Router Sled for flattening upgrade

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Project by rrdesigns posted 07-04-2011 04:04 AM 18253 views 45 times favorited 11 comments Add to Favorites Watch

After viewing Mochoa’s project (, and reading Bob Kollman’s comment I decided to use their ideas and suggestions and create my own router sled for flattening cutting boards. I built a box with some gripper shelf liner in the bottom to help hold the board still and to act as a guide and containment area for the boards. It has a 3/4” false bottom insert to accommodate different thicknesses of boards. “Slipit” sliding compound was applied as a lubricant for the rails and the bottom of the sled. The sled consists of a sheet of Lexan with a hole drilled into it for the bit shank and countersunk holes to mount the router. I removed the router base and used the Lexan in its’ place. 3/8” x 2” oak strips were glued to the Lexan to act as the sled, with extra length included for hand holds. A Whiteside Bowl & Tray bit in the router works well with one exception, the router bit occasionally left burn marks on the board, mostly around the edges. They sanded out but were a bit of a nuisance. I’ll go in search of a better bit and see if it makes any difference…UPDATE (7/6/11)...switched the bit out for Freud’s dish carving version with better results.

-- Beth, Oklahoma, Rambling Road Designs

11 comments so far

View wood_wench's profile


89 posts in 4670 days

#1 posted 07-04-2011 04:30 AM

An elegantly simple solution to a difficult task. I have the luxury of an open arm drum sander but i like the router sled idea better to flatten the cutting boards. And, “slip-it” is great stuff. Especially for a jig like this.

View Wayne's profile


196 posts in 3832 days

#2 posted 07-04-2011 04:41 AM

Hmm… Ive gotta make me one of these!
Looks good too.

View dubsaloon's profile


623 posts in 4033 days

#3 posted 07-04-2011 09:07 AM

Nice Idea! I think I like it.

-- The works of evil people are not the problem. It is the "Good" people standing by and watching not speaking up. Dubsaloon

View HalDougherty's profile


1820 posts in 4476 days

#4 posted 07-04-2011 02:29 PM

I hold boards in my router sled so they won’t move, by drilling a series of holes like you have on the top of a work bench and using short dowels to stop the board. I tighten them by using a board cut from one corner to the other to make two wedges and tap them between one set of dowels and the board I’m holding. It’s quick and easy to set up and quick to release. Nothing worse than a nice cutting board shooting through the jig with the router bit at 20,000 + rpms gouging the top of your project…

-- Hal, Tennessee

View Bertha's profile


13624 posts in 3932 days

#5 posted 07-04-2011 02:32 PM

Another strong argument for the venerable PC690. Look at that little guy go!

-- My dad and I built a 65 chev pick up.I killed trannys in that thing for some reason-Hog

View Mauricio's profile


7168 posts in 4391 days

#6 posted 07-04-2011 04:27 PM

Beth, this is so cool. Its awesome being able to share ideas and have them inspire someone else. Thanks for the call out.

I like all of your improvements. The non slip pad, the bowl bit, the slip it. I never heard of slipit. What is that? Is it like a polyurethane or an actual lubricant? I also like the lexan addition. I need to get some lexan and incorporate it into my sled.

I would like to figure out a way to be able to quickly clamp the router in place so that removing the plate to screw it to the sled wouldnt be necesary. So far I’m using double stick tape which thinking about it, maybe its not that much faster than dealing with 3 screws.

-- Mauricio - Woodstock, GA - "Confusion is the Womb of Learning, with utter conviction being it's Tomb" Prof. T.O. Nitsch

View rrdesigns's profile


541 posts in 4425 days

#7 posted 07-04-2011 05:18 PM

Mochoa> Also, removing the plate, which on my router was solid black, added to the visibility which the direct connection to the Lexan. And attaching three screws takes very little time at all.

HalDougherty> I didn’t have any trouble with board movement on top of the non slip pad, but I was taking very slight passes just to be sure. I’ll keep your idea in mind should need be though. Thanks.

-- Beth, Oklahoma, Rambling Road Designs

View Tim Kindrick's profile

Tim Kindrick

369 posts in 3793 days

#8 posted 07-04-2011 08:01 PM

You gotta love Slip-it!!! That stuff is awesome!!!!! Great job on this sled!!!

-- I have metal in my neck but wood in my blood!!

View Nate Finch's profile

Nate Finch

49 posts in 4164 days

#9 posted 07-05-2011 12:50 AM

Newbie here, wondering why you are using this rather than a thickness planer? Is it because it’s end grain, and so you can’t get a good smooth surface with the planer?

-- Nate

View rrdesigns's profile


541 posts in 4425 days

#10 posted 07-05-2011 04:45 AM

Nate: Running end grain under a planer blade is a bad idea. Not only do you risk tear-out it is extremely hard on the blades. Some other LJ’s say they have done it taking very small bites, but I’m not willing to risk the potential damage to either my boards or my blades.

-- Beth, Oklahoma, Rambling Road Designs

View Rogthedodge's profile


1 post in 1451 days

#11 posted 11-15-2017 03:47 PM

I would suggest gluing oversize parallel temporary strips to two opposite edges of the rough board, then using these to provide guide to carry out the flattening on a router table, i.e.using an upside down sled principle.

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