My First Router Table #4: Drawers and a Top

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Blog entry by Dave posted 07-25-2011 03:09 AM 3166 reads 0 times favorited 1 comment Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 3: Wiring Things Up Part 4 of My First Router Table series no next part

For me, this is a fun part of the project because it’s when things really start to come together.

I didn’t get any photos when I built the top but I basically glued together two sheets of MDF and added some laminate countertop from that big orange box store down the street. I trimmed it with red oak, chamfered the sharp edges, and stained it with a combination of TransTint Dye and General Finishes Candlelight.

The only unusual part about the top was an idea I had for mounting it to the cabinet. Before I glued the first piece of MDF to the 2nd piece, I pre-drilled it and added counter-sunk threaded inserts so I could just bolt the entire top to the carcass. That way, if I ever mess it up, I can make a new top and bolt it on without having to destroy the whole cabinet.

For the drawers I used birch plywood with maple faces (using some scrap I had lying around). I wanted to try my hand at making inset drawers so mounting things was challenging.

I used a Woodside Locking Miter Bit to cut the joinery at the corners of the drawer boxes. Using that bit on plywood wasn’t a fun experience. It made for lots of tearout and the bit likes to throw boards around – after one cut I made myself a nice stable jig to help me avoid kickback. I also learned near the end of the process that scoring the plywood before routing it helps reduce tearout a lot. Here’s a shot of one of the top drawers after I glued it up and mounted it to the blum drawer slides:

For the larger bottom drawers, I decided that the locking miter joints were too much of a pain, so I used plain-old rabbets. MUCH easier. Here’s a shot or two of the cabinet with all 7 drawers in place (the 8th is a dummy drawer to hide the crank for the sidewinder when it’s not in use):

Here’s a mockup of where the sidewinder’s crank will be. To test it, I built a quick and dirty drawer box, mounted the crank in it, and made sure everything ran smoothly. I’m still figuring out a way to slide the dummy drawer-front into place when the table’s not in use. If it’s too painful, though, I’ll just leave a crank in the last spot and call it a day:

The project is really coming together now. My next step is to trim up the drawers so they all fit smoothly and figure out how to re-align a couple of the drawers on the blum slides with the face frame…it was hard to get them to line up just right. For example, this drawer sits about 1/16th of an inch proud of the face frame:

For shop furniture that’s fine but since I’m also using this as practice for some “real” cabinetry, any thoughts on how to get this re-aligned without trial and error (there are only so many screw holes I can make before I need to build a new drawer box, LOL) would be appreciated!

-- "I'm not afraid of heights. I'm afraid of widths." - Steven Wright

1 comment so far

View David Grimes's profile

David Grimes

2078 posts in 3447 days

#1 posted 07-25-2011 06:09 PM

Very nice work, Dave.

-- If you're going to stir the pot, think BIG spoon or SMALL boat paddle. David Grimes, Georgia

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