T":n If you don't have ' ■p' a trammel and want to cut a small hole or disc, drill a small hole in the router baseplate and drop it onto a headless nail driven partway into the workpiece. Doing so makes the base a very short-armed trammel.

Source Lee Valley, (800) 8718158, 2-ln. four-arm knob, #00M55.40, $2 ea.


3/4" plywood

Handgrip copied from hand plane

Coping Sled

End-grain milling can be difficult. The stock tends to walk, angling forward or backward instead of staying at right angles to the fence. In addition, tire leading corner can dip into the bit opening in the fence.

A coping sled solves these problems. It holds a rail securely during a cut and backs the cut to protect against tearout. The sled doesn't rely on a miter-gauge groove, and it is large enough to bridge the opening in the fence. The comfortable handle provides a sure grip on the sled and keeps your hands out of harm's way.

The router bit mills the sled's fence. This isn't a problem as long as you use die same sled with the same bit and height ever)' time. In fact, it helps set the bit height. Because these sleds are easily made from materials in your scrap bin, you could have a number of sleds on hand for various bits. An alternative is to install a strip of scrap wood—3/4-in. square pine would work nicely—between the fence and the workpiece and let the router chew it up. Or simply replace or rotate the 3/4-in. plywood fence.

To use the jig, make sure your fence is set flush with the cutter bearing. Position the workpiece on the sled. For incremental cuts, hold the piece slighdy back from the edge of the sled for the first cut. Then reposition the piece flush with the sled base. Hold the sled firmly against the fence while you make the cut.

Use 1/2-in. stock for the base so the toggle clamp's force won't distort it. Make the handle from doubled up 1/2-in. birch multi-ply or from maple. If you use maple, pay attention to the grain direction; it should move diagonally across the handle profile to minimize short-grain weaknesses. Trace the profile of a bench plane handle onto the handle blank. Cut out the handle on the band-saw and file and sand it smooth. Install die handle at an angle so that during operation the pressure is naturally applied into the fence as well as down on the sled.

Apply a thin coat of paste wax or shoe polish to the bottom of the sled. Let it dry and then buff it to a high shine. This will virtually eliminate friction between the sled and the tabletop.

Source Lee Valley, (800) 871-8158, DeStaco toggle clamp, #88F05.01, $17.

3/4" plywood

Handgrip copied from hand plane

Bill Hylton has been writing about woodworking for more than 20 years. All the jigs in this story are taken from his newly revised book, Woodworking with the Router. He has written dozens of books on the topic, including the best-selling Router Magic and Illustrated Cabinetmaking.

Source Woodworking with the Router, paperback, $20; hardcover, $30. Router Magic, paperback, $19

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A simple template guarantees a perfect fit

Hi itting a countertop between two side walls and a back wall is one of the jjs most challenging installations you will ever face. Experienced cabinetmakers can do this with ease by marking and scribing straight to the countertop, but they have years of experience. I take a more roundabout approach, but it's virtually goof-proof.

I prefer to make a template of the opening and rout my top to match. This prevents trimming too much from any side, which would create a gap that can't easily be repaired. I'll show you a simple method for making this template using a kitchen desktop that butts against a cabinet, a side wall and a back wall as an example.' I installed this desktop with no backsplash. If you intend to install a backsplash, you don't need a precise scribe on the back edge.


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Woodworking Tools and Installation Tips

Woodworking Tools and Installation Tips

There are a lot of things that either needs to be repaired, or put together when youre a homeowner. If youre a new homeowner, and have just gotten out of apartment style living, you might want to take this list with you to the hardware store. From remolding jobs to putting together furniture you can use these 5 power tools to get your stuff together. Dont forget too that youll need a few extra tools for other jobs around the house.

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