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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.
Blake, after the first of the year my main project will be a new router table. you have done a nice job on these blogs with informative detail which I plan to use in building my table. I too have been known to procrastinate when I am unsure of a cut or procedure or just plain scared of the outcome, good to know I'm not alone.

Thanks Ron (RAH)

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207 Posts
A Proud Moment

So, No more messin' around! Its time to cut the hole!

With my template all biscuited and glued up, I shaved off the other half of the biscuits and sanded everything flat. With a little sanding and shaving off the inside I got the router plate to fit perfectly inside. So I decided to use my fabricated router plate template to make a one-piece template. This way I could also test the accuracy of it.

So I sandwiched together the template, one solid piece of plywood which would be the test piece as well as the final template, and a scrap for underneath. Then I made the cut with my template router bit:

Here is the result: A perfect template.

A perfect fit!

I used carpet tape to stick it to the table top:

I then routed the inner "shelf" which the plate will sit on:

And then routed out the inner part, which cut the whole:

Dropped the plate in… perfect fit… A proud moment!

Used my little dial indicator jig to make sure it was flat:

And the rest of these photos are just to show off:

You may have seen this on my projects page (throat insert holder):

Thanks for staying tuned. It has been fun to build and I had a good time documenting and sharing the journey. But I am really glad this project is done. I still have a few small details to add. I want to oil it, it needs some ventilation, and I need to make a router bit holder for the drawers. But for now this is pretty much a wrap. I am looking forward to getting back to some real projects.
This is nice, can I come over and play with your new toy?
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