Router Sled to flatten large slabs.

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Project by HalDougherty posted 10-06-2009 02:38 AM 55757 views 68 times favorited 31 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I have 4 or 5 logs slabbed and dry enough to use for building benches and tables, so it’s time to make a router sled to get them as flat as possible and do it as quick as possible. My number one product is gunstocks and I use a Don Allen Duplicator from Dakota Arms to carve them. I used it as a base for the router sled. A couple of angle irons clamped to my workbench would have worked also. The sides are stainless steel rods on supports and I need to get some slotted linear bearings to finish the jig. I temporarily clamped a couple of boards on the end to hold the 1” stainless steel bars the router sled rides on. Then I bolted my router and two extended linear bearings to a piece of plywood. It works GREAT! I made a cherry bench and when I get it finished I’ll post more photos.

-- Hal, Tennessee

31 comments so far

View RexMcKinnon's profile


2593 posts in 4479 days

#1 posted 10-06-2009 02:44 AM

Nice setup

-- If all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail!

View a1Jim's profile


118296 posts in 4861 days

#2 posted 10-06-2009 02:46 AM

View cabinetmaster's profile


10873 posts in 4842 days

#3 posted 10-06-2009 02:48 AM

Like to see the final project. Might need to build one for myself.

-- Jerry--A man can never have enough tools or clamps

View Innovator's profile


3589 posts in 4698 days

#4 posted 10-06-2009 03:17 AM

Great idea.

-- Whether You Think You Can or You Think You Can't, YOU ARE RIGHT!!!

View reggiek's profile


2240 posts in 4554 days

#5 posted 10-06-2009 05:25 AM

Interesting….are you using this as a precursor to a planer….or in lieu of one?

-- Woodworking.....My small slice of heaven!

View patron's profile


13722 posts in 4625 days

#6 posted 10-06-2009 05:29 AM

great rig ,
where do you ge the ’ linear bearings ’ ?

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View woodworm's profile


14477 posts in 4875 days

#7 posted 10-06-2009 07:23 AM

Nice jig!

-- masrol, kuala lumpur, MY.

View antmjr's profile


262 posts in 4468 days

#8 posted 10-06-2009 08:41 AM

what kind of bit are you using?

-- Antonio

View Splinterman's profile


23074 posts in 4645 days

#9 posted 10-06-2009 11:08 AM

Simple and effective.

View HalDougherty's profile


1820 posts in 4521 days

#10 posted 10-06-2009 12:34 PM

Linear bearings are expensive, unless you find an auction on e-bay at the right price… I have another set, but they aren’t “open” bearings to slide on the duplicator frame. I’ll replace the scrap wood on the sides with a bearing platform when I find the right auction. I’m also going to replace the plywood base with some 3/*” lexan that I have in the shop. I’m a lot more comfortable when I can see the cutter and what’s happening to the wood.

The bit I used was just one that was handy. It’s a 3/4” straight, plunge cutting bit. It left visable ridges from the sharp edge of the bit, (you can see ‘em, but you can’t feel them and it only takes a few passes with a cabinet scraper to remove them) I’m going to try a bowl cutting bit with rounded edges and a 3/4” flat bottom when I flatten the next slab. The finish was so good that if the ridges weren’t there, I’d start sanding with 100 grit.

-- Hal, Tennessee

View flintbone's profile


213 posts in 4441 days

#11 posted 10-06-2009 01:03 PM

Good job.

-- If I had only known, I would have been a locksmith. - Albert Einstein

View Julian's profile


884 posts in 4810 days

#12 posted 10-06-2009 02:18 PM

Looks like an expensive alternative to just using a piece of plywood with hardwood edges to keep it from flexing.

-- Julian, Homewood, IL

View HalDougherty's profile


1820 posts in 4521 days

#13 posted 10-06-2009 06:42 PM

I already had the base (Gunstock duplicator) and everything else was just spare stuff in the shop. So my total outlay was zip. And the main reaon I built the router sled was to have a way to quicky flatten a raw slab. It opens the number of potential customers to those who don’t have a way to flatten a slab to make a bench or table. I’m going to make a bench, a table and an office desk out of some of my slabs for the sawmill office and line the wall with slabs ready for customers to buy for their own projects. oh, the 1” stainless steel was scrap from a local machine shop where the owner, said: “Take anything you want, it’s just scrap” I’m going back this week to pick up some 3/8” stainless sheet steel (cutoff from a CNC plasma cutter) and some 1/2” 6061-T6 aluminum. I’ll find something to do with it!

-- Hal, Tennessee

View oldskoolmodder's profile


802 posts in 4964 days

#14 posted 10-06-2009 09:23 PM

Nice, and yes an expensive alternative to something like what I have here – my router thickness planer

BUT, if it works and is right for you, then that’s what counts the most.

-- Respect your shop tools and they will respect you - Ric

View upperwoodsman's profile


40 posts in 4630 days

#15 posted 10-07-2009 05:20 AM

Nice Job very useful.

-- Scott JoBurg MI The More you know the less mistakes...........

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