Cutting mat as router table surface?

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Forum topic by chodaranger posted 04-19-2017 02:58 AM 576 views 0 times favorited 3 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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4 posts in 1324 days

04-19-2017 02:58 AM

Topic tags/keywords: router table surface

Planning to build a router table and thought it might be nice to have a gridded surface. Has anyone tried using a cutting mat, laminated to something like mdf, as the surface of a router table?

The self-healing mats seem like they might not be quite smooth enough, but I’ve seen some mats that are harder and have a slightly beaded texture… could work well.

It may be a dumb idea but seems like there might be some utility in it.


3 replies so far

View TungOil's profile


1371 posts in 1097 days

#1 posted 04-19-2017 03:16 AM

I believe it would have too much friction to work well. by contrast, I laminated the top of mine with some left over Formica to make it smooth and slippery. Stock feeds much better that way.

-- The optimist says "the glass is half full". The pessimist says "the glass is half empty". The engineer says "the glass is twice as big as it needs to be"

View SignWave's profile


472 posts in 3637 days

#2 posted 04-19-2017 01:24 PM

Seems like an interesting idea, but for a router table, the workpiece is going to constantly be moving relative to the cutter, so the grid lines on the surface wouldn’t help as much as you might think. I agree that Formica is hard to beat. I’ve also used some leftover Pergo for a router table because I had it lying around, and it works well, too.

-- Barry,

View DrDirt's profile


4600 posts in 4344 days

#3 posted 04-19-2017 02:20 PM

I have an exacto mat. and it is kind of ‘grippy’

Could be fixed by spraying with some deft lacquer I suppose.

Since this is a one time deal – - you might take a piece of Formica in a color you like, and have someone Laser engrave it with the grid.
I had some box lids laser engraved with emblems and text, and it was 8 bucks each.

Have to find someone that can do a large piece… or 2 medium size pieces.

-- “The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why.” Mark Twain

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