router table sag

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Forum topic by Nate L. posted 02-26-2015 08:42 AM 2405 views 0 times favorited 5 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Nate L.

119 posts in 3023 days

02-26-2015 08:42 AM

Topic tags/keywords: router table sag flatness

I built an oblong router table last year in the hopes of getting an incra router fence system. I guess I was extra good last year because my wife bought me the LS17 for xmas. =) Anyway, I have a triton router mounted on a Kreg plate. The table top is a piece of half inch mdf as a base and then a 3/4” of the formica covered press board (non technical term) on top of that. I was getting everything aligned to use the router last night and decided to check for flatness and discovered that the table has a noticeable say to it (guesstimating about 1/32”). I made the top with the two pieces laminated and screwed together to avoid this. Does anyone have any advice on how to tackle this? Should I remove the router and try to brace the table top or am I going to have to build or buy a new top? I will try to get a picture of the issue tomorrow. I am using a good quality straight edge to check for flatness.


-- Nate, Fredericksburg, VA,

5 replies so far

View joey502's profile


558 posts in 2528 days

#1 posted 02-26-2015 03:20 PM

You may have to remake your top. 1/2” MDF is not very rigid even with the top layer on it. Is the top (3/4”) layer particle board or MDF? What are the dimensions of the unsupported portion of the top?

View firefighterontheside's profile


21361 posts in 2866 days

#2 posted 02-26-2015 03:32 PM

Depending on the construction of your cabinet, you could put some support stretcher across it that help support the weight as long as they don’t interfere with the router. I have the big triton on my top that I just made with two layers of 3/4 MDF. The cabinet only spans about 14”.

-- Bill M. "People change, walnut doesn't" by Gene.

View JesseTutt's profile


854 posts in 3120 days

#3 posted 02-26-2015 03:35 PM

My router top with Incra fence is 36×48 inches and consists of 3 layers of 3/4” MDF glued and screwed together. I added white laminate on the top and bottom. I will still remove the router and plate if I don’t intend to use the table for long periods of time.

My second router table uses the Sommerfeld aluminum router top measuring about 24×36 inches. Each of the three pieces is flat and is more than capable of holding a large router with no snag. Unfortunately, the tongue and grove between the pieces causes about a 1/64” unevenness between the pieces. Sommerfeld customer support did not feel this was a problem.

Good luck with your table problems.

-- Jesse, Saint Louis, Missouri

View goochs's profile


62 posts in 2239 days

#4 posted 02-26-2015 04:37 PM

I have the incra table and the ls17 and the triton. I built a frame for mine that goes around the edges and through the center just past the plate. I also used the aluminum plate that incra sold for the triton. Don’t seem to have any sag and I leave my router in the table all the time. I think the framing gives it the strength it need. I believe(not sure though) the incra table is 1 1/4” thick.
If you can take your router out and the top is level you could add those aluminum angle channels that the hardware stores sell which would add a lot of support.

View Ghidrah's profile


667 posts in 2232 days

#5 posted 02-26-2015 05:47 PM

1. Whatever you do to the top you must do to the bottom or it’ll cup.
2. I never take my router out of the table except to clean it.
3. I have an overall dip of just under 27/1024” directly in front of the plate across 32.5” of table length.
4. The dip is less than have that front to back in 26”.

The lift plate is flat the dip is small enough to have never affected any project I’ve done.

I have 2, 3/4 sections of ply glued, sandwiched between 2, 1/4” layers of hdf glued, sandwiched between 2 layers of formica. The table is banded with Oak. The rig is a PC 7518 held by a Benchdog lift. All 3 have been together since 2003 in an unheated basement shop. The original unit was modified and built in 1997 from the plans in the April 1995 issue of “American Woodworker”, still have the issue. I originally had my 7539 attached to a phenolic plate. After 6 yrs of manual changes and pulling the 7539 out for jobsite work was a tremendous PITA so I broke down and changed over to the 7518 and benchdog.

-- I meant to do that!

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