate fits virtually every router without drilling.anindustriallaminatedplastic mentionedearlier.isthebestchoicefora plasticbaseplatebecauseofitsstrengthand stiffness.Althoughitdoesn’thavethe stiffnessofphenolic.Tosolve Router Tables 57 .Asyoucanimagine. This aluminum A phenolic baseplate includes insert rings for minimizing the bit opening. youcanmakeyourown.somebaseplatesdon’thave insertrings. Phenolic.Aluminumhasgreater stiffnessthanmostplastics.acrylicworkswellwith allbuttheheaviestroutersandisusually availableatyourlocalglassshop. Unfortunately. Lifts Amajordrawbackofroutertableshasalways beentheawkwardnessofchangingbitsand makingbitheightadjustments. Acrylicisalsoagoodchoiceofplastics forbaseplates.toresistsagging fromtheweightofaheavyrouter.
socket driver 9/16-in.Thelift.Instead.as showninthedrawingbelow.somemanufacturersnowoffer routerliftstomaketheseadjustmentsfast.Routerliftsusea speedwrenchoracrank(seethetopright photoonthefacingpage)formakingheight adjustmentsfromthetopwithouthavingto reachunderneath. Routerliftseliminatetheneedforthe routerbase.SECTION 3 thisproblem. which incorporates a built-in lift mechanism.theroutermotorisfasteneddirectlyintothecarriageofthelift.Theliftsalsoadd extraweight. and.androutermotorbecomeoneunit.itdoes notneedtoberemoved. ROuTER lIFT 3/8-in.onceinstalledinthetabletop. can be adjusted from above when used in a router table. convenient.justcrank A lift is the ultimate upgrade for any router table.Tochangebits.whichhelpslimitvibration.andaccurate.baseplate. deep-well socket Fine-adjustment scale Insert plate Carriage Height-adjustment access hole Carriage lock Anti-backlash adjustment This unique plunge router. Lead screw Guide posts 58 Router Tables .
This lift features a dust collection fitting under the table.Some routertablescomeequippedwithabuilt-in liftandintegraldustcollection. A precision lift comes with a full set of insert rings.Arouter liftprovidestheultimateconversionofyour routertableintoatruestationarypowertool.Toadaptthesystemfora largebit.routerliftsuseinsertringstoeliminatetheneedtoswapoutbaseplates. themotorup.andyou’llhaveeasyaccessto thebitandcollet. This top includes a built-in lift and micrometer height adjustment.SECTION 3 A lift allows for fast bit changes and adjustments from above the table. Router Tables 59 .
The Fence Themostcommonmethodforguidingcuts ontheroutertableistouseafence. This shop vacuum can be switched to power up automatically when you start the router.Cleanupisasnap too.Aluminumfences arelightweight.becauseyoucanattachadust-collection hook-updirectlytothebackofthefence. Commercialfencesaretypicallymade fromextrudedaluminum.youcaneasilyconstructafence withmoresupportandfeaturesbyattaching twostripsofplywoodatrightanglestoeach other.Bracesaddedbehindthefencewill stiffenitandkeepit90degreestothetable surface. usingaroutertableandfenceoffersgreater controlandconvenience. The graduations on this fence help with making fine adjustments to the setup.MDFinsertsinthefaceofthe fencesadjustlaterallytoaccommodatedifferentbitdiametersandcanbecuttocre- .aplankand apairofC-clampswillservethepurpose. 60 Router Tables However.oranoverarm guide.andincludeT-slots forquickandeasyattachmentofguardsand accessories.Besidesguidingthe cut. Aroutertablefencedoesn’thavetobe elaborateorexpensivetowork.you’llfindthat for attachment to a router table fence.strong.aguidebearing.Ifyou’re Various dust-collection fittings are available usedtohandheldrouting.thefenceprovidesaplacetopositiona guardandfeatherboards.a mitergauge.SECTION 3 guiding Cuts Therearefourtoolsforguidingthecut whenyouusearoutertable:thefence.
minor tearout on trailing edge is to be expected.Ifyoumakeyourowntop. The Miter Gauge Themitergaugeprovidessupportwhen you’reshapingtheendsofnarrowstock suchasdoorrails.Whenusingamiter gauge.SECTION 3 ROuTINg END gRaIN Tearout will occur here.it’sstillimportanttouseafence.you’llneedagroove inthetopoftheroutertabletoguideitin astraightpath. Router Tables 61 . To minimize tearout: 1.The fenceservesasaguardtocovertheunused areaofthebit(seethedrawingabove). 3.ifyouplanto usethemitergauge. ateazero-clearanceopening. you’llprobablywanttopurchaseanaluminuminsertforthemiter-gaugegroove forresistancetowear.Commercial fencesalsohavebuilt-inclampstosecurely lockthemtothetable. Shape end grain first. Use miter gauge with backup board. 2. BIR 02 A miter gauge is useful when routing the ends of narrow stock. Then shape edges of stock or rip to width.Ofcourse. Feed direction Rotation Grain When routing end grain.
preventing stock from moving laterally. so starting pin is not necessary. A starting pin provides a fulcrum when you’re routing curves.justalignthefencesothatitistangenttothebearing. plywood Toggle clamps hold stock to template.The guidebearingevenhelpswhenusedwiththe fence. OvERaRm guIDE Stock Template extends beyond workpiece.SECTION 3 Guide Bearing Theguidebearingisoneofthebestguide toolsforshapingfreeformcurvesandarcs.it’simportanttousea startingpin. Whenshapingcurvedstockwiththe bearingasaguide.extendthetemplatebeyondthe work. Bit rotation Feed direction Block resists thrust of bit.thebearingcan followapatternortheworkpieceitself.sothatitcontactsthebearingbefore theworkcontactsthecuttingedgeofthebit. Ifyou’reshapingcurvedstockwitha template.Thismakessettingthe fencefastandaccurate. 62 Router Tables . 3/4-in. TEmplaTE ROuTINg Stop blocks are glued and screwed to base of template.Thestartingpinthreadsintoa holeinthetabletopandprovidesafulcrum tosafelylevertheworkpieceintothespinningbit.thebitcan grabthestockandpullitfromyourgrasp. Thismethodprovidesasmoothentryinto thecutwithoutastartingpin(asshownin thedrawingatleft).Withoutastartingpin. Aswithhandheldrouting.
andaccessories.Thishelpspreventkickback andoffersgreatercontrolandasmoother cut.Plus.aswhencovingagooseneckmolding.Bybuilding thebase.ThePanel-LocbarrierguardbyBench Dogisalargealuminumextrusiondesigned ➤ See “Curve with Template” on p. A T-slot in a router table fence allows attachment of guards.SECTION 3 Overarm Guide Anoverarmguide(asshowninthebottom rightdrawingonthefacingpage). Unlessyourshophaslotsofroomtospare. A custom cabinet provides plenty of storage for bits and accessories. This unique guard is effective when you’re routing curved stock. and other accessories.Thespace belowthetableisanidealstorageareafor bits.) Guardsprovideabarrierbetweenyour handsandthespinningbit.youcancustomizeitsheightand encloseittocreateausefulstoragearea.youcanaddaT-track.theoverarmguide canbepositionedoff-centertothebit.themostimportantaresafety devicessuchasguardsandfeatherboards.works muchlikeabearing.Thedifferenceisthat unlikeaguidebearing. Router Table accessories Ofalltheaccessoriesyoucanaddtoyour routertable.wrenches.the addedweightofacabinet-stylebase(and itscontents)addstothestabilityofthe routertable. Manyofthesearedesignedtofastentoa T-slotinthefence. you’llprobablywanttoavoidmountingthe toponanopenbaseorlegset.thebestbase isonethatyoubuildyourself. Router Tables 63 .This allowsyoutomakeinternalcutsoncurved stock.(Ifyourfencedoesn’t haveaT-slot. 215.whilefeather- boardsholdthestockfirmlyagainstthe fenceandtable. featherboards. Base Designs Evenifyouchoosetopurchaseatopand fenceforyourroutertable.
This guard provides an effective barrier when you’re using large bits.
A featherboard doubles as a stop block.
An external switch eliminates groping under the table for the power switch on the router.
forshapingpanels.Theheavyextrusion shieldslargepanel-raisingbitsfromyour handswhileworkingasahold-down tokeepthepanelfirmlypositionedon thetable. Otherworthyaccessoriesincludestop blocksusedtolimitkickbackwhenyou’re makingstoppedcuts,andanexteriorpower switch,whicheliminatesgropingunderthe tablefortheswitchontherouter.
While providing a uniform feed rate, this scaled-down power feeder keeps your hands clear of the bit.
Oneofthebestaccessoriesyoucanaddto yourroutertableisapowerfeeder.Thistool keepsyourhandssafelydistancedfromthe bit,whiletheconstantfeedrateprovidesa smoother,moreuniformsurfacethanyou canachievebyhandfeeding.Todaythereare small,lightweightfeedersthatareperfectly suitedforroutertableuse.
Feathers measure 1/8 in. wide by 5 in. long and are cut with a wide blade in the bandsaw. 30ϒ 6 in.
Eye and hearing protection are critical when you’re using routers.
Router Table Safety
Althoughmostrouterbitsaresmall,routers andbitsdeserveyourattentionandrespect. Aswithallpowertools,youcanenjoythem safelybyfollowingafewsafetyguidelines: • arge-diameterbitsareforuseonlyin L aroutertable.Usingbitsoveronein.in diameterinahandheldroutercaneasily causeyoutolosecontrol. • lwaysweareyeandhearingprotection. A
16 in. to 18 in.
• akelightcuts.Heavycutsinvitekickback. T Ifnecessary,movethefenceclosertothe bitorswitchtoalargerguidebearing. • seafeatherboardtosupporttheworkU piece(asshowninthedrawingabove).
Push blocks and sticks distance your hands from the spinning bits.
ROuTER TaBlE FEED
Router bit rotates into stock (against feed direction) and pushes stock away from fence and back toward operator. Stop blocks must be positioned to resist these forces. Router bit rotation
Fence Router bit pushes stock in these directions. Feed direction is right to left.
• lwaysuseaguard.Ifthefencedidn’t A comewithaguard,purchaseanaftermarketguardordeviseoneofyourown. • everstarttherouterwiththebitinconN tactwiththestock. • on’tforcethebitoroverloadtherouter. D
If your router table doesn’t have a guard, you can make one of your own.
• ecurethemotorinthebasebeforestartS ingtherouter. • everclimb-cut.Alwaysfeedthestock N fromrighttoleft,asshowninthedrawing above. • sepushblocksandfeatherboardsto U positionyourhandsasafedistancefrom thebit. • voidshapingsmallstock.Instead,shape A alargerpieceandreduceitinsizeafterwards.Ifyoumustshapeasmallpiece, buildanappropriatejigorsecurethe workwithinthejawsofawoodenhandscrewclamp. • on’tbottomoutthebitinthecolletor D partiallyinsertthebit.Instead,completely insertthebit,andthenbackoffapproximately 1⁄16in.
RO u T E R Ta B l E F E N C E S
If you’ve built your own router table, here is a simple fence that works well for routing edges and grooves (a). Select a plank of hardwood and mill it slightly thicker than the average piece of stock you plan to rout. Use a scrollsaw or saber saw to cut a notch in which to fit the router bit (B). Fasten a rectangle of Plexiglas® to the top of the fence to serve as a guard (C). Two small clamps are used to secure the fence to the table (D). The opposite side of the fence is used for routing grooves and dadoes (E).
.R O u T E R Ta B l E F E N C E S Jointing Fence You can joint the edges of stock too short to safely run through a jointer by using your router table and a jointing fence (a). maintaining pressure against the outfeed half of the fence (g). to support the stock after it passes the a B router bit. The setup works like a mini-jointer with a vertical bed. To use the fence. A jointing fence is one in which the two halves are parallel but not in the same geometric plane. say 1 ⁄32 in. Instead. use the router table and a straight bit to remove 1⁄ 32 in. E F g 68 Router Tables . The first step is to cut a strip of plywood and cut a small notch in the center to contain the bit (B). first clamp it to the C D router table (E). from half of the fence (C). the outfeed fence is forward by a small amount. Next. As you make this cut. joint the edge of the work. maintain pressure against the infeed side of the router table fence and stop cutting when you reach the bit opening (D). This method ensures that the jointed edge will be straight. With a straight bit installed in your router (F).
Now clamp the outfeed end of the fence to the table (D) and pivot the infeed half of the fence into the spinning bit (E). Then loosen the locknuts that hold the fence insert.R O u T E R Ta B l E F E N C E S Zero-Clearance Fence To get maximum support from a fence. A zero-clearance fence has no opening for the work to drop into because the bit is used to cut an opening. you’ll want its bit opening to be as small as possible. Now repeat the process for the second half of the fence. The first step is to adjust the height of the bit (a). Remember to clamp the infeed end of the fence in place before use. B C D E 70 Router Tables . attach a a sacrificial fence (B) that fits into the slots on the L -shaped fence (see previous photo-essay) (C). slowly feed the fence half into the spinning bit. If the bit has a guide bearing. To avoid spoiling the standard fence. the procedure is to first secure the fence to the table. Next.
BIR 29 B C D E Router Tables 71 . glue. lightweight. assemble the table with glue and screws (B). and compact for easy storage. This simple stand is made of 3/4-in. The stand can be used for hand routing. and screws. After cutting the parts and sawing or routing the dado joints.-thick plywood joined with dadoes. 72. sturdy top from sink cutouts. Fasten a top from underneath (D) and drop the router in from the top (E). a ➤ See “Two Dollar Top” on p. Drill a hole in the side of the cabinet for the cord (C). The unit is inexpensive. You can equip it with a plywood top or construct a thick.B E N C h TO p R O u T E R Ta B l E Support Stand If you would like a router table but your woodworking budget is tight. you may want to consider building this support stand (a). This will keep it out of the way during routing operations. but it also serves as a benchtop router table when outfitted with a top.
but get or make the baseplate first. The first step is to set up the router. bushing 3/16-dia. It’s less likely to warp too.-dia. because it has plastic laminate on both faces. Template 5/8-dia. B BIR 26 C D E 72 Router Tables . bushing Baseplate dollar apiece (a). Routing for a baseplate isn’t difficult.thick cutouts back-to-back.-thick plywood for routing the opening in the top (B). For this router-table top. Router tabletop bit to make a template from 1⁄4-in. straight bit in the collet (E).-dia. I laminated two 3⁄4-in. Your local shop may even give them away. guide bushing in place with the lock ring (D).-dia. making an extra-thick top that won’t sag. Remove its baseplate (C) and install a 5⁄16-in. install a Step 2: Rout opening perimeter in top. but you’ll probably want the advantages of a baseplate. bit Step 1: Rout template from baseplate. You can rout a shallow recess for the router on the underside of the top.B E N C h TO p RO u T E R Ta B l E Two-Dollar Top If your woodworking budget is limited.-dia. you’ll like this top. 3 ⁄16-in. because you’ll need it a 3/16 -in. Next. it’s constructed from two sink cutouts obtained from a local cabinet shop for a Template 5/16-in. which will allow you to lift the router out of the table to make bit changes or adjustments to the bit height.
Now rout around the inside perimeter in a clockwise direction (m). bushing. use a h I J K l m N Router Tables 73 . Once it is in position. drill a starter hole in the template material to accept the router bit (g).-dia. Apply pressure to the tape with clamps or a mallet to increase its holding power (l).B E N C h TO p R O u T E R Ta B l E Double-sided tape works well to secure the baseplate to the template and the template to the underlayment (F). Begin by equipping the router with a 5⁄ 8-in.-dia. while leaving the ⁄16-in. straight bit in the router. Then set 3 F g the cutting depth to equal the baseplate thickness (J). The next step is to use the template to rout the baseplate recess in the top. and secure the template to the top with double-sided tape (K). Now lay out the baseplate location on the top. Now rout around the perimeter of the baseplate in a clockwise direction (h) and remove the baseplate and attached offcut (I). After routing the perimeter of the cutout (N).
R S T u v 74 Router Tables . size the template to serve as a guide for the edge of the router base.B E N C h TO p RO u T E R Ta B l E second template to rout an opening for the router (O). When you’re routing. the template is aligned with the edge of the top. leaving a 1 ⁄2-in.) O p Clamp the template to the top and then rout a radius on the corners (Q). Next. make a template for rounding the corners of the table. In this case. chamfer the edge to make it user-friendly (u) and seal the edges of the particleboard with a couple of coats of Q shellac (v). and trim the outside edges of the top flush (T). Once the glue dries. the top and template are staggered for clarity. To complete the top. using plenty of glue and clamp pressure. rout the opening for the router with a flush-trim bit (S). (In the photo. and install a flush-trim bit in the router (p).-wide ledge to support the baseplate. Now laminate the second sink cutout to the underside of the top (R).
The last step is to fasten a toggle clamp to the backing board. fasten the runner in place with glue and screws (B).R O u T E R Ta B l E S l E D making a Sled When you’re routing the ends of narrow stock such as door rails. Size the plywood to equal the distance from the router table fence to the front edge of the table. Remember to add a couple of inches of overhang for the runner. you may not want to cut a miter-gauge groove in your top. inviting warping. a groove exposes the raw edges of the substrate. The common solution is to feed the workpiece using a miter gauge. Next. However. because even with an aftermarket metal insert. Now attach the backing board to the top of the base the same way (C). An alternative solution is to build a sled that rides the edge of the tabletop (a). Begin by cutting a rectangular piece of plywood for the base of the sled. Adjust the clamp so that its pad is compressed when the handle is in the closed position (D). a B C D Router Tables 75 . the fence doesn’t provide adequate support. This is a simple jig that takes just a few minutes to construct.
page 78 Edges and Moldings. page 123 .Common Cuts. page 101 Flush-Trimming.
And even if you’ve owned a router for several years. and even define particular furniture styles. I’ll show you how to perform some of the router’s most fundamental and useful operations. I’ll offer lots of information on making these common cuts. Lastly. the information in this part of the book will show you how to begin. provide transitional elements. In Section Five. I’ll cover flush-cutting— an invaluable technique for which you’ll continue to find uses over time. Along the way. which range from routing stop cuts and narrow edges to making coves and small parts. you may find valuable insights here as well as a few new ways of routing. you’ll learn how to use the router for making moldings. which are used to add decoration. in Section Six. In Section Four. .PART TWO Basic Operations I f you have never used a router.
97) Shaping Small Parts with a Jig (p. 95) Cove Cut on the Router Table (p. But let’s face it. In this section. 99) Shaping Small Parts with a Miter Gauge (p. 96) Template Shaping Small Parts (p. 93) Shaping Narrow Ends (p. sturdy workbench is an essential part of any shop. And there’s more to setup than locking the bit in the collet. we will take a look at routing essentials as well as some tips for making your work with the router safe and accurate. The Work Area A large. 94) Using a Starting Pin (p. 91) Shaping Edges (p. The work must be R secured to a bench at a comfortable height. 88) Baseplate as a Guide (p. routers can also destroy a beautiful piece of wood in a heartbeat. with clamps or hold-downs positioned out of the path of the router. They’re efficient too. That’s why it’s so important to spend time on setup before turning on the power. It’s important to have good lighting too. 89) Bearing as a Guide (p. 86) Internal Cut with Guide Bushing (p.SECTion 4 Common Cuts Plunge Cuts ➤ Guided Cuts ➤ Shaping Cuts ➤ Routing Small Parts ➤ Plunge Cut with Edge Guide (p. capable of cutting everything from decorative shapes to fine joints. The workbench provides 78 . 100) ➤ ➤ ➤ ➤ ➤ ➤ ➤ ➤ outers are incredibly versatile tools. 90) Making Stop-Cuts (p. and it’s especially important for routing. The speed at which they can shape a delicate curved molding is unmatched.
you can lay it on riser blocks to lift it off the bench. Routers generate a considerable amount of force. Good lighting is critical for safe. I don’t care for the spongy feel created by the pad as I’m guiding the router. You may opt to attach a power strip to a leg of the bench or bring the power in from overhead. you don’t want to risk routing into the cord. you’ll need to position the work so that it overhangs the bench. Natural light works well if you’re fortunate enough to have lots of windows. it’s important to add task lighting. Although routing pads work well when new. However. Alternatively. As you push and pull the router along the stock. you may not have enough natural light. I secure the pipe clamp to the edge of the bench and reposition it as the position of the work changes. This method solidly secures a small workpiece. they gradually lose their tackiness as the surface becomes infiltrated with fine dust.SECTion 4 solid support for the workpiece as well as a way to secure the work with clamps or hold-downs. As you rout a groove or shape the perimeter of a tabletop. One option is to purchase a rubber routing pad to grip the stock. although it’s usually necessary to stop halfway and reposition the clamps and the workpiece. the workpiece must be immobilized. the workbench should be steady and immovable. yet keeps the area free of obstructions. if your shop is in a basement or garage. Securing the Work It’s not enough to have the support of a solid workbench. I prefer to pinch small work between bench dogs. Clamps are an easy solution. which can easily launch a small piece of stock. a power supply should be nearby. It’s inexpensive and I can easily position it where I need it by attaching it to a pipe clamp. This inexpensive shopmade stand serves as a router table and a support base for hand routing. Sometimes the work is so small that there just isn’t room for clamps. A reflector-type lamp with a spring clamp is my favorite. accurate work. Common Cuts 79 . Regardless. yet out of the way. Of course. If you’re routing completely through the stock. Instead. The height of the dogs can be adjusted below the stock surface.
And even if you have a router table. There are four common approaches for guiding the cut: guide bearings. such as grooves and mortises. 80 Common Cuts . The most common guide method is to simply allow the guide bearing on the router bit to follow the edge of the stock. sometimes the workpiece is too large or awkward to push across a router table. handheld routing may be your only option. The bearing simply rolls along the edge of the workpiece to guide the bit along the edge while limiting the cutting depth. because you’ll need a guide system separate from the bit. each approach has its advantages and disadvantages. are somewhat more complicated. This is also a common technique that’s used for shaping the edge of a tabletop or drawer front or for making a strip of molding. Bearings and bushings are common tools that help guide the cut. the baseplate. In addition to straight edges. guide bearings will also follow curves (as shown in the drawing on the facing page). Many bits include a bearing for guiding the cut.SECTion 4 Hand routing does not require a router table or expensive jigs. Bearing-Guided Cuts The easiest solution for guiding the cut is to use the bearing that is fastened to the end of the bit. Also. Internal cuts. and an edge guide or fence. bushings. The most basic of cuts is to shape a decorative profile (such as an ogee or thumbnail) along the edge of a straight-sided surface. at times handheld routing is still the best option. As you might expect. internal cuts often start and/or end at a specific point. For example. And if you need to cut a groove for a partition or divider inside a cabinet. Handheld Routing The most common and inexpensive method for using the router is hand routing.
You can easily overcome this potential problem by keeping the same point of the base in contact with the fence throughout the cut. 214. If the baseplate wanders. The edge guide has been around nearly as long as the router. however. Or you can replace the round baseplate with a square one. Baseplate-Guided Cuts Another way to guide internal cuts is to use the edge of the baseplate. A fence or guide attaches to the other end of the rod and rides the edge of the workpiece. ➤ See “Internal Cut” on p. Using the baseplate as a guide isn’t as foolproof as the bearing method. it can also be used to guide a straight bit for flushtrimming one surface adjacent to another. A guide strip is first secured to the workpiece with clamps or brads to serve as a fence. Pilot bearing This makes it easy to shape a decorative profile along a circle or arc. Common Cuts 81 . you’ll need a template for the bearing to ride on. Although edge shaping is the most frequent use for a guide bearing. as long as you keep the router baseplate in contact with the fence. For example. You can solve the BIR 11 problem by using two parallel fences and trapping the router base between them. the cut is spoiled. Guiding from the baseplate is fast and easy. This is a quick and practical method for cutting grooves. Edge Guide Another method for guiding the cut is to use an edge guide (as shown in the top photo on p. Also. the location of the cut may be inconsistent. So if you rotate the base along the guide as you push the router. A guide bearing can also be used at the base of a straight bit to make an internal cut. when guiding the router from the baseplate. 82). If the entire edge is to be cut in the process. The position of the fence from the center of the groove must equal one-half the width of the baseplate. the bit will cut a straight path.SECTion 4 BEARinG AS A GuidE Baseplate Rabbeting bit Workpiece Pilot bearing follows edge of workpiece as bit cuts profile. It has a rod or a pair of rods that attach to the router base. it’s important to realize that the baseplate of most routers isn’t concentric with the collet.
Guide bushing Template 82 Common Cuts . As when you guide the bit from the baseplate. Like a guide bearing. a bushing can guide the cut along the edge of both curved and straight stock. But guide Edge guides allow for internal cuts. especially when positioned several inches from the router base. BiT WiTH GuidE BuSHinG Workpiece Bit Bushings require a jig or template to bear against. with the bit passing through it. Bushings Still another method for guiding the cut employs a bushing. also called a template guide (as shown in the drawing below).SECTion 4 Although it is still useful at times. A bushing is a metal collar or sleeve that fits within the baseplate opening. an edge guide can be somewhat awkward to use. you can quickly spoil the cut if the fence wanders even slightly from the edge of the stock.
• Don’t attempt to climb-cut. and wood fragments that can cause serious eye injury. Routers propel dust. portable machine. without a guide. But in spite of its size. • Never start the router with the bit contacting the stock. The bit can grab the stock violently and pull the router from your grasp. • Don’t cut the power cord. it’s the router will damage your hearing. The high-decibel scream of Common Cuts 83 . • Wear hearing protection. you’ll need to guide from the same portion of the bushing throughout the cut. it is capable of inflicting serious injury. when I cut half-blind dovetails. So for the greatest accuracy. As with all power tools. and don’t exceed it. Check with the bit manufacturer for the recommended rpm. Allow the router to develop full speed before making contact with the workpiece.SECTion 4 bushings excel at guiding internal cuts such as grooves. Freehand Routing There are times when I rout freehand. Plan the route you’ll use and position the cord out of the cutting path. chips. check with the bit manufacturer. They’re also used extensively with jigs for making accurate joinery such as dovetails. The template can be curved or straight. Also. Afterwards. Freehand routing is a great yet often overlooked option with several applications. Realize too that bushings are typically not concentric with the router collet (or the bit). I usually rout the dovetail sockets freehand and then saw the ➤ HAndHEld RouTER SAFETy The router is a relatively small. but it’s important that it be sized to accommodate the offset between the bushing and the bit (see the drawing below). Template Bushing dia. • Large bits are not intended for handheld routers. I just rout within the layout lines. For example. If in doubt. Workpiece • Always read and follow the manufacturer’s safety guidelines. you’ll need to first make a template. I pare to the lines with a chisel. To use a guide bushing. when routing a shallow mortise for a lock or hinge. • Use the appropriate speed. important to carefully follow safety guidelines. CAlCulATinG oFFSET Bit dia. • Wear eye protection.
you can usually climb-cut relatively safely with smaller bits. Before routing. but the key is to use only sharp. Following are a few general guidelines. However. I lay out the joint with a sharp knife. stable entry into the cut. Take three or four light passes if necessary. it’s always important to work wood with the grain to achieve the smoothest possible surface and avoid tearout. and then I follow the knife lines with a router and dovetail bit. Still another method for avoiding splintering is to first make several short. but I don’t consider climb-cutting one of them. But first replace the round baseplate with a square one. and the bit could snap. then switch to smaller bearings until the final depth is reached. take the first pass with a large-diameter bearing. when you least expect it. allow the tool to develop full speed before making contact. You can. then you’ll need a plunge router. But sometimes the guidelines contradict each other.SECTion 4 tails by hand to fit the sockets. The solution? Take lighter cuts. If you plan to cut mortises with a router. The long. Routing freehand may sound difficult. don’t climb-cut. small-diameter bits. This approach ensures a smooth. And a rule of thumb when routing is to work the perimeter of a board in a counterclockwise direction. however. the router base should make contact before the bit. straight edge of a square base will stabilize the router as you tip it into the cut. but where do you draw the line? At some point. Also. plunging cut with a fixed-base router. For example. Instead. intermittent cuts along the edge. But what do you do if the latter advice has you routing against the grain and tearing and splintering the stock? There are solutions. The workpiece or the router could jerk violently. Clean. This severs the grain at each cut to limit splintering. 84 Common Cuts . Safe Cutting To make clean cuts safely. Entering the Work As with all power tools. Sure. In other words. it’s necessary to approach the workpiece in a certain fashion and to feed the tool at the appropriate speed and in the correct direction. the bit can grab and pull the router from your grasp. You can’t safely make a deep. never turn on a router with the cutter contacting the workpiece. an optional method is to first bore a hole that is larger than the bit and start the cut with the bit in the hole. cut shallow stopped grooves and flutes with your fixed-base router. If the cut is guided with a bearing. ➤ CliMB-CuTTinG Woodworking has many rules of thumb that keep us on track and help us avoid potential problems or safety issues.
So with a handheld router. chisel. or rout an end-grain surface. such as cherry and maple. despite your best efforts wood will still sometimes splinter. and other woodworking power tools in the direction opposing the cutter rotation. Otherwise the workpiece would be grabbed and launched across the room. One is to shape or rout the ends of a board first. Scorching or burning is especially a problem for certain wood species. Rout end grain first. jointers. saw. because of their chemical composition. When routing. This way. the subsequent cuts along the perpendicular edges will remove the splintered corners. In just a short period of time. you can clamp a backing board to the stock to support the trailing edge as you rout. CuT SEquEnCE And diRECTion Rout counterclockwise externally. you can minimize or eliminate any splintering by using a sharp bit and reducing the feed rate. you’ll gain a feel for the proper feed rate. The same principle holds true for a router. observe the finished surface. The key is to listen to the router. and practice. the feed direction is always the opposite of the direction the router wants to feed itself.SECTion 4 Feed Rate and Direction The speed at which you push or pull the router through the stock has a direct effect on the surface quality of the cut. each wing of the bit will take larger bites and create a rippled. especially as you approach the end of the cut. Even so. An excessively slow feed rate will overheat the bit as well as the stock and scorch the surface. always push it counterclockwise around the perimeter of a board or frame and clockwise around the interior (as shown in the drawing above). Another method for avoiding splintering is to rip the board to its final width after routing. In that case. shapers. BIR 28 Common Cuts 85 . washboard surface that is difficult to sand out. Just remember. Feed Direction Workpieces are always fed across tablesaws. Avoiding Splintering Anytime you plane. There are several solutions. there’s a possibility that the unsupported wood at the trailing end of the cut will splinter. If you feed too quickly. Rout clockwise internally. you’ll be in control. If this method isn’t feasible.
Loosen the locking screw that holds the depth stop rod. the stop rod should be positioned against the base casting. it’s important to first set the cutting depth.PlunGE CuTS Plunge Cut with Edge Guide With its motor mounted on spring-loaded posts. which allows for the deepest cut. Next. the plunge router has the unique ability to start and stop a mortise or groove at any point on the workpiece (A). plunge the router until the bit touches the A surface of the work (C) and lock the depth stop rod in position (d). Then lock the depth indicator B C 86 Common Cuts . At this point. But before turning on the power. and position the rod against the depth stop (B).
While maintaining contact between the edge guide and workpiece.PlunGE CuTS at ‘‘O” (E). you’re ready to make the cut. tighten the depth rod locking screw. d E F G H Common Cuts 87 . Finally. push the router to the ending point of the cut (H). With the depth stop setup complete. Power up the router. position the edge guide against the workpiece. Now loosen the depth rod locking screw and raise the depth rod until the depth indicator is positioned for the cutting depth (F). and lower the spinning bit (G).
C d E F 88 Common Cuts . you’ll first have to calculate the offset (bushing diameter minus bit diameter divided by two) and make a template. In this case. Set the cutting depth (E) and make the cut in a clockwise direction (F). I’m cutting a rectangular-shaped recess into the back of a frame that has an oval opening (A).GuidEd CuTS internal Cut with Guide Bushing Before using a guide bushing. A B Fasten the template with small nails or doublestick tape (B). Secure a straight bit in the router collet (C) and install the guide bushing in the router baseplate (d).
I’ve replaced the factory baseplate with a custom baseplate with straight sides. 23. Finally. Next. align the fence and clamp it in position.GuidEd CuTS Baseplate as a Guide Using the baseplate as a guide is pretty straightforward. A B C d Common Cuts 89 . Begin by laying out the cut on the face of the workpiece (B). make the cut (d). For increased accuracy. and it makes setup a snap (A). A cut in the T-square fence makes setup fast and accurate (C). ➤ See ‘‘Making a Straight-Sided Baseplate” on p. A T-square fence ensures that the cut is perpendicular to the edge of the workpiece.
But as you shape the edge. Begin by using the workpiece to gauge the cutting depth (B). it’s common to experience minor tearout (d).GuidEd CuTS Bearing as a Guide Probably the simplest and most common routing method is to use the bearing on the bit to guide the cut. such as in this example (A). It’s often used to shape decorative edges. As you approach the corner. remember to rout in a counterclockwise direction (F) on the outside and in a clockwise direction on the inside (G). C d E F G 90 Common Cuts . Shape the outside edge. the tearout will be cut away (E). starting with an end and moving in a counterclockwise A B direction (C). To avoid climb-cutting.
locate the point at which the router bit begins to project through the fence opening on the outfeed side of the bit. Position the workpiece against the fence and slide it until it makes contact with the bit (B).SHAPinG CuTS Making Stop-Cuts A stop-cut begins and/or ends before it reaches the end of the workpiece (A). It’s very important for your personal safety that you use a stop block clamped to the fence to prevent kickback as well as to accurately position the board. The next step is to position the stop block. (Text continues on p. the workpiece is pushed sideways into the spinning router bit. To make a stop-cut along the edge. disconnect the router from the power source.) A B C d Common Cuts 91 . Next. To begin. 92. Align the layout mark on the workpiece with the outfeed mark on the fence (d). Now mark a line at that spot (C) and repeat the process on the infeed side of the bit.
Feed the stock right to left until the stop line on the work aligns with the mark on the outfeed fence (H).SHAPinG CuTS Now clamp the stop block to the infeed side of the fence directly behind the workpiece (E). E F G H 92 Common Cuts . Now pivot the work into the spinning bit until it makes full contact with the fence (G). first position the workpiece against the stop block and away from the bit (F). To make the cut.
but the splintering will shape away when you’re routing the long-grain edge (H). Instead.SHAPinG CuTS Shaping Edges Shaping edges on a router table is much easier than shaping them with a handheld router (A). Next. position a barrier guard (d). If your router table isn’t equipped with a guard. The corners will often tear out (G). the workpiece is pushed along the fence with the full support of the table. There is no need to reposition the clamps halfway through the process or precariously balance the router as you push it along the workpiece. you can construct the one shown in the photo or just clamp a thick plank to the fence. Position the board behind the bit on the infeed side of the fence (E) and begin routing one end of the workpiece (F). Begin by positioning the fence tangent to the bearing on the bit (B). Then lock the fence securely in place (C). A B C d E F G H Common Cuts 93 .
The solution is to use a miter gauge (A). Position the fence tangent to the guide bearing and lock it in place (E). it adds a measure of safety by placing a barrier around much of the bit.SHAPinG CuTS Shaping narrow Ends Many cuts on the router table are guided by the fence. A B C Press the end of the work against the fence to correctly position it (G). Hold the workpiece firmly against the miter gauge and make the cut (H). narrow stock such as door rails doesn’t receive adequate support from the fence. Then adjust the bit to the necessary height (C). Begin by locking the bit securely in the collet (B). d E F G H 94 Common Cuts . place an insert ring around the base of the bit to provide extra support for the workpiece (d). and it directs shavings toward the dust collector. However. and reduce the opening around the bit (F). Next. It serves as a stop to position the workpiece. Remember: It’s still important that the fence be locked in place. Loosen the screws that hold the fence inserts.
SHAPinG CuTS using a Starting Pin When you’re routing the edge of a curve. Because the bearing rolls along the stock. A B C d Common Cuts 95 . the cutting portion of the bit makes contact with the workpiece before the workpiece makes contact with the guide bearing. Once the workpiece makes contact with the guide bearing. especially with the large router bits available today. The safe solution is to position the workpiece against the starting pin to enter the cut. The potential is for a kickback to occur. The starting pin is an important part of this type of setup (A). it’s important that the workpiece be smooth and free of bumps or ridges from bandsawing. the common guide method is to use the bearing on the bit. pivot the work away from the starting pin (C) and proceed with the remainder of the cut (d). As you enter the cut. The pin acts as a fulcrum on which to pivot the workpiece into the spinning bit (B).
Adjust the fence position and the bit height to blend the curves from each of the two router bits. switch 15/8 in. more appealing than one with a constant radius. radius A d 96 Common Cuts . After making the first portion of the cove.SHAPinG CuTS Cove Cut on the Router Table Even the largest router bits will not cut a very deep cove. First Cut Instead use two large router bits with different radii to create a large elliptical cove. C Second Cut 1 in. heavy cuts are prone to kickback and tend to cause overheating of the router. As an added benefit. This will greatly increase the depth and width of the cove and enable you to create a large molding profile. Begin by making multiple light passes with the B first bit (B). an elliptical cove is Even a large router bit can't shape a very large cove. It’s important to keep each cut light. continuous curve (d). Use featherboards to keep the workpiece in position. radius bits and complete the cut (C). Use two bits of different radii and create an elliptical cove (A). But there’s a practical way to increase the size of the cove. The final cove should be a smooth.
and glue the two main parts of the fence (g). A tall fence gives greater support for feeding stock on edge and also provides a place to position guards and featherboards (as shown in the photo at left below). Glue block Slot for attachment of sacrificial fence Bit opening Sacrificial fence Machine screw a B C D BIR 30 E F g h Router Tables 69 . Machine screws and wing nuts fit in the slots (E) for mounting a guard or sacrificial fence (F). in many situations you’ll most likely want a taller fence. attach the glue blocks (h).RO u T E R Ta B l E F E N C E S ‘l’ Fence Although a plank or strip of plywood can serve as a fence. cut a bit opening. Construction is simple—two plywood strips are joined at 90 degrees (a). Begin by laying out and cutting the slots on the face of the fence (D). Finally. Next. Biscuits increase the glue surface area (B) and glue blocks at the back stiffen the fence (C).
After shaping. glue the stock to a piece of 1⁄4-in.) d Common Cuts 97 . After the glue has dried. the setup requires either a fence or a template to limit the cutting depth.-thick plywood with heavy paper in the joint (B). 98.Ro u T i n G S M A l l PA RT S Template Shaping Small Parts These tiny blocks (A) measure approximately 1 ⁄2 in. Then rip the stock to final width and crosscut it to final length (d). A B C (Text continues on p. the blocks will be mitered on the ends and carefully fitted into a notch in the seat board. joint the edge of the assembly with a bench plane or jointer (C). Because the entire edge is shaped. but leave it oversize in width and length. by 3 in. the paper will allow you to separate the plywood easily from the workpiece. by 7⁄ 8 in. and require a thumbnail profile along one edge and both ends. The plywood will provide a template for the router bearing during the shaping process. After shaping. The next step is to shape the profile. Begin by milling the stock to the final thickness. Next.
shape the edge using the same procedure (F). Next. The heavy wooden clamp effectively adds mass and positions hands a safe distance from the spinning router bit. Also. Begin by shaping the ends.R o u T i n G S M A l l PA RT S There are a couple of keys to shaping such a small piece: add mass to reduce chatter and provide a method to grasp the part safely for shaping. After the shaping is complete. gently pry the plywood from the workpiece by placing a chisel into the seam along the back edge (G). feed the work into the spinning bit until the plywood template makes contact with the bearing (E). if the bit inadvertently contacts the jaws of the clamp. After shaping the ends. there’s no dangerous metal-to-metal contact. Tighten the jaws of E the clamp firmly around the stock. One solution is to grip the part within the jaws of a wooden handscrew. F G 98 Common Cuts .
mill the stock for a snug fit within the groove of the jig (B).-thick plywood with pockets for holding the work (A). A B C d Common Cuts 99 . Next. the second workpiece is held within a groove as the end is shaped. A rabbet holds the first workpiece as it is shaped along the edge. Furthermore. As you use the jig. Place stock here for shaping ends. The jig is a piece of 3⁄4-in. Feed Stock must fit snugly. a finger hole in the top of the jig provides a way to push the work free from the jig after shaping. shape the ends of the stock. the rabbet that secures the work for shaping the edge must be slightly less in dimension than the stock being shaped. Place stock here for shaping edges. you can also position a second piece into the jig for end shaping (C). After making the jig.Ro u T i n G S M A l l PA RT S Shaping Small Parts with a Jig Here’s a second method for shaping the entire edge of a small part. Then place it into the rabbet for shaping an edge. maintain firm pressure against the router table and fence (d). If you are shaping multiple pieces. This way pressure is applied to the stock as it is shaped. preventing chatter. such as the candle-slide front for a desk. The fit of the workpiece within the groove must be snug. It involves a simple jig that is designed for shaping multiple parts.
orient the stock on the edge (B) or end (C) and firmly clamp it to the backup board on the miter gauge. ➤ on p. or flat column. the complete pilaster is added to the interior of a desk. C 100 Common Cuts . For each profile. 224 See “Small Stock Fluted on the Router Table” The first stage in this process involves shaping a strip of molding. short blocks of the molding are cut B from the strip for use as the base and capital (A). or “returned. with the same profiles used on ” the face of the block. This setup allows safe and accurate shaping of very small workpieces such as these. After shaping. But first. A The parts being shaped in this example are the base and capital for a pilaster.R o u T i n G S M A l l PA RT S Shaping Small Parts with a Miter Gauge This small-part setup uses a miter gauge in conjunction with a backup board. which is fastened to the head of the gauge with a pair of screws. After shaping. the ends of the blocks must be shaped. the small workpiece is then clamped to the backup board for safe shaping. The router table fence is first secured parallel to the miter gauge slot.
Edges and Moldings
Bullnose in Two Cuts (p. 109) Edge Bead (p. 110) Edge with Fence (p. 111) Beveling Curved Edges (p. 113)
Molding on Face (p. 114) Complex Molding (p. 116) Complex Molding II (p. 118) Built-Up Molding (p. 119) Arched Molding Face (p. 121) Arched Molding Edge (p. 122)
oldings and edgetreatments havebeenusedthroughoutthe agestocreatevisualinterestand toadddetailtofurnitureandarchitecture. Infact,furniturestylesareoftendictated bytheirmoldings,amongotherthings. Whilemostperiodpiecesareembellished withelaboratemoldingsandcornices,even simplefurniturestylesusebasicmolding profilesorchamferstosoftenanedgeand addasmalldegreeofdetail,asshownin thetopdrawingatleftonp.102.
Therearetwobasicmethodsforadding amoldingprofiletoapieceoffurnitureor cabinetry,asshowninthedrawingatright onp.102.Thefirstistoshapeastripof moldingandattachittotheworkwithglue and/orfasteners.Thesecondistoshape theedgeofthework.Eachmethodyieldsa differenteffect.Forexample,appliedmoldingsstandproudofthesurroundingsurfaces andcreateastrongvisualeffect.Agood exampleisacrownmoldingonachestof drawers,whichprovidesavisuallypowerful,
This cornice can be made with a router from six separate molding strips using simple profiles. Dentil can be made on tablesaw with dado head. Crown Fascia Fascia Soffit Cove Tongue-and-groove knives cut this profile. Ovolo Reverse ogee
MOldINgS IN FuRNITuRE
Crown molding "looks" downward.
Edge treatment lightens look of drawers.
Dentil Reverse ogee
Transition molding between case and foot
lIppEd dOORS aNd dRawERS wITh ThuMbNaIl pROFIlE
distinctiveterminustothetopofacase piece.Incontrast,edgetreatmentscan reducevisualweightorthicknessandcreate alighterappearance.Forexample,lipped doorsordrawerfrontscanbenefitfroma 1/4 in. BIR 05 7/8 in. simpleroundoveralongtheedges,which createsathin,almostdelicateappearance andreducesvisualweight(seethedrawing Door atleft). Oneofthemostefficientandproductive Thumbnail toolsforcreatingbothedgetreatmentsand moldingsistherouter(seethephotoonthe facingpage).Theedgeofalargetabletopis moreeasilyshapedbypushingarouteralong theedge.Ontheotherhand,theroutertable Expansion gap isabetterchoiceforshapinglongstripsof
Edges and Moldings
baSIC MOldINg pROFIlES
When you’re shaping edges, the router table provides support for the workpiece.
moldings.Thefenceandthetabletopprovidesupport,andfeatherboardscanbeused toholdthestockandguideitpastthebitin astraightpath.Infact,asmallpowerfeeder isidealforroutingstripsofmoldingsona routertable.Itwillkeepyourhandsasafe distancefromthebitandallowyoutosafely routevennarrowpiecesofstock.
using Edge Treatments
Allthemoldingsthatweuse,fromsimple beadstocomplexcrowns,comprisebasic profilesthathaveoriginsinancientGreek andRomanarchitecture(seethedrawingat right).Theogee,bead,cove,andovoloare afewexamples.Ofcourse,therearerouter bitsavailabletocreateeachofthesebasic profilesinanumberofdifferentsizes.The profilescanbeusedindividuallyorcombinedtocreateacomplexmolding.Complex moldingsareacombinationoftwoormore simpleprofiles.Goodexamplesarefound inmanyofthecrownmoldingsforfurniture andarchitecture.Manycrownmoldings comprisealargecentralcoveorogeeflanked bysmallerprofiles.Asthemoldingstepsup- ward,italso“looksdown”towardtheviewer, asshownintheleftphotoonp.104. Simpleprofilesareoftenusedalongthe edgesoftabletopsanddrawers(seethe
Edges and Moldings
This clock construction combines shaped edges and applied moldings. Tabletops and drawer edges are profiled to reduce their visual weight.
drawingaboveright).Theyareaneffective waytoeliminateahard,squareedgewhile addingadegreeofstyle.Oftenastripmoldingofasimpleprofileisusedincaseworkto provideatransitionbetweentheupperand lowercases.
Therearethreemethodsforcombining profilestocreatealarge,complexmolding, asshowninthedrawingonthefacingpage.
Edges and Moldings
Thefirstmethodistoshapeindividualstrips ofwoodofvariouswidthsandthicknesses andstackthem.Thisisagreatwaytocreate alargearchitecturalmoldingwitharouter. Thesecondmethodistoshapeone largepieceofstock.Unlikearchitectural moldings,whichareoftenpainted,furniture moldingsareusuallyfinishedinanatural stain,andstackedstripscanresultinvisually
Also. Shape flat stock and bevel edges.Incontrast.Agoodsoluand a tablesaw cove cutter.solidstockfillsthevoidthatwould otherwiseresultfromusingathinstripof architecturalcrownmolding. Thethirdmethodistoshapeastripof flatstock.itworkswellasatransition moldingbetweentwostackedcases. Edges and Moldings 105 .Althoughaflatmoldingisnotuseful atthetopofacasewhereitwouldcreate avisualvoid.asina tallclock.Thismethodgivestheappearanceof alargemoldingwithouttheneedforheavy stock. tionistocutalargecoveonthetablesaw andflankitwithsmallerroutedprofiles.SECTION 5 ThREE METhOdS FOR ShapINg CROwN MOldINg Shape and stack strips. shapingasolidpieceofstockeliminates thisproblem. Joint distracting.asshown inthetopphotoonp.beveltheedges.andattachitatan angle.mismatchedgrain.Thisisalsothe bestwaytoshapecurvedmoldings.whenusedasafurniture crown. Shape solid stock. This crown molding bit set Thedrawbacktothelasttwomethodsis has special inverted router bits thelimitedsizeofrouterbits.106.
106 Edges and Moldings . Shaping Complex Profiles Remember.complexmoldingprofilesare justcombinationsoftwoormorebasicprofiles. handheld vs.Whenever possible.The broadsurfaceoftheroutertableprovides supportforthework.Withanassortmentofbasicprofile bits.Iprefertoshapemoldingsand edgesontheroutertable(seethephotoon thefacingpage). Althoughadedicatedmulti-profilebit maytaketheguessworkoutofroutinga complexmolding.Theyalsoprovideyouwithless Thechoiceofwhethertousetherouter freehandorinaroutertabledependsonthe sizeandshapeoftheworkpiece.Inotherwords.you’llhavegreaterflexibilitytodesign acomplexmoldingtomatchtheprojectat hand.oryoucan useindividualbitsandmakeseveralcutsto achievethesameresults.It’saneasydecision.becauseamultiprofilebitisdedicatedtomakingaspecific profile.SECTION 5 You can combine several bits to make a complex molding.acollectionofindividual single-profilebitsgivesyoumoredesigncreativity.itcanbesomewhatlimiting. Router Table Most furniture styles use moldings.Youcanshapeacomplexprofilewith adedicatedmulti-profilebit.andthefenceallows useofguardsandfeatherboards. even if they’re just simple edge beads.it’ssimplyeasiertomanipulate theworkpieceacrosstheroutertablethan tosupporttherouterabovethework. Incontrast.In mostcases.thesebitsarelargeand expensive. flexibility.
Witha large.suchas tabletops.SECTION 5 Making moldings is easier with a router table than handrouting them. Thisisagreatadvantagewhenyou’re shapinglengthsofmoldings.you’llinsteadfindit’s easiertopushahandheldrouteralongthe edgeofthestock. Sowhyuseahandheldrouterforedges ormoldings?Alargeworkpiecesuchasa tabletopmaybetooheavyorawkwardto maneuveracrosstheroutertable.Infact.Aruleofthumbis tousestraight-grainedstockformoldings andfiguredstockforshowsurfaces. Stock Selection Stockselectionplaysanimportantrolein thevisualsuccessofmoldingsandedge Large Coves Asmentionedearlier.It’salsoimportanttothesuccess oftheshapingprocess. treatments. Straight-grainedstockwillbelesslikelyto twistanddistortasitisripped.Ofcourse.heavyworkpiece.For saferouting.a powerfeederusedinconjunctionwiththe routertableallowsyoutosafelyandaccuratelyshapeevennarrowmoldingstrips— somethingyoudon’twanttoattemptwith ahandheldrouter.thinstripmoldingsareshaped onwidestockandrippedfreeafterwards.straightgrainedstockproduceslesstearout.manymoldingsare baseduponalargecentralcoveflanked Edges and Moldings 107 .therouter tableisalwayscleanerbecauseoftheease ofattachingdustcollection.anddoorpanels.It’salways agoodideatoshapeanextrapieceortwo ofstripmoldingtoavoidcomingupshort incaseyoumiscutapiecewhilefitting. Whenyou’remakingmoldings.drawerfronts.It canbedifficulttomillanidenticalstripofa complexmolding.
Whenshoppingforbeading bits. • Edge was trimmed after shaping.Agreateranglepro- ducesawidercove.youcan shapealarge.Toshapea coveonthetablesaw. The Bead Correct profile • Bead is full and round.dividers.SECTION 5 uSES FOR ThE VERSaTIlE bEad Table edge Backboard Stile Rail Scribed bead on drawer Cock bead on drawer Beaded sticking This spice cabinet features a large bead as part of the crown molding.It’sused toformtheedgeofdrawers. Unfortunately.coves.thebeadisoneofthemost usefuledgeandmoldingprofilesavailable (seethetopdrawingabove). andbackboards.manybeadingbitscutalarge quirkthatappearsdisproportionatetothebead. Bead is flat on side • Incorrect setting of tool.youcanreducethe sandingtimebyusingaspeciallydesigned covecutteravailablefromCMT.Thistime-honoredtechniqueisasoldasthetablesawitselfand. • Surface was planed or sanded after shaping.therearerouter bitsavailabletocutbeadsinanumberof differentsizes. whichistheshallowgroovethatflanksabead. Anothermethodforshapinglargecoves usesthetablesaw.ellipticalcovethatislarger thantheindividualbitsusedtocreateit.Thedepthofthecove isdeterminedbytheheightofthebladeon thefinalpass.andtosoftenthecorners ofsquarestock.Ilookforthosethatshapeanarrowquirk.Fortunately. 108 Edges and Moldings .and ogees.Covescutwiththismethod requirescrapingandsandingtoremovethe sawmarks.However.attachafencetothe sawtableatanangle. whencombinedwithrouterprofiles.Bycombiningcovebits.suchastablelegsand stretchers. pROblEMS wITh ShapINg bEadS Bead is flat on top • Warped stock didn't make full contact with bit.isan Undoubtedly. effectivemethodforcreatinglarge-scale moldingswithsmall-shoptools. bysmallermoldingslikebeads.
This process is best done on a router table. the fence is used to guide the cut.ROuTINg EdgES bullnose in Two Cuts Although you can purchase bullnose router bits. a b C d Edges and Moldings 109 . you can shape the same profile with two passes of a roundover bit. Then shape the opposite face to complete the bullnose profile (d). Set the fence tangent to the guide bearing and make the first pass (C). Instead. Begin by setting the height of the bit (b). because on the second pass. the bearing will not receive support from the workpiece (a).
When properly set up. the bead will be 180 degrees of a circle with no flat spots on the side or top (d). the edge bead is a good choice for adding a small embellishment to a table apron or the backboards in a cabinet (a). Begin by setting the height (b) and then the depth of the profile (C). a b C d 110 Edges and Moldings .ROuTINg EdgES Edge bead Although quite simple.
the outfeed half of the fence is positioned forward to support the workpiece. and. The problem with this method is that it requires an offset fence and a fussy setup. (Text continues on p. To avoid sniping of the trailing edge due to the loss of stock width. adjust the bit height (C) and minimize the fence opening (d). and afterwards the fence must be reset to its original position. Next. 112. It’s much easier to adjust the fence so that the full profile is tangent to the stock.ROuTINg EdgES Edge with Fence Conventional wisdom dictates using a split fence when you’re shaping the entire edge of a workpiece (a). of course. there is no need to reset the fence at the end of the process. You won’t need a split fence.) a b C d Edges and Moldings 111 . When using a large bullnose bit like this. The idea is to shape away a little more than really needed to ensure that the full profile is shaped. be sure it is secure in the collet (b).
especially on a large bit like the one pictured here (E). the fence is adjusted tangent to the smallest cutting circle of the bit (g). When properly set.ROuTINg EdgES A guard is always important. After a first pass (F). E F g h 112 Edges and Moldings . the bit cuts the full profile without reducing the size of the stock (h).
and the small-diameter pilot on the bit reaches into the corners (d). The difficulty is that the work of beveling all those tight. first bevel the edges with a modified router bit. interconnected curves is extremely tedious. you will still need to carve the corners (E) and complete the bevel. Next. Before beginning the cut. The small base will easily follow the curved surface of the splat. adjust the depth so that the pilot of the bit just grazes the edges of the surface. grind away most of the steel to create a chamfer bit with a 15-degree angle (b). a b C d E Edges and Moldings 113 . After routing. The splat (the back center area) of a chair is a good example. mount the bit in a laminate trimmer.ROuTINg EdgES beveling Curved Edges Beveling the edges of curves is a centuries-old technique for making the stock appear thinner than it actually is. Beginning with an inexpensive high-speed steel router bit (a). But much of the tedious handwork has been eliminated. This detail creates an illusion of lightness without sacrificing strength. To help speed the process. which is really a small router (C).
Before beginning. you can create a wide molding. then it was fastened to the case. Next. it’s important to make a sketch of the molding and plan the cutting sequence so Bead Cove Ovolo Cove and bead Joint Fillet Bead that the workpiece has sufficient support from the table and fence during each step of the routing process (C). Molding on Face By shaping the face of a board.M a k I N g lO TO g O S E C T I O N . turn the a Thumbnail b C BIR 27 d E 114 Edges and Moldings . The first step is to shape the small thumbnail profile at the base of the molding with a roundover bit (d).M O l d I N g Sh E R E This corner cupboard cornice was shaped as two separate strips to avoid waste. For a smooth surface. It’s also important to use featherboards to hold the stock firmly in place as you feed it past the bit. such as this cornice base (a. b). it’s best to make this cut in two passes (E).
Two sizes of corebox bits are used. Clamp a featherboard in place to hold the work to the fence and prevent it from tipping (g). along with featherboards. F g h I J k Edges and Moldings 115 . I O TO g O I N R E workpiece on edge and shape the bead (F). to control the cut and the feed rate (I).S E C T I Oa kRN g M O l dh Eg S M N . shape the flat areas between the profiles (J). To safely shape the “step” at the top. invert the molding (k). Finally. The next step is to shape the small coves on the molding face (h).
M O l d I N g Sh E R E Complex Molding This small crown molding (a) is from a spice box.M a k I N g lO TO g O S E C T I O N . raise the bit and take a second pass (F). b C d E 116 Edges and Moldings . Inverting the stock enables you to reach the area with the short bit (C). safer cut. and gather the bits you’ll need. Two light passes ensure a clean cut without burning (d). it’s important for your safety that you shape a plank and rip the molding free afterwards. A slot cutter will create the fillet between the cove and bead. It looks best when shaped from one piece of stock as opposed to combining several strips. and adds workpiece mass for a smoother. A third light pass (g) ensures that this cherry routs cleanly with no tearout or burning. Sometimes you’ll find that it’s necessary to remove the bearing to create an undercut (b). Before routing a complex molding. This technique positions your hands a safe distance from the bit during routing. As always. Start with a light cut (E). First set the height (h) and the fence so that the fillet will properly flank the bead (I). Begin by shaping the bead at the top of the profile. The next step is to shape the cove. Then. it’s best to make a sketch. plan the cutting sequence. It provides a good example of how to use your router table and a number of different bits to a make a complex molding. The last step is to turn the stock on edge and shape the thumbnail profile with a roundover bit (J).Featherboards support the stock as it passes through the router table on edge (k).
I O TO g O I N R E F g h I J k Edges and Moldings 117 .S E C T I Oa kRN g M O l dh Eg S M N .
M O l d I N g Sh E R E Complex Molding II This reverse ogee and ovolo (a) is cut using just two bits. Then invert the stock and rout a the ovolo (d). However. you’ll first need to remove the guide bearing and grind away the mounting stud (b). Set the fence in position and make the ogee in two passes (C). b C d 118 Edges and Moldings .M a k I N g lO TO g O S E C T I O N . to create the deep ogee along with the fillet.
I’m using a large multiple-profile bit.S E C T I Oa kRN g M O l dh Eg S M N . or both. position the (Text continues on p. you can stack separate strips to make a large molding. take care to match the grain and color before you begin (a). In this case. After an initial light pass (E). Then set the height (C) and minimize the fence opening (d). you can create a a number of shapes with one bit.) a b C d E Edges and Moldings 119 . I O TO g O I N R E built-up Molding To avoid the need for thick stock. First. lock the bit securely in the collet (b). By adjusting the fence. 120. bit height. For the best results.
M O l d I N g Sh E R E fence tangent to the guide bearing (F) and make a second pass to the full depth of the profile (g). set it tangent to the fillet underneath the cove profile (I) and then make the cut (J). begin by raising the height of the bit (h).M a k I N g lO TO g O S E C T I O N . To make the cove on the top of the molding. To position the fence. F g h I J 120 Edges and Moldings .
strike the radius of the outside edge of the molding onto the face. Now mount the bit and adjust the height to align with the edge of the stock—and you’re ready to begin (E). I O TO g O I N R E arched Molding Face This technique is useful anytime the profile has a quirk that can’t be shaped from the edge. in which the stock travels in an arc during shaping (a). When you’re finished. strike the radius onto a rectangle of plywood to serve as a cradle. or cradle. Smooth the edge of the stock with a spokeshave (C) and fasten the cradle to the router table fence with screws (d). After milling the stock. make a practice run without power. To shape the curve without spoiling the profile. it’s necessary to keep the face of the stock against the fence and the edge of the stock against the cradle (F). Using the same compass setting. It involves making a curved jig. Now bandsaw the outside (convex) curve of the molding stock (b) and the inside (concave) curve of the cradle. shape the cove using the same process (g).S E C T I Oa kRN g M O l dh Eg S M N . bandsaw the inside radius to complete the molding. d E F g Edges and Moldings 121 . After cutting the bead. You may find it helpful to use a featherboard to maintain pressure against the fence. a b C [ TIp ] To get a feel for the technique.
when shaping. b C 122 Edges and Moldings . Then. a ! s waRNINg Remember to use a starting pin as a fulcrum to enter the cut safely.M a k I N g lO TO g O S E C T I O N .M O l d I N g Sh E R E arched Molding Edge The process of shaping a curved strip of molding is much like shaping a straight strip of molding. The difference is that you’ll first have to bandsaw the curve into the stock (a). you’ll guide the workpiece against a bearing instead of a fence (b). bandsaw the outside radius of the curved molding and smooth the edges (C). After shaping.
flush-trimmingisn’tneededifyoualignthe surfaceswhenyoujointhem.whichisthe processofroutingasurfacelevelorflushto anadjoiningsurface.SECTION 6 Flush-Trimming Flush-Trimming ➤ Flush-Trimming Face Frames (p.Asthebearingrollsalongthe originalsurface. 128) Flush-Trimming Interior (p. 127) Flush-Trimming a Curve (p.Youcanalsoflushtrimworkthathasanunusualshape.Once youusethetechniqueafewtimes.suchas 123 . 129) ➤ ➤ ne of the mostusefultechniques youcanperformwiththerouter isflush-trimming.thespinningbittrimsany excessfromtheadjoiningsurface.Thediameterofthe guidebearingequalsthecuttingdiameter ofthebit.fromeachedgeafterassembly.Butattempts toconstructafaceframetoexactlythesame dimensionasaboxorcabinettowhichitis attachedaretediousandtime-consuming atbest.Forexample.Itrequiresmuchlessefforttomake theframeabout 1⁄16in.Ofcourse.Forexample. O Flush-trimrouterbitsarejuststraight bitswithaguidebearing.you’ll begintodiscoverotherusesforitthatwill giveyougreaterefficiencyandaccuracyin yourwoodworking.youcan flush-trimcurvesafterbandsawing.asshowninthe leftphotoonp.oversizedandthento trim1⁄32in.itcanbe usedtotrimthefaceframeofacabinetflush totheboxtowhichitisattached.which ismuchfasterthanfilingorspindlesanding andyieldsbetterresults.124.
or Spiral? TheleastexpensivestraightbitshavecutBits for Flush-Trimming tingsurfacesthatrunparalleltothebit Youcanchoosefromquiteavarietyofflush.Choosingthebestbitforthe jobensuresthatyou’llachievetheresultsyou Ordinarystraightflush-trimbitsworkwell onsoft.figured stock.shank. tendencytosplinterandteardense. Length ForimprovedcuttinggeometryandsurWhenselectingastraightbitofanysort. A flush-trim bit in any form is basically a straight bit with a guide bearing.Becauserouterbits skewed.Insteadofbeingparalleltotheshank. Ifyouplantouseplasticlaminatein akitchenorforarouter-tabletoporshop cabinet. facequality.Thesearetheleasteffectiveatcutting cleanly. choose the shortest bit that will do the job.SECTION 6 For the smoothest cut.straight-grainedwoodbuthavea areafter.you’llbeguaranteedthatalltheshelvesareidentical.and woods.Flush-trim shearflush-trimbit. 124 Flush-Trimming .Thisminorchangeinthedesign areonlysupportedatoneend.shear.That’sbecausethesmalldiameter you’llseestraight. andlengths.thecuttingsurfacesare bitsarenoexception.especiallywhentrimmingdifficult trimbits. lessdeflectionwithashortbitthanwitha longone. Straight.itis importantthattheguidebearingcontactthe originalsurfaceascloseaspossibletothe surfacetobetrimmed.forthegreatestaccuracy.Also. shelvesforacornercupboard.andspiralflushofrouterbitsdoesn’tallowfortheeffective trimbitsinawideselectionofdiameters cuttinganglefoundonlargershapercutters.Bytrimming eachshelfflushtoatemplate.Openarouter-bitcatalog.youcanflush-trimthelaminate tothesubstrateafterassembly.somemanufacturersoffera theruleofthumbistochoosetheshortestbitthatwillperformthejob.you’llget dramaticallyimprovesthequalityofthecut. Shear.
quickly.Althoughanentire4-ft.mosthome methodisfast.and someideas.Asthecutting edgebecomesdull.andeverypiecefromthefirst centersalsosellpartialsheets.andtearout.sheet Oneofthemostefficientroutingtechniques canbesomewhatexpensive.32sq. Alower-pricedalternativetoplywood you’llneedtomakeatemplateanddecide istemperedhardboard.Butbeforeyoubegin.shankto top. sharpcornerstendtowearquicklyaftera Flush-Trimming 125 .free ofvoids.forthesmoothestpossiblecutthat isabsolutelyfreeoftearoutevenondifficult grain.Ofthematerialsfromwhichto choose.-dia.Theyareavailshank—a top bearing.Theuniquedesignslices andshearsandleavesbehindanincredibly smoothsurfacethatisfreeofchatter.burning.The alotoftemplates.Eventuallythe Materials insertsarereplaced.Becauseofthe steepprice. ➤ TOp Or BOTTOm BEarINg? Flush-trim bits are available with either a top or bottom bearing to suit the job at hand.Hereare careforthenastydustthatitproduces. you’ll want a bit with the bearing at the end—a bottom bearing.Iuseaspiralflush-trimbit. Now you can swap out bearings and Theinsertsarelockedinplaceinthebody use the bit either way.Ofcourse.-dia.SECTION 6 However.theinsertcanberepositionedtoexposeafreshedge.x8-ft.myfavoriteiscabinet-gradeplyTemplates for Flush-Trimming wood. if you’re flush-trimming with a handheld router.Idon’t howtoattachittotheworkpiece.andeasytoshapewith matchesthebearingdiameter. if you’re using a router-table setup with the workpiece locked into a tem- Flush-Trim Bits for Laminate plate jig that rides on the router-table Flush-trimbitsfortrimmingplasticlaminatearesmall. shoptools.Replaceableinsertcuttersensurethatthecuttingdiameteralways Materialsfortemplatesmustbestiff.makes isflush-trimmingwithatemplate. For example. botPlasticlaminateishardandbrittleand tom bearing bit and purchase an extra tendstoweardownevencarbiderather top bearing along with the lock collar. you’ll need a bearing on the bit fitinlaminatetrimrouters.witha1⁄4-in. However.Somebitmanufacturersmakelaminatebitswithreplaceablecarbideinserts.ft. tothelastisidentical.Youcan’t mistakethedistinctivelookofaspiralflushtrimbit—itlookslikeatwistdrillwitha bearingontheend.Theonlydrawbacktospiral flush-trimbitsistheircost.However. ofthebitwithtinyscrews. Want the greatableinstraightaswellasbeveledprofiles. est flexibility? Choose a 3⁄4-in.stable.Ireservetheiruseforwhenthe lesser-pricedshearbitisn’teffective.
Ofcourse. Whenmakingacut.Theblocks alsocounteractthepushingforceofthebit. fewpasseswitharouter.You’ll getthebestpossiblesurfaceifthebitis skimmingoffnomorethan 1⁄32in.Othertimes. screws. Whenthecutissomewhatlargeandthe workpieceissmall.keepitlight.double-sided woodturner’stapeisagoodchoicewhen theholefromafastenerwouldbeseenin thefinishedwork.thebestoptionistoconstructajigandsecuretheworkwithtoggle clamps.aggressivecutstendtoleavethesurface roughandtorn.andtoggle clampsapplypressuretoholdtheworkin placethroughoutthecut.itis importanttolocateametalfastenerwellout ofthecuttingpath.Obviously. especiallywhentheworkisdenseandthe cutislarge.Stopblocksareusedtoaccuratelypositiontheworkpiece. whereitdoesn’tobstructtheview.initiallysqueezethetapedpieces togetherusingaclamp.Itiscriticalfor safetythatthesteelclampsbepositioned clearofthepathofthespinningbit.SECTION 6 Fastening the Template Wheneveryouflush-trimwithatemplate.includingsmallbrads.distinctivecorners.screwsservethesamepurpose.whentrimmingparallel edges.Forthegreatest strength.roundedcornersontheworkinsteadof crisp. 126 Flush-Trimming .Iuse avarietyoffasteners.Thebaseofajigcanalsoserveas thetemplate. you’llneedamethodforsecuringthetemplatetotheworkpiece. Curves can be flush-trimmed with a template jig.Thegripofwoodturner’s tapeissurprisinglystrong.Incontrast.Dependingonthe workathandandthesizeofthecut.Ipreferthe templatepositionedbelowtheworkpiece.Iusestopblocksto positiontheworkpieceinthejig. Althoughit’sexpensive.itisusuallyimportantthattheoverall dimensionisexactaftertrimming.Nails andscrewscanbequicklyattachedand removedaftertrimming.and/ortoggle clamps.Forlarger work. thisalsomeansthatIneedflush-trimbits withtopandbottombearings.Toobtain consistentdimensions.theexactlocationis critical.whichresultsin soft.double-sidedtape.Forexample. Positioning the Template and Workpiece WhetherI’mflush-trimmingwithahandheldrouteroronaroutertable. Positioningaworkpieceonatemplateis oftensimple—justallowanedgetooverhangthetemplateslightlyandfastenin place. Smallbradsworkwellwhenthesubsequentnailholescanbehiddenfromview aftertheworkpieceisassembled.
Smaller cabinets can be trimmed on a router table. pushing the work against the rotation of the bit (C). When trimming with a handheld router. a B C Flush-Trimming 127 . a common technique is to make the face frame slightly proud of the casework and trim it flush after assembly (a).FluSh-TrImmINg Flush-Trimming Face Frames When you’re making cabinets. push the router in a counterclockwise direction around the perimeter of the cabinet. Begin by selecting the shortest bit for the job and setting the height (B).
And a stop block should be fastened to the jig on the trailing end to provide support for the stock (D). Begin by securing the workpiece to the tem- a plate/jig and setting the height of the bit (B). the template should extend beyond the work on the starting end of the cut (C). The guide bearing should follow the template.FluSh-TrImmINg Flush-Trimming a Curve After bandsawing a curve. and the cutting surfaces of the bit should extend slightly above the workpiece. Because this method requires making a curved template. it’s best for efficiently smoothing multiple identical pieces. it’s standard practice to smooth away the saw marks with a file or spokeshave. Remember. Another option is to flush-trim the surface smooth (a). B C D 128 Flush-Trimming .
Begin by laying out the interior cut on the workpiece by tracing the template (B). shy of the final cutline (C). Before flush- trimming. sawing about 1 ⁄ 8 in. Otherwise. position the workpiece and the template adjacent to the bit and adjust the bit height (E). use a scrollsaw or jigsaw to cut the opening in the interior. Next.FluSh-TrImmINg Flush-Trimming Interior There are times when you need to flush-trim an opening to a template (a). you can use double-sided woodturner’s tape. this means working in a counterclockwise feed direction (F). As with any routing operation. a B C D E F Flush-Trimming 129 . Next. it’s necessary to secure the template to the workpiece. it’s important to feed the workpiece against the rotation of the bit. When you’re routing the interior. Small brads work well if the holes will not show in the completed work (D).
Router Joinery. page 180 . page 132 Doors and Drawers.
Because so much router work these days is devoted to building cabinet doors and drawers. . describing how to make a variety of cabinet doors. grooves. In this part of the book. mortise-and-tenon joints and dovetails have tremendous strength as well as broad applications. Due to their interlocking nature and extensive long-grain glue surfaces. Although cutting some joints may require an expensive bit and perhaps a jig. as well as a very efficient approach to making drawers. many others can be made with just a simple straight bit and a fence. I’ll show you how to make a variety of essential joints.PART ThRee Joinery T he router is among the most efficient joint-making tools available. ranging from basic dadoes. and rabbets to mortise-and-tenon joints and dovetails. I’ve devoted considerable attention to the latter two because of their importance in the realm of furniture making and cabinetry. I have also addressed those techniques at some length.
159) Half-Blind Dovetails with the Akeda Jig (p. dadoes. . With your router and a selection of bits. 144) Tongue-and-Groove (p. And no other power tool can match the versatility of the router for making joints. 172) Box Joint (p. and dovetails for casework and drawers. 148) Lap Joint (p. 145) Rabbet with Straight Bit (p. 163) Mortise (p. 178) Rule Joint (p. As woodworkers. box joints. Some jigs you’ll want to purchase. mortise-and-tenon joints. 165) Tenon on Router Table (p. 161) Glue Joint (p. 168) Splined Miter (p. 179) ➤ ➤ ➤ ➤ ➤ ➤ ➤ ➤ ➤ ➤ ➤ ➤ ➤ ➤ ➤ ➤ ➤ W 132 ith a few exceptions— such as carvings or baseball bats—most woodworking projects involve joinery. 173) Box Joint Bit (p. 153) Sliding Dovetail (p. 156) Half-Blind Dovetails with Porter Cable Omnijig (p. 167) Lock Miter (p. 140) Panel Groove (p. Let’s begin by looking at the bits available for router joinery. but many you can make yourself. you can cut grooves. 149) Freehand Routing Dovetails (p. we use edge joints to make wide panels. making many of these joints requires a jig. 150) Shopmade Dovetail Jig (p.section 7 Router Joinery Grooving ➤ Rabbets ➤ Dovetails ➤ other Joints ➤ ➤ ➤ ➤ Stopped Groove (p. 158) Through Dovetails with Katie Jig (p. 176) Rout a Keyhole (p. 147) Dedicated Rabbet Bit (p. and then I’ll discuss various jigs. mortiseand-tenon joints for door frames. 164) Tenon with Jig (p. 142) Two-Pass Groove (p. 170) Bird’s Mouth (p. and even dovetails (see the top right photo on the facing page). Of course.
You can cut curved rabbets with a guide bearing. However. Hands down. too. and even rabbets. Straight Bits Every bit drawer should contain several straight bits in various diameters and lengths. Bits for Joint Making Regardless of the joint you want to make. The most common joinery bits are straight bits. and locks. Straight bits can cut a wide variety of joints. there’s probably a router bit for it. straight bits are among the most versatile that you can own.-dia. But nowadays there are also a number of sophisticated bits that will enable you to quickly and easily create complex cuts such as those for box joints and lock miters. it’s best to use a spiral up-cut bit along with the jig. including this rabbet. choose the bits based upon the quality and integrity of the joint and how it fits with your style of woodworking. A stopped groove is easy to cut on the router table. The number of router bits for joint-making has increased dramatically in the past few years. but they won’t be nearly as smooth as those cut with a rabbet bit. I use straight bits for cutting grooves. If you want to cut mortises. And when I’m installing hinges ➤See “Mortise” on p. dovetail bits. Instead. I’ll use a 1⁄4-in. Rabbet bits are versatile. and you may not want or need them. (Don’t try that with your tablesaw!) To adjust the dimensions of Router Joinery 133 . 164. you can cut rabbets on your tablesaw. dadoes. and rabbeting bits. as some specialty bits are high-priced.section 7 There are router bits available to cut almost any joint. straight bit in a laminate trimmer to quickly cut the recesses. it makes sense to choose carefully. Rabbet Bits Sure. You can also use them for cutting mortises and the fingers of a box joint.
you can instead purchase a router bit that cuts a narrow slot to accept a biscuit.section 7 This rabbet bit comes with a set of bearings to cut rabbets of any size. some grooving bits come as stacking sets of cutters that can be arranged for a specific size groove.004-in. and the precise interlocking fit gives the joint unmatched strength even before the glue is applied. Of course. Instead. I scribe the tails from the pins and complete the joint with handwork. as shown in the top left photo on the facing page. My preferred method for cutting dovetails is by hand. This method of combining router cuts with handwork is more efficient than cutting the joint entirely by hand. the rabbet. I prefer the look and strength of the more pronounced 14-degree pitch. These new 134 Router Joinery . accuracy. yet it results in a “handcrafted” joint. too—most commonly either 7 or 14 degrees. This grooving bit adjusts quickly to within . these are designed for cutting the narrow grooves into a door frame to accommodate a panel edge. Dovetail router bits are available in several angles. However. The long grain of the tails and pins provides plenty of surface area for glue. to make the process of cutting half-blind dovetails more efficient. I use a dovetail bit to first remove most of the waste between the pins. Still others adjust simply with a turn of a knob with . Be aware too that some require a 1⁄4-in. If you have an occasional need for plate joinery (otherwise known as biscuit joinery) but don’t want to invest in a biscuit joiner. this method requires both time and skill. Wing Cutters Similar to rabbeting bits are wing-type bits for cutting grooves.004 in. The cutters are not as wide as those on a rabbet bit.-dia. Afterwards. there are a number of commercial router dovetail jigs on the market. Like dado heads for the tablesaw. as shown in the bottom left photo on the facing page. They typically each require that you purchase a special bit that fits with that brand of jig. In fact. It has both strength and good looks. shank bit in order to slip inside the bushing that guides the router through the jig. you can purchase rabbeting sets that come complete with an incrementally sized selection of bearings. If you prefer. grooving cutters are just what’s needed for working with today’s undersized plywood. Dovetail Bits Nothing speaks of fine craftsmanship like the time-honored dovetail joint. just swap out the guide bearing for one of a different size.
the top and leaf are joined with a special offset hinge. yet it looks much more refined. or you can simply use 1⁄ 2-in. Router Joinery 135 . To make a rule joint. When the leaf is up. Rule joints are both practical and attractive. When the leaf is down. The mating edges of the table and leaf use what has come to be known as a rule joint. Drop-leaf tables have extensions that hinge upward for use. the edges of the table form an attractive ovolo profile. which should be fed slowly through the wood to prevent chatter. Another useful joinery bit is the lock miter. the main tabletop is shaped with a roundover.-radius roundover and cove bits. The joint is easily created with a 90-degree V bit and a 45-degree chamfer bit. The bird’s mouth is also the only method for effectively joining shelves or partitions that are profiled. The bird’s-mouth joint is a V-shaped groove that accepts a 90-degree point. it’s partially supported by the roundover profile. specialty Joints There are a number of specialty joints that you can make with your router. You can purchase matching router bits to produce a rule joint. After shaping. This bit shapes a tongue-and-groove The rule joint is easily made with a router. It is used to join thin dividers and partitions. Some require a special bit. the bird’s mouth joins shelves and partitions. 136).section 7 Routing freehand allows greater spacing flexibility than using a dovetail jig. and the underside of the leaf is shaped with a cove of the same radius as the roundover. hence the name “bird’s mouth” (see the top photo on p. Many jigs require a small shank bit like the one at right. Like a squareedged shelf fit into a groove. while others can be easily made with bits you may already own.
It’s a perfect choice for casework and mitered bracket feet. precisely fitted joints without the time and skill it often requires to cut them by hand. The cutting depth of the bit is important too. Jigs can be simple shopmade guides or elaborate multifunctional tools that are capable of creating a variety of complicated joints. All jigs require careful setup. 136 Router Joinery Pin Tail Baseline . Half-BlinD Dovetail Baseline joint on 45-degree surfaces to prevent the mating parts from slipping out of alignment as the joint is assembled. All jigs perform the same basic function in that they guide the router and bit or the workpiece in a linear path. If the router is handheld. a guide bushing. Jigs for Joinery Jigs allow you to cut fine. That’s where dovetail jigs come in. And there must always be a system in place to guide the bit. The lock miter bit ensures perfect alignment of a 90-degree corner.section 7 The bird’s-mouth joint is an attractive method for joining small partitions. They also require lots of skill to master. If a router table is used. or a bearing on the end or shank of the bit. First. They’re both strong and beautiful—which is why everyone wants to make them (see the drawing below). the jig is either secured to the workpiece or the stock is clamped within the jig. Dovetails are considered by many to be the hallmark of finely crafted furniture. the jig may be guided by the fence and/or miter-gauge slot. Sometimes the jig may be as simple as a backing board attached to the miter gauge. One type of routed joint that is often made using a jig is the dovetail joint. the bit can be guided by the router base.
section 7 They have a strong selling point—allowing you to quickly master a difficult joint with a jig. The best jigs use adjustable guide fingers that allow for greater variation in spacing. subtle variations in angles and spacing. for some woodworkers dovetail jigs may be the best approach. And although commercially available dovetail jigs will cut an accurate joint. Some jigs use a guide bushing mounted to the router baseplate. other dovetail jigs use a bearing-guided bit instead of a basemounted bushing. and the router is fed in a precise path between the fingers. The Akeda jig has fingers that snap into position. Cutting dovetails by hand requires skill. realize that they have a learning curve too. Commercial Dovetail Jigs Dovetail jigs use machined “fingers” to guide the spinning bit through the stock. The narrow pins. they take time to set up. Because the bearing is concentric with the bit shank. can create errors in the final fit if the router is inadvertently rotated during the routing process. As you feed the router through the jig always keep the mark oriented in the same direction. Realize too that no dovetail jig will cut joints with an authentic hand-cut appearance. But if you’ve never used a dovetail jig. because of the imprecise fit between the bushing. and baseplate. and it takes time and patience to master. Router Joinery 137 . In contrast. The stock is secured in the jig with an integral clamping system. it’s usually ➤ See “Freehand-Routing Dovetails” on p. router base. One solution is to mark a point of reference on the router baseplate with a dab of brightly colored paint. This The interlocking fingers of the Akeda® jig make it one of the easiest to set up. the bushing is typically slightly eccentric to the bit. Unfortunately. distinctive baselines of a hand-cut dovetail are all important details that are not duplicated with a jig. Another option is to use a router along with hand tools to create an authentic joint more efficiently than with hand tools alone. 150. Although I prefer to cut dovetails by hand. and the sharp.
Halfblind dovetail jigs have been around almost as long as the router. Both the pin board and the tail board are clamped into the jig and routed simultaneously. And you’ll likely have a much higher level of personal satisfaction from the hand process. will cut both half-blind and through dovetails. Unfortunately this type of jig doesn’t cut half-blind joints. Mill several test pieces and be prepared for several trial runs in order to get the friction fit you’re after. while allowing you to vary the spacing of the tails and pins. through. The tail board This Porter Cable Omnijig is one of the most versatile dovetail jigs available. Shopmade Jigs There are a number of router jigs for cutting precise joinery that you can make in 138 Router Joinery . The fit of the joint is determined by the thickness of the backer board. By the time you’ve read the manual and made a series of trial-and-error cuts. you could probably have learned the basics of cutting dovetails by hand. such as those used in drawer construction. So if you want half-blind dovetails.section 7 This Katie® jig is well constructed and versatile. you would have to change the depth of the box. and pin board are each routed separately. A guide bushing on the router base directs the path of the bit between the “fingers” or guides on the jig. easier to achieve a precise joint with jigs that use this system. and combination. Through dovetail jigs require using two bits: a straight bit to cut the pins and a dovetail bit to cut the tails. There are three types of commercially available dovetail jigs—half-blind. Combination jigs. as the name implies. To solve the problem. so you’ll often end up with an unattractive termination at one end of the joint. which will cut both. using a different set of guides. you’ll have to cover the joint with a separate piece of stock once the dovetails are assembled. These jigs cut the mechanical-looking joints that are associated with mass-produced furniture. The designs of these jigs are ingenious. but their setup and use are complex. the setup itself can be time-consuming. There is absolutely no flexibility with the spacing on these jigs. The fit of the joint is determined by the cutting depth of the bit. Although this type of jig is fairly simple to use once set up.
For example. you’ll probably want to make a dedicated mortise jig. Although some woodworkers use a Tsquare-type jig to guide the router when cutting dadoes. A miter gauge and backing board makes a simple yet effective jig. It’s simple to construct and it accommodates stock of a variety of sizes. The jig holds the workpiece securely while guiding the router in a linear path. By positioning the guide against the inside of the box. as shown in the drawing above. The tails are marked out from the pins and cut with a dovetail saw. This method is a real time-saver too. It requires that you first carefully lay out each dado and then position the jig according to the layout prior to each cut. Router Joinery 139 . Box joints can be easily cut with a straight bit on the router table. if you’d like to frequently use the router for mortise-andtenon joinery. The entire process is error-prone. BIR 32 The space between the pins on half-blind dovetails can be routed quickly with a dovetail template. your own shop. because there’s no need to measure and mark the location of each joint. perfect location is assured and mating joints match perfectly. this type of jig has a major drawback. A guide bushing follows the template to keep the spacing accurate and the cuts uniform. Routing sliding dovetails with a template ensures perfect spacing. A block glued into the backing board ensures perfect spacing.section 7 MoRtisinG JiG Sides support plunge router. A much simpler method is to rout the dadoes in the box after assembly with a strip of thin plywood to guide the router. Work is positioned between sides.
G R o ov i n G
Tongue-and-groove joints are strong and useful, but not necessarily attractive, especially when viewed from the end of the workpiece (a). But they’re easy to hide just by making a stop cut. Depending on the project, you can stop the groove at one end or both ends. A straight bit works best for a stop cut because it creates an abrupt, distinctive stopping point for the groove, thereby eliminating most of the handwork required when you’re completing the wide arc left by a grooving bit.
Begin by adjusting the bit height (B). Typically the depth of the groove is one-third to one-half of the bit diameter. In order to provide the greatest support for the stock and provide for your safety, close the fence halves (c). Next, position the fence the correct distance from the bit and lock it in place (D). To make a stop cut safely and accurately, it’s important to secure a stop to the fence. Otherwise, you risk kickback while plunging the workpiece onto the spinning bit.
G R o ov i n G
To locate the position of the stop block, first lay out the groove and make marks at the starting and stopping points (e). Next, make a pair of marks on the fence to indicate the parameters of the bit (f). Finally, align the leading layout line on the workpiece adjacent to the forward mark on the fence and clamp the stop block in place (G). To cut the groove, position the stock against the stop block and slowly lower it onto the spinning bit (H). Now push the stock forward (i). Stop when the trailing layout mark on the stock aligns with the mark on the fence (J).
G R o ov i n G
When constructing cabinets for the shop or kitchen, it’s typical to join solid wood with plywood. For example, plywood is often used for door panels and drawer bottoms. Because much of today’s plywood is dimensioned undersized, it’s necessary to adjust the panel groove for a precise fit (a). Otherwise the panel will rattle in the framework each time the door is opened. This bit from Amana® uses two interlocking cutters, much like a stacking dado head. The cutters are separated by a compression spring and are easily adjusted by turning a knurled adjusting screw. This is a unique bit that makes cutting odd-sized grooves quick and precise (B).
Begin by securing the bit in the router collet and loosening the lock nut (c). Turn the nut counterclockwise until it stops against the limiter (D). Next, turn the adjuster to dial in the size of the
G R o ov i n G
groove (e). Marks are etched on the bit to make it easier to make precise settings. each mark represents .004 in. Remember to tighten the lock nut once you’ve adjusted the bit. Now adjust the cutting height by placing a graduated square next to the bit (f). To adjust the bit for grooving in one pass, position the guidebearing tangent to the fence (G). Remember to reduce the fence opening as much as possible for maximum safety and stock support (H). Finally, position featherboards to hold the stock against the fence, and then make the cut (i).
away from the bit (G). the standard method for avoiding potentially hazardous kickback. Using this method. you’ll cut against the bit rotation. it’s important to position the bit to cut on the outside of the groove. Begin by closing the fence opening (B) and reducing the table opening (c). c D e f G 144 Router Joinery . these two steps are always important for providing safety and maximum support to the workpiece. So let’s take a look at the safe approach for widening a groove. If the bit is positioned to cut on the inside of the groove. move the fence back.G R o ov i n G two-Pass Groove Sometimes it’s necessary to cut a groove in two passes because either the bit you’re using is too small or the groove may be an odd size for which there is no bit with the proper size cutter a B (a). To widen the groove. To make the second pass safely. the router will grab the work and possibly draw your hands into the spinning bit. set the bit height (D). Next. Now cut the initial groove (f). position the fence. and lock it in place (e).
and lock the fence in place (D). With glue added. such as in wood floors (a).) B c D e Router Joinery 145 . With the bit set up to cut a tongue. you may want to initially position the fence forward. the dry joint keeps parts aligned while allowing for seasonal wood movement. This way you’ll avoid the tearout associated with a too-heavy cut. adjust the bit height so that it is centered on the stock thickness (c).) Now you’re ready to cut the tongue (e).G R o ov i n G tongue-and-Groove The tongue-and-groove joint is commonly used for joining panels edge to edge. Now use a straightedge to position the fence tangent to the guide bearing. (Text continues on p. for taking two passes. Although the joint can be cut with multiple passes of a straight bit. (If the stock is very dense. 146. Tongue-andgroove joints are often assembled without glue. the tongue-andgroove is useful for aligning the corners of a box a (B) or joining a face frame to a carcase. a dedicated bit like the one used in this photo-essay makes the process more accurate and efficient.
To secure the arbor nut. Now secure the router shank with a wrench and loosen the arbor nut on the end of the bit (f). Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for restacking the parts on the bit. To cut a groove on the corner. The next step is to adjust the height of the bit to correspond to the first half of the joint. For the greatest accuracy. it’s best to lock the bit in the collet first. position the stock with the tongue next to the bit. the cutter should always be positioned for counterclockwise f rotation when you’re viewing the bit from the threaded end (G). position the stock on edge and support it with featherboards to keep it firmly against the fence throughout the cut (J). you’ll first have to remove one of the cutters from the bit shank. H i J 146 Router Joinery .G R o ov i n G To cut the groove. Remember. But first disconnect the router from its power source. Now make the cut (i). and adjust the bit height G (H).
Two or more light passes eliminate the tearout that can easily occur when you’re routing hard. Begin by making a light scoring pass (e). Next. a straight bit works well too. a B c D e f G Router Joinery 147 . Although a dedicated rabbet bit works best for the job. I position a board on the layout line as it contacts the cutting edge of the bit (f). To accurately set the fence for the final pass. brittle stock in one large pass (G). Minimize the fence opening to maximize the support for the stock (c). and you may already have one in your kit (a). As with any setup.RaBBets Rabbet with straight Bit A rabbet is a recess along the edge of the stock that’s used for a variety of purposes—from creating door and drawer lips to cutting a recess in case sides to hide the back of a cabinet. which will make a light incision on the stock and limit the possibility of tearout on the final pass. position the layout adjacent to the bit and adjust the bit height to correspond with the layout (B). Begin by laying out the height and depth of the rabbet on the corner of the workpiece. it’s important to use a guard (D).
Dedicated Rabbet Bit
For cutting lots of large rabbets in hardwood, a rabbet bit is the best choice. Rabbet bits have cutting angles superior to those of straight bits, and so they’ll create a smooth, clean joint free of tearout (a).
Begin by mounting the bit securely in the collet
(B). Next, use a ruled square to accurately adjust
the cutting height (c). In order to provide the maximum support for the workpiece, reduce the size of the fence opening as much as possible
(D). Now position the workpiece adjacent to the
bit and adjust the fence for the cutting depth (e). To shield your hands and help hold the stock, position a guard over the bit (f) Remember, always feed the workpiece from right to left, against the rotation of the bit (G).
A lap joint can be substituted for a mortiseand-tenon joint or, as shown here, used to join backboards in casework (a). Like the tongue-andgroove joint, the completed lap joint is commonly assembled without glue to allow for seasonal wood movement without a gap between mating boards.
A lap joint is essentially two rabbets of equal dimension. The key to making the joint is to cut away one-half of the stock thickness from each of the mating boards. After layout, position the stock next to the bit as an aid for adjusting the bit height (B). If you’re using a straight bit, as pictured here, it’s best to first take a light scoring cut to avoid splintering along the edge (c). Next, position a guard over the bit (D) and make the cut (e). I use a second piece of stock aligned with both the layout marks and the bit to set the fence for the final pass (f).
D ov e ta i l s
freehand Routing Dovetails
Dovetails undoubtedly have a mystique associated with them. In reality, they’re quite easy to cut—it’s essentially just sawing and chiseling to a line (a). Although jigs may be an efficient method of creating dovetails, especially in a production setting, there’s a special satisfaction that
comes from cutting them by hand. however, to ease the tedium that can come from chopping all the waste from between the pins of a halfblind dovetail, I use a router to quickly remove the excess wood. Although there is still handwork involved with this method, using the router to remove the excess stock makes this a very efficient process for creating authentic dovetail joinery with a hand-cut appearance. here are the steps I use:
The first step is to mark the baselines with a sharp gauge (B). After marking the tail board, use the same measurement to mark the pin board
(c). Using the same measurement on each of the
adjoining pieces ensures a precise fit. As you pull the gauge across the stock, use light pressure to avoid tearing the grain. A sharp, crisp baseline is critical to setting the router bit depth. The next step is to lay out the pins. One of the advantages of this method over using a jig is that you can make the pins any size you wish. I begin by marking the pins at the edges of the stock (D). For strength, I make the end pins wider than the rest. Afterwards, I locate the center of the remaining pins with dividers (e). each step of the divider represents the center of a pin. You can easily increase or decrease the pin size during this step by adjusting the setting on the dividers. Now mark the slope of each pin with an adjustable bevel (f). I use a 14-degree angle, which matches the slope of the dovetail bit. Use a square to mark the face of each pin to
D ov e ta i l s
the baseline (G). Photo (H) shows the complete layout. The next step is to rout the space between the pins. First set the depth of the dovetail bit so that it just touches the incised baseline (i). A router with a micrometer depth adjuster makes this step much easier. Clamp the stock securely to the benchtop and rout between the layout lines
(J). As you rout, work from left to right against
the rotation of the bit. Also, to avoid undercutting the joint, don’t attempt to rout up to the baseline. Instead, leave a small amount of stock to trim away with the chisel afterwards. A small degree of undercut is OK because it is an end-grain surface, but a severe undercut may weaken the base of the joint. Don’t worry about minor variations in pin width or spacing; it only adds to the “hand-cut” look. Besides, you’ll be cutting the tails to fit. Now use a chisel and mallet to complete the socket between each pin (K). Once you’ve completed chopping to the baseline, a quick check with a small square will show you if you have any errant surfaces that need to be trimmed further. Although routing freehand may seem difficult, it is actually quite easy to create smooth, 90-degree pins if the layout is accurate and the bit is sharp. In fact, with just a small amount of practice, you’ll be surprised at how accurately you can perform this step of the process. Notice how the router (Text continues on p. 152.)
The next step is to square the corners to the baseline with a chisel and mallet (M).D ov e ta i l s bit leaves the back of each space rounded (l). you’re ready to begin sawing. Complete the layout by transferring each mark around the end of the board (o). n o P Q R s 152 Router Joinery . Angle the saw to follow the 14-degree slope of the router bit and saw to the baseline (P). Position the routed pin board over the tail board adjacent to the base line. look carefully for tight spots and pare them away (R). Next. remove the waste between the tails with a sharp chisel (Q). Assemble the completed joint with gentle taps of a mallet (s). As you assemble the joint. l M With the layout complete. Use a sharp knife to mark the tails from the pins (n). Now you’re ready to create the tails.
-thick plywood. not MDF. Next. 154. The bottom line is this: The jig in this essay makes quick work of creating the pins on a halfblind dovetail. Once you’ve constructed the jig. wide for strength. Fingers must be at least in. One method for easing the tedium of chopping all those tail sockets is to rout them out first using a jig to guide the router (B) and then square up the corners with a chisel and mallet. In order to secure the bearing in place. and for good reason.D ov e ta i l s shopmade Dovetail Jig All woodworkers want to make the dovetail joint a part of their work. it’s the half-blind form that’s typically used for drawers and casework. Stops locate the workpiece. And if you’re making multiple boxes the same size. select a dovetail bit. you’ll still need to learn two important aspects of dovetailing: sawing and chiseling to a line. the tails can be scribed from the sockets and sawn to fit. And although the through dovetail is faster and easier to cut than the half-blind version. this process requires a bit with a flange at the top of the shank above the cutter.” on p. and mount a guide bearing on the shank (c). Place the pin board in the jig with the inside (Text continues on p. lay out the joint as usual by marking the baseline on the end (D) and the face of the stock (e). however.) D e Router Joinery 153 . 49. the dovetail joint is undoubtedly the strongest. a 5/16 BIR 43 B c ➤ See “Changing Bearings. the jig is especially worth the few minutes that it requires to construct. Use 3/4-in. be aware that with this jig. But the jig will quickly and accurately remove much of the excess stock so that you can instead focus your efforts on the finer details. Bearing on bit follows fingers. most beautiful method for joining the sides of casework and drawers (a). Once the sockets are cut out.
but it’s a good idea to position it near the bit anyway. When squaring the corners. grasping it as you would a pencil (M). a place to fasten a guard (i). Secure the workpiece with toggle clamps and put a clamp at the opposite end to lock it in place (G). it isn’t J K l M 154 Router Joinery . again look for the tiny burnished area to remain. It will prove useful by providing a hookup for dust collection and. indicating that you have split the baseline in two. As you chisel back to the baseline scribed across the face of the workpiece. the cut should reveal a tiny line of burnished surface at the very end of the socket. Now you’re ready to rout the tail sockets. This method will provide you with the greatest control. When the bit is accurately positioned. use a narrow chisel (such as a 3⁄ 8 in. most importantly. created when the marking gauge pin scribed the baseline across the end grain (l). there will be none of f G the tedious hand work that is typically required to clean up the bottom of the space between each tail! The router table fence isn’t actually required for use with this jig. Now use the baseline on the pin board to adjust the height of the bit. most of the work on the pin board is complete. Place the jig adjacent to the bit and adjust the height until the corner of the bit grazes the baseline (H). Begin on the left corner of the H i workpiece (J) and work toward the right (K). Although conventional wisdom would dictate using a wide chisel. which creates the pins.D ov e ta i l s facing down (f). If your bit depth is set correctly. all that remains is to square the inside corners. Once you’ve completed the routing.).
as you’re chopping out the corners. it’s not really useful as a glue surface. Then mark the tails with a sharp knife (P). Once you’ve squared the corners. First position the pin board over the tail board and clamp it in place. the next step is to lay out and cut the tails. use a chisel to remove the waste (R). n o P Q R s Router Joinery 155 . Also. slide the tail board into the pin board and admire your work (s). Because this surface is end grain.D ov e ta i l s needed because the scribed baseline keeps the chisel in a straight path. Now carefully saw to the layout line (Q). And a narrow chisel is easier to control because it has less resistance than a wide one. As you make each cut. Finally. and a small degree of undercut will make it easier to assemble the joint. it’s a good idea to undercut the back wall slightly (n). After sawing the tails. remember to position the chisel on the baseline (o).
B). Begin by routing the dovetail sockets in the case side (C). Next. Thin plywood guides ensure uniform spacing and the correct position of each socket. which is used to join the sides of drawers and casework. This process involves both handheld routing and the router table. mount the dovetail bit in the table (d) a and reduce the table opening to maximize stock B BIR 33 C d 156 Router Joinery . the sliding dovetail is most often used to join drawer dividers to the sides of the case (a.d ov e ta i l s sliding dovetail Unlike a row of dovetails.
Set the height of the bit to the socket depth (F) and reduce the fence opening (G). Remember to distance your hand from the bit by using a push block (H). e F G H Router Joinery 157 . Now clamp a board to the workpiece at 90 degrees to provide stability as you make the cut.d ov e ta i l s support (e).
the mating members of the joint must be mounted offset to each a B C other—in this case by 3⁄16 in. Next. Begin by marking the end of the drawer front 3 ⁄16 in.-dia. Now position the half-blind dovetail template so d e that the bottom of the gullet midway between the fingers is 19⁄32 in. i J 158 Router Joinery . To use the jig. To set up the router. J). it cuts both members of a halfblind dovetail joint simultaneously. Remember. never attempt to lift the router directly from the jig. position the drawer side in the front of the jig and lock it in place with the clamp (C).d ov e ta i l s Half-Blind dovetails with Porter Cable omnijig This Porter Cable Omnijig® can cut a number of variations from through to sliding dovetails (a). Position the stop bars against the stock and lock them in place (e) for use on subsequent cuts. template guide to the router baseplate. In order for the process to work effectively. dovetail bit in the collet and adjust the height to 19⁄32 in. Now position the drawer front in the top of the jig so that the 3⁄16 in. (H). from the end of the drawer front (F). layout mark aligns with the drawer side (d). always slide the router in from F G H the front and feed it from left to right (i. Like many jigs. Then secure a 1 ⁄2-in. Instead. Photo (G) shows the stock correctly positioned in the jig and ready for the cut. attach a 5⁄ 8-in. slide it out from the front. from the edge (B).-dia.
And it does have adjustable guides so that you can vary the spacing to suit your taste and the job at hand. Next.-thick plywood as spacers between the stock and the guides. 160. C d (Text continues on p. adjust the guides a B (B) so that the joint will begin and end with a pin (C). Beginning with the pin board. one for the pins and the other for the tails (a). which I prefer. Position 1⁄4-in. Of course it’s important to account for the loss of material when you’re milling the stock to size. and then clamp the stock firmly in place (e). The jig is designed so that the tails and pins on the completed joint will protrude. the Katie is one of the least complex to set up.) e F Router Joinery 159 .d ov e ta i l s through dovetails with Katie Jig Among dovetail jigs. Each guide has two ends. Now remove the plywood spacers (F). position the edge stop against the workpiece and lock it in place (d). The edge stops will align the boards in the jig for subsequent cuts. In this photo-essay I show how to create the joint so that the mating surfaces are flush. The idea is that you can flush-trim the joint after assembly.
The depth equals the sum of the pin board thickness. The cutting depth should equal the sum of the tail-board thickness. you’ll need to switch to the straight bit. i J K 160 Router Joinery . guide thickness. G H Before routing the pins. and the spacer (J). make the cut (K). lock the bit in the collet and adjust the cutting depth (G). and the spacer. Using the straight end of the guide fork. Always feed the router from left to right as you’re facing the tail board (i). cut the tails (H).d ov e ta i l s To set up the router. the guide thickness. Finally.
Begin by locking the first tail guide in position 1⁄ 8 in. Position the remaining guides and mark their locations on the jig (C).) a B C d e F G Router Joinery 161 . snap the remaining guides into position (e). the Akeda® is a relative newcomer (a). away from the reference mark (B). The first and last guides should slightly overlap the edges of the pin board (d). Now set the depth of the bit (G) (Text continues on p. Once the first and last guides are in place. Next. It will cut both half-blind and through dovetails.d ov e ta i l s Half-Blind dovetails with the akeda Jig Among dovetail jigs. 162. position the tail board in the front of the jig firmly underneath the guides and clamp in place (F).
d ov e ta i l s and cut the tails (H). I use a small cutoff from the tail board as a gauge (K). For the greatest accuracy. It should extend beyond the pin bar a distance equal to the thickness of the tail board. Now place the pin board in the top of the jig. Make the cut on the pin board (l) and assemble the joint (M). be very careful not to cut the area between the guides (i). To cut the pins. H i J K M l 162 Router Joinery . first remove the tail guides and then put the pin guides in the same location according to the layout marks that you made previously (J). As you rout.
so remember to use a guard to shield your hands (e). Next.ot H e R J o i N t s Glue Joint When two boards are glued edge to edge. Begin by adjusting the bit height to cut precisely in the center of the stock thickness (B). reduce the fence opening to increase safety and support of the stock as it is cut (C). the joint is actually stronger than the surrounding wood. Now you’re ready to make the cut (F). place it tangent to the smallest cutting circle on the bit (d). Pre-cutting the edges with a glue joint bit can help with alignment (a). a B C d e F Router Joinery 163 . To accurately locate the fence position. This is a large bit.
it tends to cut slowly and overheat. most straight bits are not designed for plunging. Begin by measuring (B) and marking the mortise location (C). you’ll first need to set the cutting depth on the plunge router. But you’ll first need to construct a jig to hold the workpiece and provide stability to the router. A much better choice is an upcut spiral bit. Next. a B C d Now. One approach to cutting the mortise is with a router and a straight bit. Also. whose spiral flutes eject the chips from the mortise. Although an ordinary straight bit will work.ot H e R J o i N t s Mortise The mortise-and-tenon joint is undoubtedly the strongest method for joining frame members (a). Next. e F 164 Router Joinery . plunge the bit into the workpiece and feed it to the opposite end of the mortise layout (F). position the router guide against the edge of the jig (e). To cut the mortise. position the work in the jig and secure each end with clamps (d).
This method uses a router jig to hold the workpiece and guide the router in a straight path across the stock (a). Workpiece Guide for router base a B BIR 48 C (Text continues on p. As always. but undoubtedly one of the fastest ways is with a router. it’s best to cut the mortise first. There are a number of methods for cutting the joint. Slide the workpiece under the router guide and secure it in position with a toggle clamp (d). which resists racking forces. because it’s easier to cut the tenon to fit the mortise than vice versa. The joint has tremendous strength due to the mechanical interlock between the mating parts. After each pass. 166. Begin by cutting at the end of the tenon so that the router will gain additional support from the portion of the stock that remains uncut (e).) d e Router Joinery 165 . use the gauge line to adjust the cutting depth of the router bit (B).ot H e R J o i N t s tenon with Jig One of the most important joints a woodworker can choose is the mortise-and-tenon joint. With the workpiece secure in the jig. you’re ready to make the first cut. Next. reposition the router closer to the tenon shoulder Stick serves as a stop. and the shoulder. the large long-grain gluing surface.The first step is to use a gauge and lay out the tenon on a sample piece. A stick placed into the jig serves as a stop to limit the length of the tenon (C).
F G H i J K 166 Router Joinery . Depending on the diameter of the bit and the length of the tenon. To avoid splintering the shoulder of the tenon as the bit exits the cut. two or three passes should be enough to rout the face of the tenon (i). Now repeat the process on the opposite side of the stock (J) to complete the tenon (K). you can first rout the corner (H). The final pass will be with the router base positioned against the guide (G).ot H e R J o i N t s for the next pass (F).
Make the first pass along the end of the stock (B) and then take as many additional passes as necessary. 75. I always check the setup on a sample piece to ensure a snug fit between the tenon and the mortise (F). with no backlash. while the miter gauge is used to guide and support the stock. The router table is fast and easy to set up. Router lifts have built-in micrometers that allow you to adjust the bit height to within . place the end of the stock against the fence and make the cut along the shoulder (C).001 in. C d e F Router Joinery 167 . The fence serves as a depth stop to control the tenon length. be certain that the miter gauge is locked at exactly 90 degrees. a B ➤ See “Making a Sled” on p. working toward the shoulder. especially if your table is equipped with a lift. The precision of a lift is a significant advantage for routing precise interlocking joints. Make sure to use a guard to provide a barrier between your hands and the spinning bit. and adjust the bit height to the layout line (a). Mount a large-diameter straight bit in the router. A backing board fastened to the miter gauge will eliminate splintering at the end of the cut. lay out the tenon on a sample piece. Before cutting. If your table lacks a miter-gauge slot. you can use a shopmade sled that rides along the table edge. it’s important to use both the fence and the miter gauge. Several passes will complete the tenon (e). When cutting tenons on the router table. For the last pass.ot H e R J o i N t s tenon on the Router table A router table is a great alternative to a jig for cutting tenons. Invert the stock and repeat the process on the opposite face (d).
mill the two halves of the joint from the same board (B). the miter joint is a good choice. you’ll need to adjust the fence to be parallel to the miter-gauge slot (e). Because the miter gauge is used in this process. the two halves can easily become misaligned as a result of the lubricity of the glue. The next step is to adjust the fence. Begin by adjusting the bit height (C). But cutting and fitting a perfect miter can be tricky. As you assemble the joint. This unique joint features an interlocking tongue and groove to create a flawless 45-degree miter (a). Because of the large bit diameter. it’s important to increase stock support and safety by creating a zeroclearance opening (d). To make the grain continue around the corner.ot H e R J o i N t s lock Miter To make grain “turn the corner” without a visible seam. Position a B Fence Workpiece Workpiece Fence Table First cut Stock face up Table Second cut Stock on end C BIR 34 168 Router Joinery . One solution is to use a lock miter.
ot H e R J o i N t s a guard over the bit (F). attach a backing board to the miter gauge (G). clamp a board to the stock at 90 degrees and use a featherboard (i). Now cut the first half of the joint. To complete the setup. d e F G H i Router Joinery 169 . The mating half of the joint must be positioned on end. Position the stock on the table with the outer face up and make the cut (H). For support.
the most important consideration when making the joint is to run the grain of the spline perpendicular to the joint line. whether at 90 degrees or some other angle. install a grooving bit in the router table and adjust the fence tangent to the guide bearing on the bit (B). begin by sawing the miter and checking it for accuracy by fitting the parts together within the legs of a square (a). a B To make the joint. Next. The only real downside to the miter is that it is inherently weak. The traditional method of reinforcement is to add a spline. close the fence halves as much as possible (C). position a guard above the bit (d). It’s important that the cut be centered exactly across C d 170 Router Joinery . The miter is a simple yet elegant way to change directions. you can downplay the spline by making it from the same wood as your primary pieces.ot H e R J o i N t s splined Miter Miters are used whenever the goal is to hide end grain. However. If the spline grain runs parallel to the joint line. you can emphasize the spline by making it of a contrasting wood. because the joint primarily consists of end-grain contact. The spline is simply a third piece of wood incorporated into the joint to create long-grain surface area for glue. Also. the joint will be weak. From an aesthetic standpoint. For the greatest safety and accuracy. Alternatively.
otherwise.ot H e R J o i N t s the thickness of the stock. One method is to measure with a square set as a depth gauge (e). e F G H i Router Joinery 171 . you’re ready to cut the grooves for the spline. It’s actually easier and much less awkward to adjust the bit height to center on the stock. However. To complete the joint. Rotate the head of the miter gauge to 45 degrees. Once you’re satisfied that the setup is accurate. you’ll need to make half the cuts with the miter gauge turned away from the fence. using a dial caliper is more accurate (F). and make the cut (G). size the thickness of the spline for a snug fit within the groove (H) and then assemble the joints with glue (i).
the cutting geometry cuts cleaner than the groove bit used for the V (d). A 90-degree V cut in the first piece joins with a point on the end of the mating piece to create a joint that is both strong and attractive (a). Begin by routing the V groove (B).ot H e R J o i N t s Bird’s Mouth A bird’s-mouth joint is essentially a mitered tongue-and-groove joint. the best choice is a 45-degree chamfer bit. The depth of the groove is less important than the width. a B C d 172 Router Joinery . it must equal the thickness of the mating piece (C). To cut the point.
the rectangle is more eye-pleasing. a Finger is more attractive and has increased strength when proportioned as a long rectangle. Adjust the height of the bit so that it is slightly greater than the stock thickness. For example. After assembly. snug-fitting box joints is to use a simple jig that ensures perfect spacing (B). as opposed to a square. it has a much better appearance when cut with a router. as opposed to the slightly jagged surface created by a saw blade. smooth bottom between the fingers. Besides being stronger than a square due to its larger glue surface area.-thick stock. This creates a finger with the proportions of a long rectangle. the fingers are sanded flush. The length of the stock should be at least twice the width of the material used (Text continues on p. the box joint gets its ” strength from its mechanical interlock as well as the large amounts of long-grain glue surface area (a). 174. The key to making strong. However. Of course it’s important to account for this loss of stock when sizing the parts for the box. This will cause the fingers to protrude slightly from the stock surface once the box is assembled. Although you can cut the box joint with a tablesaw. To make the jig.-dia. Like the dovetail. Begin by selecting a straight bit to cut the space between the fingers. bit on 1⁄2-in. first mill a piece of stock to serve as a backing board. Because a box joint lacks the tapered interlock of a dovetail joint’s tails and pins. Although you can purchase a jig. I select a bit with a diameter that is three-fourths of the thickness of the stock. it more than makes up for this by its ease of construction. Otherwise the completed box will end up smaller than you intended. it’s easy to make your own.ot H e R J o i N t s Box Joint The box joint comprises rows of interlocking “fingers. it’s not quite as strong. That’s because a router bit creates a square. BIR 44 B Router Joinery 173 . in this photoessay I’m using a 3⁄ 8-in.) Joint looks best when it begins and ends with a full finger.
just align the edge of the stock with the F void in the backing board (K).ot H e R J o i N t s to create the box joint. this half must begin with a space. Therefore. C As each notch is cut. The remaining cuts are now made by slipping each previous cut over the spacing stick (M). This will provide plenty of support as the joint is cut into the workpiece. it is important that the stick be positioned from the router bit at a distance that is equal to the bit diameter. Now continue the process across the end of the stock. Position d the second bit between the stick and the bit in the router (F). Securely clamp the backing board to the miter gauge (C) and feed it into the bit to create a slot (d). Now you’re ready to begin cutting the joint. This will start the board with a finger. rest the cut against the stick to align the stock for the next cut (l). there is an easy way to ensure perfect spacing. Slip e the freshly cut space over the stick and make the next cut (J). it is slipped over the stick to locate the correct position for the subsequent cut. Now carefully fit a stick into the slot (e). To accurately make the first cut. the mating board will begin with a space. Just use a second bit that is the same diameter as the first. On the first half of the joint. position the stock against the stick for the first cut (H). Of course the next step is to rout the second half of the joint. Apply glue to the fingers and slip the joint together (N). G 174 Router Joinery . Now. Now make the first cut (i). Fasten the backing board to the miter gauge (G). This is the trickiest part of the setup. The slot and stick will serve as a spacer to locate the position of each cut. Remember. However. which will interlock with the finger on the first half of the joint.
ot H e R J o i N t s H i J K l M N Router Joinery 175 .
the box joint gets its strength from lots of long-grain gluing surface. Next. you can use multiple passes of a straight bit along with a jig to guide the stock and control the spacing of each cut. Also. As you lock the fence in place. it’s not practical to cut box joints on full-sized casework. it’s a good idea to first position the parts on the bench in the order of assembly and label the cuts. make sure that it is parallel with the miter gauge slot (d). Like the dovetail. the box joint is primarily used for joining the corners of boxes. When designing your box joints. Minimize the fence opening to d 176 Router Joinery . and each corner of the box is quickly cut in one or two passes. Or you can opt to use a finger joint bit like the one in this essay. To cut a box joint. the mating half must end with a matching finger. the box joint does not have the wedging action of the angled tails and pins. Unlike the dovetail. so it is not nearly as strong. instead of a separate pass for each individual finger. when sizing the stock. Because of these issues. position the fence tangent to the guide bearing (C). remember that one half of the joint must begin with a full socket. Making box joints with this special bit is more efficient. remember to rip it to a width that is a multiple of the finger/socket width. To avoid confusion. the setup is fast. a B C Begin by adjusting the bit height so that the first cutter in the stack is flush with the lower edge of the stock (B). I limit the use of the box joint to small boxes. Also. as well as the mechanical interlock of the adjoining halves (a).ot H e R J o i N t s Box Joint Bit As the name implies.
you’ll need to invert the stock for a second pass.ot H e R J o i N t s provide support for the workpiece and to create a barrier around the bit (e). you’re ready to make the cuts on all the parts. clamp it securely to the backing board and make the cut (G). fasten a backing board to the miter gauge (F). Also. This is a large bit. With the setup complete. Remember to position each part according to the labels that you made earlier. Instead. e F G H Router Joinery 177 . Also. This will ensure alignment during assembly. But first adjust the bit so that the cutter aligns with the first cut (H). if you’re cutting a joint on stock that is wider than the bit height. so don’t attempt to hold the workpiece with your hand.
this unique. Once plunged into the stock. and use stops to position the layout line over the bit (d). Position the frame between the stops and against the fence. will require at least two appropriately spaced holes. largediameter bit creates an undercut hole designed to capture the head of a nail or screw (B). However.ot H e R J o i N t s Rout a Keyhole A keyhole bit isn’t really for routing a true keyhole but for a small. Small frames. C d e F G 178 Router Joinery . mark a line to indicate the stopping point of the elongation (e). But first. Now pull the frame away from the fence until it aligns with the layout mark that you made earlier (G). you can easily plunge the frame onto the spinning bit and pull it away from the fence to elongate the keyhole. and plunge the frame into the bit (F). elongated hole in the back of a frame or shelf for ease of hanging (a). By trapping the frame on three sides. such as a shelf. typically require only one hole. a large item. Position the fence near the bit. Begin by marking the desired location of the key- a B hole (C). such as the one pictured here.
before you jump in to this process. one leaf is longer than the other. Photo Hinge is offset 1/64 in. After squaring the mortise with a chisel. fillet. you’ll need special drop-leaf hinges. I’m using 1⁄2-in. A cove is cut on the lower edge of the leaf to mate with a thumbnail profile on the table edge. Conventional wisdom is to locate the hinge barrel directly below the fillet. Choose a radius that will leave a 1⁄4-in. For this unique movable joint to function properly. I prefer to position the barrel an additional 1⁄64 in. the two profiles mesh to create an attractive ovolo profile (B). I speed this up with a small router and a straight bit (d). e F Router Joinery 179 . it is important that the cove and thumbnail profiles match. You can cut the profiles with molding planes if you are fortunate enough to have a matching pair. radius bits with a 3⁄4-in. mortise for the hinge thickness. toward the edge to prevent the finish from wearing away each time the leaf is raised or lowered. Or you can shape the profiles with router bits. mark the hinge position with a knife (C). The result is both beautiful and functional. Next. For the example in these photos. top and leaf thickness. cut a recess for the hinge barrel and fasten the hinges in place (e). When the leaf is dropped.ot H e R J o i N t s Rule Joint Rule joints are used for drop leaves on tables (a). Also. After shaping the cove and thumbnail. toward edge. anything heavier tends to look clumsy. a B BIRD 3-E C d (F) shows leaf in position.
201) Shaping a Lipped Door Edge (p.andpanel 180 F details. 202) Lock Mortise (p.finish.suchas paneledchestsandroll-topdesks.Bychangingdesignelements.eitherhorizontalorvertical.proportions.theframe-and-panelisusedfor roompanelingandevencasework. 184) Reversible Door Bit (p.youcanusetheframe-and-panelin virtuallyanystyleoffurnitureorarchitecture. . 192) Sash Door (p. 186) Adjustable Door Bit (p.as showninthedrawingonthefacingpage.Frame-and-panel doorsfityear-roundbecausetheseasonal expansionandcontractiontakesplacewithin theframe. 199) Raised Curved Panel (p.Infact. 190) Arched Door with Cope-and-Stile Bits (p. 194) Arched Light Sash Door (p. 203) Sliding Dovetail Drawers (p. 205) ➤ ➤ ➤ ➤ ➤ ➤ rame-and-panel constructionis oneofthemostimportantdesign elementsinfurnituremaking. Frame-and-Panel Design Theframe-and-panellooksbestasalong rectangle.A frame-and-panelassemblycanspanabroad expansewhileaccommodatingseasonal dimensionalchanges. suchaswood. 188) Coped Mortise-andTenon (p. 197) Raised Panel (p.SECTION 8 Doors and Drawers Frame Joinery ➤ ➤ Panels ➤ ➤ Door Details ➤ Drawer Joinery ➤ Door Bit Set (p.
but bevelscanalsobecove-orogee-shaped.Therailstypicallyfitbetweenthestiles.Itshouldbethinenoughto slipeasilyintotheframegroove.whichis referredtoassticking.creatingraisedpanels.the panel’swidthshouldallowforcross-grain panelexpansionduringthehumidseason. Althoughtheprofilesareusuallycutwitha matchingsetofseparaterouterbits.The mostcommonprofileforabevelisflat.thickerpanelsareoften used. Bits for Doors and Panels Withtheselectionofrouterbitsavailable today. Althoughtheinsideedgesofadoorframe canbesquare. Astickingbitisusedtoshapethedecorative profilealongtheinsideedgesofthepanel frame.Ofcourse.ovolo.it’spossibletomakealltheshaping andjoinerycutsforapaneleddooronyour routertable.atthe bottomofeachstilegroove.itsimultaneouslycutsthepanelgroove. Theverticalframemembersarecalledstiles.Inthatcase.it’scalled cope-and-stickjoinerybecausethesticking profileonthestilesmatesagainstacomplementarycopecutontheendsoftherail.Thisisplentyofroom forevenlargecabinetdoorpanelstoexpand duringsummer.whichprovides 1⁄ 8in. to5⁄ 8in.they’reoftenshapedwitha simpledecorativeprofile—usuallyathumbnail. andhorizontalmembersarereferredtoas rails. Someraisedpanelsarebeveledonthe insidefaceofthedoor(exhibitingthelook ofaflatpanelontheexteriorface). Flat-paneldoorscanbemadeusingpanelsnothickerthanthepanelgrooveinthe frame.youcan insteaduseareversiblebitthatchangesprofilesbyinvertingsectionsofthecutter.althoughthey’regenerallythinnerthan theframe.spaceoverall.Thisprofile.butmost panelsarebeveledontheoutsideface.Iallowfor 1⁄16in. which allows for changes in seasonal humidity. Thethicknessoftheshapedpaneledge isimportant.thick.However.Cope-and-stickbitsmakeconstructionoftheframeflawlessandefficient.Theedgesofthickpanels arebeveledtofitwithinthegrooveintheir frame. Asaruleofthumb.Thecopebit cutsareverseprofileontheendsoftherails.Asitcutsthesticking.orogee.SECTION 8 FRAME-AND-PANEL CONFIGURATION Top rail Mullion Stile Panels Bottom rail The panel is free to float within the frame.canactuallybepart oftheframejoinery.butsnug enoughthatthepaneldoesn’trattleeach timethedoorisopened.andcommonlyrangefrom 1⁄ 2in. alongwithashorttenonthatfitswithinthe Doors and Drawers 181 .
youcanpurchasea“reversible”bit. place.Themost commonarethelarge.Ofcourseittakesmoretimetoset upareversiblebit.Instead.reversiblebitsarea goodoption.Don’t attemptthiswithasolidwoodpanel.Ifyou’reusingaplywoodpanel.Rearrangingthesectionsonthis bitallowsyoutocutthecopeandsticking inturn. Stile panelgroove. Whenshoppingforcope-and-stick doorbits.therearetwotypestoconsider: matchedsetsandreversiblebits.Asaneconomicalalternative.Thesebitscanquicklyproduce akitchenfullofdoors. Therearetwotypesofbitsforpanel raising:horizontalandvertical.youcanreinforcethecorners ofasolid-paneldoorframebyincorporating longtenons.asthe seasonalexpansionandcontractionwould A reversible bit will cut both the cope causethepaneltosplitifitweregluedin and the sticking. 182 Doors and Drawers .Most woodworkersusematchedsets.considerusingaplywoodorMDF panelandgluingitintotheframe.190.SECTION 8 Cope-and-stick bits greatly simplify door making.andthedesignislimited tosimplerprofilesthatareeasilyreversed.horizontaltwo-wing COPE-AND-STICK JOINERY Sticking Cope Rail Offset shoulders on rail. Tosubstantiallyincreasethestrengthof adoor. Butforthewoodworkerwhoonlyneedsto makeanoccasionaldoor.whilethecomplementarybitcutsthe stickingandpanelgroove. ➤ See“Coped Mortise-and-Tenon”onp. somebitsadjustfortheplywoodthickness (seethetopleftphotoonthefacingpage).inwhich onebitcutsthecopeandtenonsimultaneously.
you’ll need to construct a jig.Likecope-and-stick framebits. To safely shape narrow sash mullions.Thesecuttersaremyfirstchoice becausetheirlargediameteroffersmore effectivecuttinggeometrythanthatofverticalbits. cutters.asshowninthedrawingonp.Justbeawarethatthe smallerdiameteralsomeansalesseffective cuttinggeometry. you can create raised-panel doors on your router table.Andlikethe cope-and-stickbits.it’simportantto constructajigtodistanceyourhandsfrom thebit.Thesmalldiameterof thesebitsallowsyoutousethemeffectively insmallerrouters.verticalbits ! s WARNING Never attempt to use any of these door or panel bits in a handheld router.196.SECTION 8 The reversible sash bit cuts both the cope and the sticking.resultinginasmoothercut. Sashbitsallowyoutoconstructsash-type doorswithyourrouter.Whenshapingthenarrowbarsor mullionsonasashwindow.instead ofapanelgroove.resultinginalesscleanly cutsurface. They should only be run in a table-mounted router.The onlydrawbackofwing-typepanel-raising bitsisthatspinningthemsafelyrequiresa 3-hporlargerrouter. This unique cope-and-stick set adjusts to accommodate undersized plywood.thesebitscutarabbet forglass.However. Forthosewoodworkerswhohavenot yetpurchasedabigrouter. areagoodoption. Doors and Drawers 183 . With this bit.sashbitscutacopeon theendsofthestockandamatchingstickingprofileontheedges.sashbitsareavailableinatwopiecesetorasareversiblebit.
and make certain that the fence is positioned parallel to the miter gauge slot (E). The other bit cuts the sticking profile. Begin by installing the coping bit and adjusting A Adjust fence tangent to bearing. its height to create a small fillet at the top of the sticking profile (C). along with a short tenon that fits within the panel groove of the adjoining frame member.F R A M E J O I N E RY Door Bit Set Stile-and-rail bit sets have greatly simplified door construction (A). One bit cuts the cope. Reduce the fence opening as much as possible (F) and position Table First cut Cope bit Adjust fence tangent to bearing. Next. mitered appearance (B). which meshes with the cope cut to create a neat. position the fence tangent to the guide bearing on the bit (D). C Table B Second cut Sticking bit D BIR 39 184 Doors and Drawers .
Now make the cope cut on the ends of the rails (I).F R A M E J O I N E RY a guard over the opening (G). Next. To cut the sticking and groove. secure the sticking bit in the router and adjust the height to match the cope cut (J). position the fence tangent to the bearing (K). Use a push stick to distance your hands (L). fasten a backing board to the miter gauge (H). E F G H I J K L Doors and Drawers 185 . A featherboard can be used to hold the stock to the fence. To complete the setup.
the first step is to cut the cope on the ends of the rails. The final step of the setup is to attach a backing board to the miter gauge for additional stock support (G). remove the arbor nut. secure it in the router collet (I). When making the cut. C D To cut the sticking profile and groove.F R A M E J O I N E RY Reversible Door Bit If your woodworking budget is limited and/or you only need to make an occasional door. remember to use a push stick to distance your hands (L). Next. To safely remove the nut without damaging the bit. adjust the bit height to match the cope profile that you cut earlier (K). As you position the fence. secure a guard over the bit and position a featherboard to hold the stock against the fence. Now. Next. Next. After you mill the stock for the frame. First. you’ll first need to rearrange the parts of the bit on the arbor. Now. make certain that it is parallel to the miter-gauge slot (D). place the parts on a table to familiarize yourself with them (J). stack the parts on the arbor according to the manufacturer’s instructions and secure the assembly with the arbor nut. Now make the cope cut on the ends of the rails (H). position the fence tangent to the bearing on the bit (C). then you’ll probably want to consider using a reversible cope-and-stick bit (A). reduce the fence opening (E) and position a guard over the bit (F). for your personal safety. E 186 Doors and Drawers . Begin the setup process by adjusting the height A B of the bit so that a small “fillet” or step is created above the sticking profile (B). Next. Lock the fence in place tangent to the guide bearing.
F R A M E J O I N E RY F G H I J K L Doors and Drawers 187 .
be certain that it is parallel to the miter-gauge slot (F). Now cut the cope on the ends of the rails (J). To compensate for the undersize plywood that is so common today. Replace the arbor nut and adjust the bit height to create a small fillet. As you secure the fence to the table. As with any cope-and-stick bits. Now reduce the fence opening (G) and position a guard over the bit (H). adjust the bit to match the thickness of the plywood. secure the cope bit in the collet and loosen the arbor nut (B). Now position the fence tangent to the guide bearing (E). Next. Position the fence tangent to the guide bearing and cut the profile on all the frame members (L). at the top of the profile (D). stack the parts to achieve the required spacing. A B C D E F Before cutting the “sticking” along the edges of the stock. you’ll want to first cut the cope on the ends of the horizontal frame members or rails.F R A M E J O I N E RY Adjustable Door Bit When you’re making frame-and-panel doors. some bits are adjustable. Next. As you stack the parts. To complete the setup. fasten a backing board to the miter gauge (I). mount the bit in the collet and adjust the height to correspond to the cope cut (K). a good method for adding strength to the assembly is to use plywood for the panel and glue it into the frame groove. Begin by measuring the thickness of the plywood with a dial caliper (A). 188 Doors and Drawers . Following the manufacturer’s instructions. or step. remember that the cutters must face counterclockwise when viewed from the threaded end of the arbor (C). These bits feature stacking cutters and shims that allow you to finetune the groove to fit the plywood.
F R A M E J O I N E RY G H I J K L Doors and Drawers 189 .
This method is a unique way to create an authentic cope-and-stick joint with the strength and longevity of a traditional mortise-and-tenon. There are number of cope-and-stick router bit sets for efficiently producing doors. and a 3⁄ 8-in. Close the fence opening. The next step is to cope the shoulder of the tenon. Mount the finger-pull bit in the router table and adjust the B C bit height so that it just grazes the underside of the tenon (C). Although this bit was designed to cut a finger pull along the lower edge of a drawer front. the stubby tenon created by these sets lacks the strength and longevity of a true mortise-and-tenon joint. Because the bit is not between the fences.-radius “finger pull” bit to cope the shoulder (B). Position the fence so that the bit produces a quarter of a circle when the cope is cut. Here. it’s important to position 190 Doors and Drawers . I’m cutting a rabbet for glass or screen. lishment. it is ideally suited for coping the shoulder along a tenon.F R A M E J O I N E RY Stile Rail Coped Mortise-and-Tenon Mortise-and-tenon joints are commonly used to join rail-and-stile framework for doors (A). A much stronger method is to use a long tenon and cope the tenon shoulder with a bit that allows the tenon to pass unob- BIR 45 over the top of the bit. Begin by laying out and cutting the mortise-andtenon joints on the frame. Sometimes a simple molding profile is shaped along the inside edges of the frame as an embel- A Cut sticking with corner rounding bit. as the fence will be used to support the end of the tenon and correctly locate the cut. Cut cope with drawer finger pull bit. structed In this example. roundover bit to create the decorative sticking along the interior frame edges. While cope-and-stick bits make door construction fast and easy. but they create a short tenon rather than the long tenon associated with traditional work. but another option is to cut a groove for a panel. I’m using a 3⁄ 8-in.
adjust the height of the rabbeting bit to cut just below the sticking profile D (G). Now use the miter gauge to support the stock and cut the cope (D). which is equal to the size of the sticking bit. The rabbet forms a recess to accept glass or perhaps screen for a window or door. E F G H I Doors and Drawers 191 . The next step is to shape the sticking profile with the 3⁄ 8-in.F R A M E J O I N E RY a guard over the bit to provide a barrier for your hands. First.. roundover bit. It’s a good idea to make test cuts on sample stock to arrive at the final setup (F). The depth of the rabbet should be 3⁄ 8 in. Now cut the rabbet (H) and assemble the joint (I). The last step is to cut a rabbet along the inside edges of the framework. It’s critical to adjust the height of the bit so that the cut from the roundover bit intersects the cope cut to create the appearance of a miter (E).
then switch router bits and C D mill the sticking and groove while the template is still attached (E). Remember to shape the stiles and bottom rail as well. mill the frame parts. Because the stock is straight rather than curved. fasten a template to the rail and trim it flush with the router table (D). then you’re ready to shape the cope on the rail ends (B). using the same center point. shorten the compass setting and draw an arch to represent the top edge of the panel. The key is making an accurate.F R A M E J O I N E RY Arched Door with Cope-and-Stile Bits It may seem that making an arched door with a frame that matches the panel is complicated— but it’s really not. Then. use a compass to draw an arch to repre- A B sent the top rail. The next step is to set the bit height (A). Begin by drawing a rectangle to represent the outside dimensions of the door. Now bandsaw the arch in the top rail (C). E F 192 Doors and Drawers . use your drawing to determine the radius. Next. full-scale layout. When you’re satisfied with the drawing. Use a miter gauge for support. it makes sense to use the fence (F). Next.
Now you’re ready to shape the panel. shape the opposite end and then the edges (J). Next. drive the nails in the edges of the panel where they will be shaped away. turn your attention to the panel. Then bandsaw the arch and trim it flush with the template (G). First. When fastening the template.F R A M E J O I N E RY With the frame completed. Use a box fence for safety. mill the panel to size. G H I J K Doors and Drawers 193 . Remove the template and begin with the arch. The last steps are to sand the panel and assemble the door (K). Position the arch against the fence (H) and pivot it into the spinning bit (I).
you’ll need to disassemble it and rearrange the cutters for each sequence of cuts. the outer frame members are called rails and stiles. To use a reversible bit. The bit used in this photo-essay is reversible (B) Table Table and was used to rout both the cope and stick profiles. you can rip it to final width. individual panes are called mullions. This will make it easier to work. The intersections at A each corner are coped. When milling the stock. After First cut Cope setup Stock face up Table Table rearranging the parts on the arbor. you’ll want to arrange the cutters the Stock face down for that profile first. To make a sash door. which creates the appearance of a miter (A).F R A M E J O I N E RY Sash Door A sash is a traditional framework for glass panes. After coping. As with a paneled door. The narrow bars that divide the glass into smaller. Since it’s best to begin with Second cut Sticking setup cope cut. cut the material for the mullions oversized in width. first mount the bit in the router collet (C). adjust the bit First cut Cope setup Stock face up B Second cut Sticking setup Stock face down BIR 37 BIR 37 C 194 Doors and Drawers . To remove the arbor nut. it’s best to begin with a drawing that shows the overall size as well as the dimensions of the individual frame members.
Attach a backing board to the miter gauge (H).F R A M E J O I N E RY height (D).) D E F G H I Doors and Drawers 195 . (Text continues on p. Also remember to place a guard in position over the bit (I). check to see that the fence is parallel to the miter gauge slot (F). Next. position the fence tangent to the guide bearing on the bit (E). To provide optimum support for the workpiece. 196. Also. reduce the fence opening as much as possible (G). The backing board will support the stock close to the bit and prevent tearout on the trailing edge of the workpiece.
Use the jig shown to safely shape the narrow mullions (O. P). thinner than stock to be shaped. Next. J K L M 1/4-in. Brads O P 196 Doors and Drawers . plywood cap fastened with glue and brads N Make jig 1/64 in. position the coped profile next to the bit (L). refer to the drawings from the manufacturer and rearrange the bit for the sticking profile. they should face counterclockwise when viewed from the end (K). Stock is placed in notch. Remember. To find the correct height.F R A M E J O I N E RY Now cut the cope on the ends of the rails and mullions (J). Set the fence tangent to the bearing (M). Now use a push stick and make the cut on the rails and stiles (N). as you stack the cutters on the arbor.
182. it may be necessary to adjust the cutter height. Begin by accurately milling the stock. The key is accurate layout and machine setup. ➤ See“Sash Door”onp. When correctly positioned. Next. Make the stock for the bars wide enough for two. For this reason. Then cut the mortises with a hollow chisel according to the layout (C).F R A M E J O I N E RY Arched Light Sash Door Constructing a sash-type door with interlocking bars is another variation on the cope-and-stick construction shown on p. 198. The location of the mortise in relationship to the sticking is critical.) A B C D E F [ TIP ] Remember to check the cope for fit to the sticking. For greatest accuracy. Before bandsawing the curves. fence position. clamp matching pieces together and transfer the lines (A). shape the sticking on the stiles first (B). Then bandsaw the arches in the top rail (H) and smooth them with a spindle sander. (Text continues on p.194. this makes feeding the work through machines safer and more accurate. and then adjust the setup for the second shoulder (F). or both. G H Doors and Drawers 197 . Check the fit frequently and make any necessary adjustments. the mortise falls just on the edge of the sticking (D). Since the tenon shoulders are offset. cut the face of each tenon (E). cut the cope on the tenon shoulder (G). cut the tenons.
K L M N 198 Doors and Drawers . But first you’ll need to rip the narrow sash bars to final width. To assemble the framework. Gently tap the joints together with a mallet (M). To shape the sticking and to rabbet the arches. Finally. fit the sash bars into the rails first (L) and then the stiles. fill the first rabbet with a stick tacked into the jig (J). clamp the door and set it on a flat surface while the glue dries (N).F R A M E J O I N E RY The last two steps are to shape the sticking and the rabbet. it’s necessary to use a starting pin or block as a fulcrum when entering the cut (K). To shape the bars safely. I J Once all the cuts are made. take a few extra minutes to shape the jig shown on p. 196. When cutting the second rabbet. This jig will add much-needed mass to the otherwise narrow stock (I). fit each joint individually and check the fit.
But first a word of caution: Bits for shaping raised panels are very large and should only be used with a guard. you would need to do it by hand or purchase a shaper. and reduce the opening at the fence as much as possible (D). Insert the bit fully and then back it out 1⁄16 in. adjust the bit height to the depth of the finished profile (C). Begin by mounting the bit securely in the collet. A (B). Next. panel-raising bits are available for use with the router (A). Nowadays. 200. Additionally.PA N E L S Raised Panel If you wanted to create raised-door panels years ago. routers simply lack the power of shapers. Also.) B C D Doors and Drawers 199 . The final (Text continues on p. so you’ll need to make the cut in several passes to avoid stalling the router. never exceed the manufacturer’s recommended rpm.
Always begin with the end grain (G) and finish the process with the long grain (H). Next.PA N E L S position of the fence should be tangent with the guide bearing (E). lower the bit for the first pass. and position a guard such as the Bench Dog Panel-Loc over the bit (F). Now you’re ready to make the cut. E F G H 200 Doors and Drawers .
After shaping the curved ends. shape the edges with the same bit and a straight fence. Pushing the panel face against the fence wedges it between the fence and the stick. feed the panel slowly and keep it firmly against the fence (B). A B C Doors and Drawers 201 .PA N E L S Raised Curved Panel Raising a curved panel requires a vertical router bit and a curved fence to guide and support the workpiece (A). To maintain the correct angle while shaping. bandsaw a curve into wide stock for use as a fence. First. To make the cut. This prevents it from rocking or tilting as it passes the router bit. After cutting a small opening for the panel bit. feel the panel between the fence and a stick clamped to the table (C). attach the fence to the router table fence.
fillet next to the thumbnail profile. The top of the door has a decorative cutout. use a flush-trimming router bit and a template to remove the bandsaw marks (A). shape the rabbet that allows most of the door to fit within the opening. D E 202 Doors and Drawers . The bearing on the rabbeting bit can ride along the C thumbnail without damaging it. Set the height of the bit to create a 1⁄16-in. After the thumbnail. This fillet is important. Afterward. it creates another fine detail to capture light and create a shadow line. After bandsawing the top of the door. use a roundover bit to B shape the thumbnail profile around the perimeter of the door (C). just don’t press too hard (D). The example I’m using here is the pendulum door from the waist of a tall clock. carve the inside corners on the top of the door to complete the thumbnail profile (E). Next. Then carve the inside corners where the router bit didn’t reach (B). a lipped door looks refined. [ TIP ] A fence can be used to limit the rabbet’s depth along the straight portions of the door. That’s because most of the door’s thickness fits inside the cabinet and the remaining lip is shaped with A a delicate thumbnail profile.D O O R D E TA I L S Shaping a Lipped Door Edge Unlike an overlay door that closes against the cabinet face.
In fact. For this essay.) B C D E Doors and Drawers 203 . yet it has plenty of power for the task. Now set the cutting depth of the bit to the thickness of the lock (C). A (Text continues on p. Now use a chisel to square the corners of the mortise (E). As you rout the mortise. Next. Its compact size makes it easy to control.D O O R D E TA I L S Lock Mortise All doors require hardware—and the most efficient way to cut the recess for a hinge or lock is with a router. a laminate trimmer is the best choice. Begin by laying out and drilling the hole for the key (A). This traditional lock is a good example because it actually requires two mortises: A deep mortise for the lock mechanism and a shallow mortise for the thin brass backplate. lay out the pattern for the lock body and backplate (B). 204. I’m using a half-mortise lock. be careful not to exceed the layout lines (D).
Now square the corners and clean up the edges with a chisel to complete the job (H). First. taking care not to rout beyond the layout lines (G). F G H 204 Doors and Drawers . Now carefully rout the mortise. set the cutting depth to the backplate thickness (F).D O O R D E TA I L S The next step is to rout the shallow mortise for the backplate.
thick 5/8 Drawer side in. The resulting 3 out weakening the drawer front. but once it’s complete. from the fence to the center of the bit allows 1⁄ 2 in. Begin by mounting a 1⁄ 2-in. dovetail sockets are first cut into the back surface of the drawer front and then mating dovetails are cut on the ends of the drawer sides. of space to accommodate a typical commercial drawer runner. yet hidden from view. When using thicker or thinner drawer front stock. adjust the socket depth to suit. adjusting the bit height to 3 Groove for drawer bottom 3/4 Dado for drawer back Drawer back Drawer front in. All that remains is to rout dadoes to accept the back. Remember that the length of the drawer front is critical. which is approximately one-half the thick⁄ 8-in. thick Drawer bottom groove A Dovetail socket 1/4-in. To make the drawer.) D E Doors and Drawers 205 . resulting in sturdy. then the stopped sliding dovetail is a great choice (A).-dia.. the sliding dovetail is strong. The joint is strong and can be quickly and easily cut on the router table. attractive drawers that will stand up to the rigors of hard use. Careful measurements are critical if the drawer slides are to work smoothly. dovetail bit into your table router. and grooves to accept the drawer bottom. Setup takes a few minutes. Close the fence opening completely (D) and then position the fence the correct distance from the center of the bit (E). 206. Best of all. you can rout an entire set of drawers for a shop or kitchen in short order (B). plus 1⁄4 in. plus 1⁄ 2 of the bit diameter. B C (F) a distance of 11⁄16 in. plywood bottom Sliding dovetail ⁄ 8 in. of overlay on the cabinet face.-deep socket will create a strong joint with- BIR 46 ness of a typical drawer front (C).D R AW E R J O I N E RY Sliding Dovetail Drawers If you’d like to make a kitchen full of drawers but don’t want to take the time to cut rows of dovetails. As seen in the drawing. because the position of the socket (Text continues on p.
Because you’re making a stopped groove. Front 3/4 in. in. The socket begins at the bottom edge of the in. it’s necessary to position the fence parallel to the miter-gauge slot (G). To cut the right-hand socket. thick F in. Clamp the stock to the miter gauge and feed it in the usual manner. from right to left (J). 3/4 5/ 8 drawer front and stops an inch from the top. G fence.D R AW E R J O I N E RY Groove stops 1 in. To prevent the bit from pushing the stock away from the fence and spoiling the cut. Begin by routing the left-hand socket. Because a miter gauge is used to feed the workpiece. Stop feeding when the layout marks on the fence and the workpiece align (K). it’s necessary to mark the stopping points on the in. it’s important to clamp the BIR 47 H I stock securely to the miter gauge (L). Use a block of wood to mark the fence to indicate the diameter of the bit (H) and then mark the stopping point of the socket on the stock (I). 3/8 Dovetail Side 5/8 in. J K L M N O 206 Doors and Drawers . 3/4 is registered from the end of the drawer front. you’ll need to feed the stock from left to right. below top edge. thick Dovetail groove 11/6 in.
A push block will make it easy to maintain contact with the fence while keeping your hands positioned a safe distance from the bit (S). Two passes.-thick plywood for the drawer bottom and slide it into place (W). mount a 1⁄4-in. from the bit. will complete the tail. To assemble the drawer. remembering to orient the parts as necessary to create a left-hand and a right-hand drawer side (Q). use the fence to position the cut. P Q R S T U V W Doors and Drawers 207 . To rout the dadoes for the drawer back. Finish up by rounding the corner of each tail to correspond to the rounded end of the socket (O). one on each face. don’t rout beyond the dovetail sockets (R). When making the groove in the drawer front. Test the setup with a sample board before routing the actual workpieces.-dia. Next. After making the back.D R AW E R J O I N E RY The same dovetail is now used to cut the tail. the smaller the tail will be and vice versa. stand the stock on end and feed it past the bit (N). A couple of small nails through each side will reinforce the joint (V). and position the fence 1⁄4 in. Next. measure between the drawer sides at the drawer front and add twice the depth of the drawer back dado to determine the length of the drawer back. The next step is to rout the groove for the drawer bottom. apply glue to the rear joint and slide the back into place (U). First. apply glue and slide the parts together (T). The last step is to cut a piece of 1⁄4-in. straight bit in the router. The deeper the cut. Then rout the grooves (P). position the bit within the fence opening (M). Close down the fence opening.
page 222 . page 210 Special Shaping Operations.Routing with Templates.
and the router lends itself perfectly to this particular task. they’ll all be identical. template-routing involves attach- . In this part. The technique is often used to clean up bandsaw marks after you rough-saw curved pieces like table legs. As you’ll see in this part of the book.PART fouR Special Shaping ing a template to the workpiece in order to guide either a bearing on the router bit or a sleeve-shaped bushing that’s mounted to the router base. which are both decorative processes that can add a very distinctive touch to your furniture. And it can even be employed to cut a profile completely across the edge of a tabletop or other projecting surface. I’ll also address fluting and dishing operations. When pieces are cut out using a template and a guide. whether you’re making two pieces or twenty. T here’s no faster method for making multiple workpieces than using a template.
With this method. one of the most efficient and productive woodworking techniques is routing with a template. the profile can be shaped with 210 . Curves and arcs are easily shaped with a template. For practical purposes. 219) Scalloped Top on the Router (p. 215) Flush-Trimming Tight Curves in Small Stock (p. Template routing allows you to produce identical pieces. a template and straight bit are used to smooth away the saw marks. Afterwards. a template is fastened to the workpiece to provide a guide for a bearing or bushing to follow as the bit shapes the profile.SecTiOn 9 Routing with Templates Using a Bearing ➤ ➤ Using a Bushing ➤ Internal Cut (p. whether two or twenty. and arcs (an arc being a segment of a circle). freeform or S curves. W curves with Templates Curves—such as the arched moldings used in doors. as shown in the drawing on the facing page. and many case pieces—add beauty and visual interest to furniture. 218) Corner Shelf (p. clocks. 214) Curve with Template (p. and eliminates the tedium of smoothing bandsaw marks with a sander or file. 221) ➤ ➤ ➤ ithout a doubt. They capture the imagination and draw you in for a closer look. After the curve is bandsawn slightly oversized. ellipses. curves can be divided by type—circles. as shown in the top photo on the facing page. It’s a particularly good method to use when you need to shape away the entire edge of a curved workpiece (see the bottom drawing on the facing page). 217) Internal Rabbet with Template (p.
In this case.SecTiOn 9 HOW A TeMPLATe WORKS Template Bearing follows curve of template. which contacts the overhead pin in order to guide the workpiece past the bit. but I prefer to carve the corners by hand after routing. An unfortunate drawback to template routing is that you cannot completely shape a sharp inside corner due to the rounded cut that a spinning bit creates. a template can be used as a guide for the bit bearing. ➤ See “Curve with Template” on p. Among other things. arcs. the second option takes a few more minutes. 212. Circles. Routing with Templates 211 . An S-curve molding—usually referred to as a gooseneck—can be among the most difficult moldings to shape. templates allow you to shape freeform curves. Sure. the workpiece is fastened to the template. or if the entire edge is to be shaped. a template is needed for shaping this profile on a curved surface. but it will separate your work from the rest. the workpiece as a guide. and ellipses are easily shaped with templates. One solution is to eliminate sharp inside corners from the design. as shown in the top photo on p. 215. Stock Router table SHAPinG An enTiRe eDGe Because the entire edge is removed. Routing a gooseneck molding requires an S-shaped template and an overarm pin guide for your router table.
If there is too much. 212 Routing with Templates . Securing the Workpiece There are three common methods for securing a workpiece to a template: using toggle clamps. but I prefer to use 1⁄4-in. You can smooth bandsawn curves carefully with a spindle sander or a file. which is much more stable than solid wood. As a template material. the bit can splinter or tear out the wood. However. I never use tape when making heavy cuts with large bits. Templates can be made from any smooth. or so of material outside the cutline. and not the inexpensive paper or foam carpet tape. and the grip is surprisingly strong. or double-sided tape. smooth template edges. as shown in the photo on p. There should be just a little material left to rout away cleanly. I use cabinet-grade plywood because it is free of the voids that can snag a guide bearing and spoil the work.-thick cabinet-grade plywood is ideal. they will obstruct the cut. Any bumps or irregularities in the template will be transferred to the workpiece. Although fasteners will obviously leave ugly holes in the work.SecTiOn 9 The rounded inside corner (right) created by a router bit can be hand-carved after routing to produce a distinctive square detail (left). 1⁄4-in. I caution you to use only cloth woodturner’s tape. Work to be routed with a template should be sawn slightly oversized. if the workpiece is to be shaped around the entire perimeter. Plywood is also easy to work with tools typically at hand. they can often be positioned so that the hole won’t be seen in the finished work. fasteners. 128.thick plywood. Another good option for securing a workpiece to a template is double-sided tape. For the smoothest possible surface. Fasteners. especially when routing a curve. Also. Preparing the Template and Workpiece A router will faithfully duplicate a template profile for better or worse. However. such as nails and screws. Tape doesn’t leave an unsightly hole. stable material. Toggle clamps are a good option when the work is only routed along one or two edges. so it’s essential to create clean. Toggle clamps are used along with the template to make a jig. Always remember to position a fastener well out of the path of the router bit. hold the workpiece firmly to the template and are quick to install and remove. Stop blocks are located on the jig to position the workpiece and counteract the forces of the spinning router bit. I leave only 1⁄ 32 in.
SecTiOn 9 Guiding the Bit There are three methods for guiding the bit: using a guide bearing on the bit itself. there are bits available with a top bearing. which is slipped over the bit shank and held in position with a small stop collar. as you do when using the router base or a bushing. a bushing (also called a template guide). and then keep the same area of the bushing against the template to compensate for the fact that the bushing isn’t concentric with the bit. To determine the correct amount to offset the template. and it just isn’t practical to position the template below the workpiece. it’s important to realize that the base is probably not concentric with the bit. the solution is to use a bushing. The solution is to make a mark on the base of the router and always keep the mark adjacent to the template. When routing with this method. Using the baseplate as a guide is pretty simple. As when using the base as a guide. The most common method for guiding the cut when routing with a template is to use the guide bearing on the bit. Bushings are available in various lengths and diameters to suit the template and the router bit. Just subtract the bit diameter from the router base diameter and divide the result by two. However. But how about when the template is placed between the router base and the workpiece? Today. because you don’t have to calculate an offset. When the diameter of the router base is too large to follow the curve of the template. there are times when the desired router bit isn’t available with a top bearing. the cut will not be accurate. which isn’t true with guide bushings or router bases. Simply make the template the size of the desired workpiece. simply subtract the diameter of the bit from the outside diameter of the bushing. but you’ll first have to calculate the offset distance before making the template. The precision that is built into a router bit and its guide bearing ensures much more accurate results than you’ll achieve with the other two methods. you can use a bushing that is fastened to the center opening of the baseplate. you’ll have to calculate the offset between the bit and the bushing in order to make an accurately sized template. more than ever before. It’s also an advantage that a bearing is always concentric with the bit. This method is also the most straightforward. then divide the remainder by two. Alternatively. vertently rotate the router during the process. you’ll need to first calculate the offset between the bit and the bushing (see the sidebar above). One option is to use the router baseplate to guide the bit. if you inad- ➤ cALcULATiinG BUSHinG OffSeT When using a template guide. A bushing is a metal sleeve that mounts to the opening in the router base. and the router base. or bushing. So. Routing with Templates 213 .
or coping saw. drilling a hole. the workpiece will be fed clockwise around the bit (e). cloth woodturner’s tape could be used instead. which is without a doubt the fastest method for smoothing away the saw marks. Remember that for an internal cut. B c D e 214 Routing with Templates . of material to be removed by a template-guided A router. push the stock along the bit. However. staying approximately 1⁄32 in. for this example. To make the cut. you can use nails if the nail holes will not be visible on the inside of the completed piece. As discussed previously. feeding it against the bit rotation. As shown here. Next. the workpiece is the side of a tall case clock hood. and then cutting away most of the interior using a scrollsaw. saw along the layout lines. Adjust the height of the flush-trim router bit so that the bearing contacts the template with the cutter set to engage the entire workpiece edge (D). inside the line (B). leave about 1⁄32 in.USinG A BeARinG internal cut Internal cuts involve laying out the opening. Then attach the template to the workpiece (c). Begin by using the template to lay out the opening (A). jigsaw.
but it’s worth the extra effort for the detail it adds. This will ensure smooth entry into the cut (D). Next. which has no bearing. Therefore. When making the template.) A B c e D f Routing with Templates 215 . The first molding cut here is made with a core box bit. proud of the line (c). The jig is simply a stick (Text continues on p. Begin by sketching the curve onto the template stock and sawing it to shape. once the curve is smooth. you’re ready to add the molding profiles. Bandsaw the curve approximately 1⁄32 in. feed the workpiece against the rotation of the bit (e). In this example. include an extra inch or so at each end so that the bit bearing will have contact with the template before and after the cut. I’ll show you how to make a curved piece with smooth edges and then how to rout a profile on the edge (A). attach the template to the stock and then begin the cut with the bearing contacting the overhanging end of the template.USinG A BeARinG curve with Template Making curves in furniture is always a challenge. 216. use the template to trace the curve onto the stock (B). you’ll need to use a simple jig to guide the template (f). To smooth away the saw marks.
The profile is small enough to take the cut in G H one pass (K). The next bit used for this molding is a roundover (J). After setting the bit height for a light cut. begin by routing at the end (H). i J K L 216 Routing with Templates .USinG A BeARinG with a rounded end that overhangs the bit (G). As always. remember to feed the stock against the bit rotation (L). feed the stock from right to left with the workpiece between you and the cutter (i). As you rout. follow up with a series of successively deeper cuts until the full depth of the profile is reached.
The stock is small. Make the first cut (D). Secure the work in the jig (c). and the cut is somewhat heavy because of the stock thickness. a drawer front from a desk.USinG A BeARinG flush-Trimming Tight curves in Small Stock The small workpiece in this example. Begin by bandsawing the stock just outside the layout line (B). presents unique problems. the bearing follows the surface created by the first cut instead of the template. A [ TiP ] Use a spiral bit. Blocks on the face of the jig counteract the clamp force and help prevent tearout as the bit exits the work. use a jig (A) that positions the toggle clamps in the back. the entry and exit portions of the cut are on end grain. To overcome the problem of the small stock size. B c D e Routing with Templates 217 . Also. it cuts much cleaner than an ordinary straight bit and with minimal tearout. tearout can occur on the drawer face. and then raise the bit for the second cut (e). As the bit exits the cut. which is tough and doesn’t cut easily. During the second cut. away from the cut.
remember that it must allow for the offset between the bushing and the bit. which is clockwise inside the opening (D).USinG A BUSHinG internal Rabbet with Template When routing a rabbet on the router table. B c D 218 Routing with Templates . The rabbet shown here houses a A small pane of glass inside a clock hood window. Position the bit in the opening and feed the router toward the perimeter until the bushing contacts the template (c). When sizing the template. The first step is to attach a rectangular template to the workpiece (A). Attach the bushing to the router base and adjust the cutting depth of the bit (B). but that method does not work with an internal cut. Now push the router along the template against the bit rotation. Now you’re ready for the cut. This internal rabbet is a perfect example of a case in which you’ll need to use a template and guide bushing. you can usually guide the stock against the fence.
apply pressure with a clamp or a mallet to ensure good adhesion (e). Next. and toggle clamps would obstruct the path of the router. Make a template the same size as the shelf. In this photo-essay I’ll show how to rout a corner cabinet shelf to size. minus the amount of bushing offset. fasten the template to the workpiece. because the technique can effectively produce multiple identical shelves. The technique has broad applications. A B c D (Text continues on p. When using tape. mount the bushing in the base of the router (B). because nails or screws would leave holes in the finished piece. it’s best to first remove as much excess stock as possible.USinG A BUSHinG corner Shelf one of the most efficient methods for routing multiple workpieces is to use a template and a guide bushing. which include routing identically shaped cabinet shelves.) e Routing with Templates 219 . saw away the excess stock. using the template as a guide. The unusual shape of a corner cabinet shelf makes it a great candidate for template routing using a bushing. or routing shallow mortises in a stair stringer to accept the ends of the treads. 220. trace around the workpiece using a spacer stick between the pencil and workpiece to account for the bushing offset (c). double-sided woodturner’s tape is the best approach (D). In order to minimize the strain on both the bit and the router. After selecting a straight bit and bushing (A). In this case.
The bushing will duplicate the template exactly (G).USinG A BUSHinG To make the cut. so make sure that the template is precise and free of voids or irregularities. guide the router along the edge of the template in a counterclockwise direction (f). for safety. Another option is to use the router table. position the fence adjacent to the bit and use a guard (i). f G H i 220 Routing with Templates . if the top accepts a bushing (H).
When only part of the edge is shaped. However. attach the template to the underside of the top with screws (c). move it counterclockwise around the top’s perimeter. When hand feeding a router. you may opt to use a portable jigsaw (B). the rub bearing on the bit must follow a curve to guide the bit and limit the cutting depth. Now saw the outline slightly proud of the line. Next. To have complete control of routers and shapers. If the top is large and your bandsaw is limited in size. clamp the work to the bench to keep it stationary while sawing. trace it onto the workpiece. set the bit height with an offcut from the top (D). A c B D e Routing with Templates 221 . it’s important always to feed in the opposite direction of the cutter rotation (e). After making the template. Because the entire edge is removed.USinG A BUSHinG Scalloped Top on the Router Anytime you shape a curved surface with a router. which will provide extra stock to be removed by the router bit. The screw holes will later be hidden. Now you’re ready to make the cut. Before shaping. the portion that remains can serve to guide the bearing. a template is needed for shaping this profile on a curved surface. when the entire edge is shaped. a template is needed to guide the cut (A). If so. but make certain that the screw doesn’t penetrate the full thickness of the top.
225) Routing a Dished Tabletop (p. 228) ➤ ➤ number ofroutingoperationscan addtremendousdetailtoyourwork withjustasmallamountofeffort.heavy-dutylathe.S E C T I O N 10 Special Shaping Operations Fluting ➤ Dishing ➤ Large Pilaster Fluted with a Handheld Router (p. 223) Small Stock Fluted on the Router Table (p. Anotherdistinctivefurnituretreatment isadishedtabletop. youcanuseyourrouteralongwithaspecializedshopmadejigtoroutanddishatabletopinafractionofthetime.However.rangingfromfinefurnitureto kitchencabinets.Today. buttheprocesscantakeseveralhoursand requiresalarge.theinteriorisdishedand themoldingprofilesshaped. Flutingisagoodexample. ➤ See“Routing a Dished Tabletop”onp. woodworkerscanusethissimpledetailto addanarchitecturalelementtoanynumber ofprojects. 224) Fluted Quarter Columns (p. 222 .228.Thisdishingandthe A resultingraised-edgemoldingcanbeperformedontheoutboardendofalathe. Afteryoutruetheperimeterofthetop withastraightbit.Thenarrow groovesusedonthesurfaceofpilastersand columnstracetheirrootsbacktothetimes oftheancientRomansandGreeks.
In situations such as this. you’ll need a guide accessory. mill the stock for the pilasters. adjust the cutting depth of the bit (B). C D E F Special Shaping Operations 223 . After attaching the guide. Or you can make a guide.FluTINg large Pilaster Fluted with a Handheld Router Fluting lengthy stock. clamp a stop block at each end to keep the flutes uniform in length. position the router base against the stop block (F). Before you begin. If you mill it oversize in length. After layout. Each time you start a new flute. it’s much easier to pass the router over the stock. cut two flutes with each new setting A B (E). as I did here (A). such as this pilaster for a corner cabinet. can be awkward when the stock is passed across the short top of a router table. Afterward. you’ll have an area on which to lay out the flutes and check each router setting (C). Begin by routing the center flutes and work outward (D). Next. which attaches to the base of your router.
Also. set stops at each fence to control the length of the flutes and keep them consistent. Next. torn surface.FluTINg Small Stock Fluted on the Router Table A router table will dramatically increase the versatility of your router. Position the workpiece against the infeed stop and lower it onto the spinning bit (B). For each side of the center flute. move the fence closer to the bit (D). because it’s used to set up the router. which makes it difficult to keep the router steady if it’s handheld. Feed the stock slowly to avoid a fuzzy. C D 224 Special Shaping Operations . For each successive cut. Here’s a good example. You’ll want to be accurate A with the spacing. Now you’re ready for shaping. mark the position of the end of the flute (A). This small fluted plinth is narrow. each fence setting will make two flutes. simply turn the stock end for end. Finally. Then push the stock to the next stop (C). small- B diameter bits have a relatively slow rim speed even at higher rotations per minute (rpms). set the cutting depth of the bit and position the fence to cut the center flute. Begin with layout.
because the heavy paper in the joints allows the pieces to separate. before you begin. you must glue the four sections together to create a full column. the number of flutes must divide equally into the number of divisions on the index head of your lathe. Starting with the ends. After milling. Typically fluted. However. which yields a quarter column that’s 7 1 in. align the joints with pressure from opposing clamps (B). If you mill it slightly oversize. Begin by drawing a cross-section of the column full-scale (A). quarter columns provide a formal architectural look and additional detail. you must glue four strips of wood together with heavy paper in the glue joints.FluTINg Fluted Quarter Columns Quarter columns. the column is easily split into four segments. chests. Next. After aligning the ends. across when viewed from the front of the case. More specifically. The next step is to mill the stock for the columns. spacing is determined by the index head on your lathe. You can check the alignment by examining the joint at the end of the assembly (C). quarter columns require a base and capital to complete them visually. Once complete. allow the glue to dry overnight before turning. Columns typically have a 13⁄4 in. clamp the remainder of the work. To create quarter columns. draw the flutes in place. the four seams must align perfectly. A C Special Shaping Operations 225 . you’ll easily be able to turn the column to the required diameter. After turning and fluting. are one-quarter of a full circle. diameter. The size and spacing of the flutes must look proportional to the column. as the name implies. the columns are inset within the front corners of casework such as desks. Column Case B Base ⁄ 8 in. Otherwise the separate columns will not be exactly a quarter circle. remember that joint alignment is critical. and clocks. Like full-round columns and pilasters. For safety reasons.
Once again. turn the blank round with a roughing gouge (E). Afterward. F g H H 226 Special Shaping Operations . As you lever the tool into the spinning stock with one hand. Turning a straight. uniform surface (H). Support the plane on the tool rest and push it slowly down the length of the slowly spinning stock (g). uniform cylinder isn’t difficult if you follow a few easy steps. This is a great technique! The plane cleanly shears away the high spots to create a perfectly smooth. smooth the cylinder with a block plane. You can accomplish this by cutting to the diameter at D E several locations with a parting tool. Then mark the centers for mounting in the lathe.FluTINg The next step is to turn the square to a uniform cylinder. mount the blank securely in the lathe for turning. alignment is critical. Mark the exact location with the point of an awl (D). Afterward. gauge the diameter with spring calipers in the other hand (F). Then turn the remaining portion of the cylinder to diameter with the roughing gouge. Then carefully turn it to the required diameter. Begin by squaring the ends of the turning blank. First.
then make a very short test cut on one end of the cylinder. Now tighten the handwheel at the tailstock and make a second test cut. the first and last flute on each quarter column should be adjacent to a glue joint. I J K l M Special Shaping Operations 227 .FluTINg The next step is to rout the flutes. mount the box under the workpiece and. Next. remove the column from the lathe and carefully split it into corners by placing a wide chisel at one end and tapping it gently (M). Finally. release the pressure slightly at the tailstock and rotate the column to bring the router bit into alignment. if necessary. tack a wood block to the jig to act as a stop. If you choose to stop the flutes. set the cutting depth of the bit and lock it in position. successive flutes will be correctly positioned in relation to the glue joints. Once the setup is complete. If not. remember that the flutes must be spaced equally around each quarter column. When fluting is complete. fine. For this spacing to occur. Once the column is aligned for the first flute. route the flutes (l). If the flute falls next to the glue joint. Lock the cylinder in place with the pin on the index head (K). But first you’ll need to build a jig (I). attach a square base to your router to fit within the sides of the box (J). Before you begin routing. it may be necessary to reposition the cylinder between the centers. The jig is actually a box that mounts to the bed of the lathe to support the router during the fluting process.
E ! s WARNINg A dust collector is a must. Next. it’s necessary to true the edge of the top. mount the top in the jig (D). Instead. but if you must use two boards. Use corebox bit for cove. slide it along the rails until it touches the top. and the effect is dramatic as it reflects light and casts shadows. Top [ TIP ] A one-board top looks best. start the B C D router. Before shaping the molding. A dished tabletop has a molded rim that sits slightly above the rest of the table surface (A). Routing a Dished Tabletop Use spiral straight bit for dishing. Always rotate the top clockwise against the bit rotation (F). If you sandwich a layer of heavy paper between the top and the hub. clamp the router in position. take care when matching the grain and color.DISHINg Use roundover bit for both sides of bead. and rotate the top. Otherwise this process produces a choking cloud of fine dust and chips. To use the technique you’ll first have to build a jig. bandsaw the top perimeter and glue the hub to the center (C). The design is a classic one. which rotates on a hub. Never attempt to start the router when the bit is in contact with the stock. After the glue has dried. F 228 Special Shaping Operations . The molding is small and refined. 5/8 in. Once the bit is mounted. A Round lower edge with rasp. A spiral straight bit cuts cleaner and with less chatter than an ordinary straight bit (E). The router is suspended over the top. nique for producing it is relatively new. but the router tech7/8 in. it is much easier to remove the hub after the process is complete. Begin by milling the stock for the top. Now draw the radius of the top (B). you’re ready to begin.
smooth the edge with a file. it’s easy to remove the bearing and grind away the bearing stud. If you have a helper. clamp it in position. Work the surface from the fillet at the bead to the layout line. This step also gives the top a thin. Shaping the molding is much the same as truing the perimeter: Start the router. To adjust the bit depth. Now secure the top in the vise and rasp the edge (l). begin from the outside edge and work inward (I). Use care to avoid scarring the molding. a scraper. After you smooth the top. and then sandpaper. which is shaped with a bullnose bit. one of you can hold the router while the other rotates the top. the edge will need shaping along the underside to remove the square corner. To ensure that the molding isn’t squeezed. refined appearance. When you’re satisfied. but first draw a line with a compass for use as a guide. switch to the roundover bit to create the bead. use a block of plywood from the jig (g). Clamp the top to the bench and scrape the surface smooth (K). because there is no careful positioning of the router as there was with the molding. switch back to the straight bit to dish the top (J). This process goes quickly. A rasp works well for this process. inside edge of bead. and cove. If you’re not able to find a bit without a bearing. and rotate the top (H). you’re ready for the handwork. which sidesteps the process of clamping the router for each cut. The molding is shaped in three steps: outside edge of bead.DISHINg Next. g H I J K l Special Shaping Operations 229 . Once the molding is complete. With the router work completed.
133–34.41–42.37.35–36 guardsfor.211 startingpinsfor.80.30.27–28 rabbet.8–10.42–43 carving.80–81.81.119–20 Bullnoseprofile.85 feedrate.31–32 Columns.108 Beads.38–39 specialty.108 Collets.80–81 raisedcurvedpanels.30–31.78–100 enteringthework.210–11.181–93 adjustable.22–24 guidingcutswith.134 edge-forming.29 Appliedmolding.15–17.126.218 Cuttingdepth.90.33–44 V-groove.56–57 square.219–20 Cornice.148 rail-and-stile.23–24 Beadingbits.28 typesof.62.102 Coveprofile.116–17 Crownmoldingbitset.136.182.36 slot-cutting.109 Chamferbits.58–59 complexprofile.53–54.45.102 Arcs.36 crownmoldingset.104 Archeddoors.123.36–184.108.40.206 Clearbaseplates.183–85 raised-panel.142–43 Carbide-tippedbits.181–82 Copedmortise-and-tenonjoints.113 Beveledcurvededges.134 Bits.44–220.127.116.11–47 panel-raising.40–41.50–51 storageof.65.56 230 .79 Benchtoproutertables.33.29–30.133 triple-flute.105 dovetail.27–51 anti-kickback.46 straight.18.104.22.168 Adaptersleeves.190–91 Coreboxbits.84 feeddirection.47 shear-angleof.71 Beveledbits.172 Biscuitjoints.136.41 chamfer.124–25 flutesof.201 pattern.41 single-flute.34.62.34–35 flush-trim.22.214.171.124 beading.88.124.30–31.125.28–29 shearflush-trim.9 Carvingbits.139.180–93 corebox.150–52 guidebearingsfor.L.fluted.33.31–32 sharpening.5.19 custom.84 straight-sided.213 interior.138 Complexprofilebits.41.215–16 Custombaseplates.201 S-.183 setsof.79.104 Changingbits.135.85 freehand.133–36 keyhole.39–126.96.36.199.124 sign-making.128.63–64.35–36 wingcutter.38 pilotsfor.173–77 Boxjointbits.44.17 Akedajig.89 common.42–43 Carter.46.40.84 Cockbeads.R.28.13.18–20.183 forsashdoors.48 Clamps.217 stacking.37.188–89 forarcheddoors.176–77 Brads.36.116–18 Compressionspiralbits.123.225–27 Combinationdovetailjoints.83–85.134 See alsoGuidebearings.194–98 Cope-and-stickjoinery.36.82–83.31.101–103.28–30 C Cabinetpanelgrooves.41–42.163 gooving.41–42 shankof.105 Curves bevelededges.113 boxjoint.108 Baseplates clear.44–45.213 insertringsfor.Guidebushings Box(finger)joints.81.103.architectural.213.45.103 gluejoint.41 Cast-ironroutertabletop.210–11 Astragalprofile.122 templatesfor.18.126 Built-upmolding.56–57 routertable.110 Bearings.108 beveled.30–31.95.36 Cornershelves.34 cope-and-stick..178 large.18–20.Index A Acrylicbaseplates.28.66 high-speedsteel.44 changing.182–83 replaceablecarbideinsertsfor.186–87 safetyfor.45.107–108 Crownmolding.42–43 sash.33 qualityof.42–43 spiral.12 B Backboardbead.84.48.19 Climb-cutting.44.22–24 Cuts baseplate-guided.121–22 Architecturalcornice.181–93 Copebits.222.197–98 Archedmolding.176–77 carbide-tipped.33 joinery.192–93.108.36 Cope-and-stickbits.34 Complexprofiles.113 flush-trimming.83 maintenanceof.161–62 Anti-kickbackbits.101–103.SeeGuidebearings Benchdogs.39.44 Chamferprofile.35.217 guidebearingsfor.33.164.28 skewedstraight.84.113 Bird’s-mouthjoints.192–93 reversible.45–46. 213 guidebushingsfor.
129 guidebushingsfor.83 fortabletopedges.158–62 forjoinery.218 G Gluejoint.202 rail-and-stile.106–107.123.136–39 mortising.60–61.88–90 forjoinery.93.205–7 Index 231 .113 entireedge.81 E Easedprofile.139.180–204 arched.83.36.88 handheldroutingfor.126.133–36 cope-and-stick.150–62 combination.12 Dishedtabletops.180–204 drawer.139.158–62 sliding.165–66 Joinery.205–7 templatesfor.173–77 Fixed-baserouters.136–39 formoldingsandedges.138.flush-trimming.65.109–13 J Jigs dovetail.217 faceframes.228 Electronicvariablespeed(EVS)motors.139 Depthadjustments.180–93 lippededge.40.123.14 Insertplates.139 fortenons.20.33 changing.81 handheldroutingfor.183–85.64.142–43 square-sided.80 rabbet.36 Drawers edgeshapingfor.123.70 Fingerjoints.205–7 Drop-leaftables.80–82.228–29 Doorbits.90 foredgeshaping.136–38.180–93 Freehandrouting.223 freehand.31.85 Feedrate.83–84.86–87 shopmade.49 cuttingwith.181 Flush-trimbits.83–85.218 templatesfor.213 cuttingwith.36–37.212 Featherboards.104 lipped.106 safetyfor. 194–98 raised-panel.101–103 maintenanceof.99 t-square-type.36–37 two-pass.225–27 pilasters.122 beadsfor.163 Gooseneckmolding.6–11.82–83.138.63–64.94 End-grain.134.84 formolding.65.123–29 curves.68 “L”.126.46.88 offsetfor.217 Flutes.66 Guidebearings.88 forinternalcuts.83 High-speedsteelbits.158.30–31 High-speedsteel(HSS)bits.109–13 zero-clearance.158.125–26 Hearingprotection.194–98 Double-sidedwoodturner’stape.179 Dust-collectionsystems.20 Insertrings.37.38 forroutertables.83–84.30.138–39.181.134 Guards.183.110 curves.102 slidingdovetail.153–55 forsmallstock.188.8.131.52 Dovetailjoints.12 Depthstop.182–83.38 stopped.222–27 columns.42.211 Goovingbits.25 Edgeshaping.213 H Half-blinddovetailjoints freehand.124–25 Flush-trimming.33 I Inductionmotors.80–81.128.134 jigsfor.101–13 archedmolding.35–36 Grain cuttingwith.65.222–27 Frame-and-paneldoors.83–84.222.213 Guidebushings forbaseplates.199–201 sash.197–98 dividedlight.192–93.83–85.138.144 wingcutterbitsfor.60.181–93 door.8–10.81–82 plungecutwith.134.104 Edge-formingbits. 161–62 hand-cut.190–91.85 Eyeprotection.211 guidebearingsfor.28–30 Fluting.42 flat-panel.138 freehandrouting.39–40.SeeCope-and-stickbits.153–55.29 templatesfor.narrow.213 top.136–38.156–57.47 onpatternbits.83 F Faceframes.80–84 forflutedpilasters.102.123.128–29.69 routertable.135.131–79 bitsfor.150–52 guidedcuts.161–62 Handheldrouting.150–52 half-blind.127 spiralbitsfor.213.127 Fasteners.13 Flat-paneldoors.63.62 fortemplates.139 shopmade.D Dadoes.150–52 Furnitureprofiles.153–55.Stileand-railbits Doors.140–46 panel.126.139 through. 212 Dovetailbits.107 Grooves.56–57 Interiorcuts flush-trimming.202 routertablefor.34–35 Edgeguides forhandheldrouting.159–60 Down-cutspiralbits.template. 14 Ellipses.140–1141 straightbitsfor.67–70.40 jigsfor.18.181 frame-and-panel.bit.85 Fence jointing.211 Endcuts.102 Hardboardtemplates.125–26.106 lippededge.66 Feeddirection.
124.158 Overarmguide.118 Reversiblecope-and-stickbits.190–91.11–12 Jointingfence.SeeProfiles Mortise-and-tenonjoints.182–83.106–107 S-curves.33.38 Lockmiterjoints.168–69 splined.106.125 Lapjoints.94.147–49.170–71 Molding.139 glue.173–77 dado.57–59 Lighting.fluted.222–27 Pilots.201 Panels flat.6.188–89 raised.68 Joints bird’s-mouth.164–67.103 P Panelgrooves.42–43 Reverseogeeprofile.33.138.133–34.203–4 plungerouterfor.33 Plasticbaseplates.41.63 Ovoloprofile.108 beads.104–105 complex.55–56 Patternbits.139.178 Kickback.103–104 thumbnail.63–65 forarchedmolding.116–18 cove.101–103.182.225–27 Quirkbeadprofile.83 Lifts.124.56–57 forbeadedges.110 benchtop.19 Plasticlaminates.107 handheldroutingfor.168–71 mortise-and-tenon.158 Powerfeeder.116–17 faceofaboard.103.102 Lockcollar. 186–87 Roundoverprofile.19 PorterCableOmnijig.135–36.202 Pushblocks.20–21.135.17–25 Routerbits.135–36.149 miter.202 Lippeddrawers.181 plywoodorMDF.44.66 Q Quartercolumns.102–103.64 built-up.5.179 tongue-and-groove.118 Omnijig.54 forbuilt-upmolding.84 up-cutspiralbitfor.86–87 vs.121–22 basefor.114–15 grainfor.29–30 Phenolicroutertabletop.110 bullnose.218 Rail-and-stilebits.plastic.139.145–46 See alsoDovetailjoints K Katiejig.199–201 Particleboardroutertabletop.142–43 Panel-Locbarrierguard.163 lap.61.39.188–89 R Rabbetbits.147–49.84 Plywood baseplates.13 formortises.102 simple.164–67.159–60 Keyholebits.53–54.9–10 Mitergauge.103.134 box(finger).96.19 panelgroovesfor.79 Profiles.212 Narrowendcuts.102.55 templates.212 Polycarbonatebaseplates.101–184.108.40.206–13.45–46.109 chamfer.21.118 routertabletop.182 routertabletop.103.104 onfurniture.149 Largebits.69 Laminatetrimmers.181.71 building.104 arched.jigsfor.136–39 plungeroutersfor.62.139 Motors.183–85.safetyfor.106.138.182–83 Raisedpanels.40–41. 190–91 Mortises freehand.135.136.11–12 edgeguidefor.182–83.181.32 Laminates.168–69 Lockmortise. 190–91 rabbet.45.80 ogee.194 N Nails.101–103 handheldroutingfor.46–47 ofcollets.182.103 roundover.36–37.routertables.139.65.211 Moldingprofiles.56 Pilasters. 194–98 Raised-panelbits.102.7.119–20 complex.121–22 232 Index .fixed-baserouters.63 baseplates.7.38 Patterntrimming.14–15 Mullions.52–75 accessoriesfor.182.94 L “L”fence.65.106 routertablesfor.101–103.118 ovolo.102–103 Powersupply.105.103 bead.114–22 applied.17 ofrouters.183–85 Rail-and-stiledoors.199–201 Replaceablecarbideinserts.135–36.138.79 Lippeddoors.125 Plungerouters.119–20 M Maintenance ofbits.142–43 panels.103–106 astragal.26 Matchedbitsets.102 Routeraccessories.103.107–108 eased.148 Rabbetjoints.41–42 MDF panels.116–18 crown.218 rule.6.104 combining.203–4 O Ogeeprofile.83 lock.164 Mortisingjigs.103.118 quirkbead.172 biscuit.fluted.SeeBits Routertables.100 Miterjoints.63–64 Panel-raisingbits.168–71 lock.55–56 Micrometerdials.
83 forroutertables.99 mitergaugefor.67–70.139 fastening.164 V V-groovebits.135.139 Tables.61.forbullnoseprofile.29–30.45 Specialtybits.124 Shelves.5.65 liftsfor.avoiding.66 guidebearingsfor.54 Tabletops beadsfor.116–17 Spiralbits.123.9 maintenanceof.108 Tablesawwingroutertables.102.222.66 securing.21.corner.41.47 Shear-anglebits.36.126.194–98 Scallopedtabletops.7.30.65–66 sledfor. 217 guidebearingsfor.212 forscallopedtabletops.13 historyof.14 Verticalpanel-raisingbits.drop-leaf.164 Splinedmiterjoints.109–13 forfluting.9 Startingpins.36–37 forflush-trimming.126.rubber.97–99 stationary.36 flush-trim.183.205–7 Slot-cuttingbits.82–83 forinteriorcuts.105.167 topof.41.75 smallstockon.42–43 Spicecabinet.145–46 Triple-flutebits.212 forflush-trimming.11–12.91–92 Stoppedgrooves.108 Self-releasingcollets.183 forcurvedcuts.forcoveprofile.SeeRoutertables Tablesaw.210–11.183–85 Stopblocks.95.28 Skewedstraightbits.181–82 Stile-and-railbits.6–13 See alsoHandheldrouting Routingpad.91–92 supportstandfor.50–51 StanleyTools.205–7 dust-collectionsystemsfor.13.125–26.60 foredgeshaping.104 scalloped.202 Toggleclamps.167 Throughdovetailjoints.212 Tongue-and-groovejoints.23–24 Tables.router.57–59 mitergaugefor.14.97–98 Softstartrouters.double-sided.108 dished.70 T T-square-typejigs.114–15 fencefor.218 materialsfor.37 compression.28.224 jigsfor.109 changingbitson.6.103 forrabbets.93.79 templatesfor.168–71 formolding.179 Index 233 .65.20 forjoinery.125–26.14 Up-cutspiralbits.38–39 Smallstock flush-trimmingcurves.32 Sharpeningbits.122 Stationaryroutertables.75 Slidingdovetailjoints.102–103.85 Squarebaseplates.221 Tape.72–74 Routers.210–21 forcornershelves.103–104 Single-flutebits.30.102.71 tablesawwing.28–29 Shearflush-trimbits.212 Templates.183 Sashdoors.36 down-cut.108.201 W Wingcutterbits.62.84 Square-sidedgrooves.133 Straight-sidedbaseplates.184–98 fordrawerjoinery.209.53 Stickingbits.63–64.28 Two-passgrooves.224–27 forgrooves.65.100 formiterjoints.213 guidebushingsfor.13 softstart.217 fluted.14.125 forflush-trimming.41 Simpleprofiles.36.136–39 largebitsin.211 Safety forcope-and-stickbits.106–107 forpanels.36.97–98 Tenons.30.144 U Universalmotors.199–201 powerfeederfor.6–13 fixed-base.16 Shanks.26 plunge.126.116–17 fordoorframejoinery.165–66.bit.156–57.215–16 dovetail.42. 111–12 forfacemolding.38 Stackingbits.60–61.124 forjoinery.128–29.54 fortenons.122 forhandheldrouting.35–36 Variablespeedmotors.30.96 forcrownmolding.91–92 Stoppedcuts.212 Scribedbeads.78–79 Z Zero-clearancefence.83 forlargebits.221 Screws.217 up-cut.62 insertplatesfor.138.54–56.65–66 forsmallstock.79 Rulejoints.53 stopcutson.36 Sled.219–20 forcurves.228–29 edgeshapingfor.179 S S-curves.147–49 safetyfor.219–20 Sign-makingbits.66 Sashbits.45–46.45–46.64.58–59 forcovecuts.45 typesof.159–60 Thumbnailprofile.140–1141 Straightbits.94.221 forsmallstock.135.6–11.140–46 guards.134 Workbench.100 safetyfor.106–220.127.116.11–71 Splintering.
Visit our website at www.95 CAN ISBN 1-56158-770-2 $39. $52. Jigs&Fixtures SANDOR NAGYSZALANCZY Fences and Guides Sliding Jigs Portable Powertool Jigs Guards and Hold Downs Stops and Indexes Taunton’s complete Illustrated Guide to Working with Wood AndyRae ISBN978-1-56158-683-7 Product#070765 $39. is a professional furniture designer. and hand tools.95Canada ABOUT THE AUTHOR Jigs Other Books in the Series: Sandor Nagyszalanczy of Bonny Doon.95Canada . $54.95Canada CRAFTS & HOBBIES Taunton’s COMPLETE ILLUSTRATED Guide to THIS STEP-BY-STEP PICTORIAL REFERENCE covers the wide range of woodshop jigs and fixtures you can build. $32.95 U. including Woodshop Dust Control. this book makes it easy to find exactly the information you are looking for. portable power tools.95Canada Taunton’s complete Illustrated Guide to Finishing JeffJewitt ISBN978-1-56158-592-2 Product#070712 $39. Nagyszalanczy has authored and photographed nine books also published by The Taunton Art of Fine Tools. $52. $52.95U. $52.95U. Setting Up Shop.S.S. $39. $52.95Canada PaPerBack Taunton’s complete Illustrated Guild to Period Furniture details LonnieBird ISBN978-1-56158-590-8 Product#070708 $27. $52.S. Power Tools.95 / $54. $52.S.S.95Canada Taunton’s complete Illustrated Guide to Using Woodworking Tools LonnieBird ISBN978-156158-597-7 Product#070729 $39. $52. Over 850 photos and drawings illustrate how to build jigs for machines.95U. Organized for quick access.95 CANADA ISBN 1-56158-770-2 53995 Taunton 0 94115 58770 9 9 781561 587704 02 DVRhdW50b24gUHJlc3MMVGF1bnRvbiBV 01 c2VyAEMfH6w= FnL1 02 0044 02 c2VyAEKpugc= 01 DVRhdW50b24gUHJlc3MMVGF1bnRvbiBV FnL1 02 0044 Taunton Product #070832 S The complete Illustrated Guide to Shaping Wood LonnieBird ISBN978-1-56158-400-0 Product#070533 $39. California.Other Books in the Series: HardcOver The complete Illustrated Guide to Joinery GaryRogowski Get accurate.S.S.S.95U. A custom furniture builder for over twenty-five years.95Canada Taunton’s complete Illustrated Guide to Jigs & Fixtures SandorNagyszalanczy ISBN978-1-56158-770-4 Product#070832 $39. from fences to stops and indexes. The Ingenious. and Tools Rare and N AG Y S Z A L A N C Z Y Press. freelance writer.95Canada Taunton’s COMPLETE ILLUSTRATED Guide to & Fixtures The complete Illustrated Guide to Furniture and cabinet construction AndyRae p P ISBN978-1-156158-402-4 Product#070534 $39.S.95U.95U.taunton. He is a four-time winner of the Golden Hammer award for excellence in home and workshop writing. and devices to improve workshop safety. as well as jigs for marking and layout. the single best source of woodworking ideas and information anywhere. he has also been a senior editor of Fine Woodworking magazine.S.95U.S. $36.00Canada Taunton’s complete Illustrated Guild to choosing and Installing Hardware RobertJ.95U.95Canada Taunton’s complete Illustrated Guide to Sharpening ThomasLie-Nielsen ISBN978-1-56158-657-8 Product#070737 $39.Settich ISBN978-1-56158-561-8 Product#070647 $29.95Canada Taunton’s complete Illustrated Guild to Box Making DougStowe ISBN978-1-56158-593-9 Product#070721 $24. The Taunton Press also publishes Fine Woodworking magazine. consistent results by building ISBN978-1-56158-401-7 your own custom Jigs & Fixtures Product#070535 $39.95U.com US $39. photographer.00U. $52.95U.S. and tool con- ® ® ® ® ® sultant.S.95U.95Canada Taunton’s complete Illustrated Guide to Turning RichardRaffan ISBN978-1-56158-672-1 Product#070757 $39.
He also designs router bits and router accessories for the nation’s top manufacturers. Table of Contents: w Choosing Routers w All About Bits w Router Tables w Common Cuts w Edging and Molding w Flush-Trimming w Router Joinery w Doors and Drawers w Template Routing w Special Operations Lonnie Bird is a professional woodworker Look for other Taunton Press books wherever books are sold or visit our website at www.C R A F TS & H OBB iES Get the most from your ROUTER The router is the most versatile tool you can own. The Bandsaw Book. but they can do so much more.com The Taunton Press also publishes Fine Woodworking magazine. Box 5507 Newtown.taunton. P. raise panels. Tennessee. drawers. flush-trim. CT 06470-5507 www. Pl Taunton Product #077988 . doors. A contributor to Fine Woodworking. and woodworking teacher operating his own school in Dandridge. and cut nearly every joint used to build cabinets.O. the single best source of woodworking ideas and information anywhere.com The Taunton Press 63 South Main Street. and Taunton’s Complete Illustrated Guide to Using Woodworking Tools. Bird is also the author of The Shaper Book. Outfitted with the right bits and accessories. and furniture.taunton. a router can also cut grooves. Routers excel at shaping decorative profiles. Taunton’s Complete Illustrated Guide to Shaping Wood.