Your woodwork project is almost done. Now all you have to do is put some finishing touches with smaller wood pieces. You bring out the wood router, but you cannot get an accurate cut out because of the small size.
Using the router in a traditional sense when working with such size does not work because you can’t effectively clamp the small piece down. In this case, it is better to take the wood piece to your router instead of vice-versa.
You can achieve this by mounting your router to a table. Since most of us used routers by holding them, mounting is pretty new. This is why we will talk about how to mount a router to a table and everything related to it.
Obviously, you need something to mount your router on. To do that, you have two options. Either buy an already-made router table or make a router table yourself.
The ready-made router table is expensive, but it makes the job a lot easier. It has many features that will blow you away. On the other hand, the DIY router table will most likely look very mature, but it will get the job done.
So, the decision is up to you. If you have lots of money, you can avoid the hassle and just buy a ready-made router table.
But, if you like making your stuff, go for the second option. In this article, we will show you how to turn any table into a router table and how you can mount a router to it.
How To Mount A Router To A Table – 3 Useful Steps
Cost: you will need a fresh table and the router, so we will not include those prices. Excluding those, you have to spend around 35 to 55 dollars.
Time: the time needed to mount the router to your table depends on how thick your table is and how fast you can work. Usually, it takes about an hour.
Now let’s look at the tools and materials you will need to mount the router to a table.
A drilling machine.
A router plate or 1sq foot of plexiglass/acrylic.
A jigsaw blade.
Step 1 – Marking Out The Table
Before marking out the table, you have to choose one. Either buy a router plate, which will cost you around 35 to 60 dollars, or buy 1sq feet of thick acrylic, which will cost you only 5 dollars.
Obviously, the router plate will be more durable and strong. The acrylic, on the other hand, is prone to scratch and might even break. But, both will do the job.
Let’s just assume you went with a router plate (you can also apply the steps on acrylic). Put the router plate on the table, and use a marker to draw a border around the plate.
Let’s say you have a 20cm x 11cm plate. The border should be exactly 20cm x 11cm. Now you have to draw an inner square about 6cm smaller than the first border.
Step 2 – Cutting The Table
Now it’s time to cut ourselves a hole in the table. Start by making 4 holes in the inner border. Use a drill machine to do that.
When you are done making the holes, insert a jigsaw blade to make the cut. Make sure you cut a straight line. Now the centerpiece should fall off.
Once you are done cutting the inner border, now it’s time to make sure the router plate sits flush with the table. Make sure there is no imbalance between the table surface and the plate surface.
To do this, you have to use your router. Use the plate to adjust the cutting depth of the router. Adjust the height of the sub-base until the tip is flush with the top of the plate.
Now start cutting the first border. You have to be very careful while doing this because the plate should sit flush and snuggly on the table.
And here’s how the plate should look once you place it on the table.
Step 3 – Mounting The Router
When you are sure that the plate fits the table flush and snuggly, it is time to prepare the plate itself.
If your router plate has four screw holes like the image above, use the drill machine to make 4 holes again. This is done to prevent the router from moving.
Remove the router base, and mark the screw holes that the base has. This one is easy to do if you have an acrylic sheet.
Router plates are usually made out of aluminum and have some pre-drilled holes. If your router base matches those holes, then move forward.
If not, then use a drill press to drill holes into the marked areas. Now your router base can be attached to the router plate.
All you have to do is screw in the router base to the router plate and place it on the table.
If you are thinking of leaving the router on the table, then screw it in using the 4 holes we made at the starting of step three. But, if you plan on taking the router off the table, don’t screw the plate in.
Frequently Asked Questions
Question: What can you do with a router table?
Answer: You can trim edges, cut grooves, and mold way faster with a router table than using a router alone. This is because you don’t have to clamp down your wood when using a router table.
Question: Can you use a router as a jointer?
Answer: Yes, you can use a router as a jointer, but you will need a quality router table. The self-made router table in this article won’t be able to work as a jointer. You will have to buy a ready-made router table.
Question: Can you router epoxy resin?
Answer: Yes, you can use a router and epoxy resin. If you want to create an inlay using your router and epoxy resin, you have to make a plunge cut using the router.
Make an inner and outer border, and cut according to it. Make sure to adjust the depth of the router bit. After cutting, pour epoxy resin, and wait for it to dry.
Question: How deep can a router cut?
Answer: The depth of a cut depends on the size of your router bit. There are several router bit sizes you can choose from. The deepest/largest is 4.4 inches.
A wood router is an absolutely necessary tool for woodworking. Just like all the other tools, you can’t finish your projects without a wood router. You can trim, shape, mold woods. You can also cut grooves, rabbets, and inlays using a router.
All these jobs can become a bit tiresome or awkward when you are using your hands to hold the router.
It gets even worse when the wood piece you are working with is hard to clamp down. In such cases, it is better to mount the router to a table. The difference is massive.
We hope you found this guide on how to mount a router to a table helpful. Go through the article once more if you have any confusion still.