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Tedious details... Gettin' there

Here's what I have accomplished in the past week or so…

So last time I talked about my drawer construction and my not-so-orthodox method of "biscuit-slotting" them together (the "don't try this at home, kids" method). I got scolded for that a little, and for good reason. It probably wouldn't have lasted as long. So I ended up just shooting them full of brads to reinforce them since I figured out that the brads would be hidden by the slides anyway.

By the way, here is how the drawers started out:

So I then I [correctly] biscuit jointed the drawer fronts on to the drawers:

I clamped and Glued (this picture is really just to show off some new clamps I got!):

And Here is the result:

OH MY GAWD! I am glad to have that out of the way. So, what's next? Finally, time to get that router plate installed. I have been putting this off because I am a little scared. What reason could I possibly have to punch a big hole in a perfectly good table? Oh yea, it's a router table. Ok, here goes…

I had been agonizing about how to make the template to rout the opening. I have already spent enough money on this project and didn't want to buy one, plus shipping, etc.

The corners of the plate are rounded to a 1 1/2" radius. Ideally they would have been a radius small enough to match one of my template router bits with bearings. That way I could have just made a rectangle template and the router bit would take care of the radius.

But no, Incra had to get all fancy with their 1 1/2" round corners. So creating that inside radius became the next challence. What I did was drill a hole in a piece of plywood with a 1 1/2" forstner bit and carefully cut away the waste so I was left with four corners around the hole that were barely held together (I wish I had taken a photo of that). Then the four corners easily broke apart.

This next picture is the beginning of the template. The two inside pieces are carefully machined to the length of the plate. For the other dimension (width of the plate) I just slid them together until they contacted the plate, which is sitting in between them. Notice my radiused corner pieces sitting near the corners (which I will insert later):

So now, how to join the parts of the template? Hmmmm, how about… MORE BISCUITS!

Ok, now I know what you are thinking. But I actually saw this in a magazine article so it is legit! I used tape to temporarily hold the joints together and then I made the biscuit slot across both pieces.

Then after I glue in the biscuits I will cut the extra half off and sand the whole thing.

Here is the fully glued up template. Notice the 1 1/2 radius corner pieces which I glued in place:

The corner pieces up close:

So when the glue sets up the next step will be to cut off the biscuit excess and sand the whole thing. I will need to especially sand the insides of the rounded corners because I left it a little tight on purpose. I will test the accuracy of the template on another piece of plywood. I will rout out the opening and see how tight the plate fits. Then if I need to do more sanding I can. Once it is the perfect size I will rout the real thing. Wish me luck.
you got a great style blake , now me i just bull in and start sawin and chiselin and swearin oops not swearin yet that always comes last. i start gluin parts and viola !! thats when the swearin starts ! all is not lost it makes a heck of a good campfire while i hatch plan B . HEHE
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