Replacing the Threaded

Replacing the Hitachi MI2V's height-stop rod with a H-lnch-diameter rod with 16 threads per Inch (tpi) yields several benefits.

The most obvious, perhaps, is that adjustments can be parsed in increments that are familiar to American woodworkers—16ths, 32nds, even 64ths. Sixteen tpi breaks down to Me inch per full revolution. Four turns thus is inch, while a quarter-turn is %a inch.

But the &-inch rod is also heavier than the Hitachi's stock 6-milllmeter rod, which makes it less apt to flex. And if you replace the rod, you can use a longer piece, which helps align your router crank and keep it from wobbling.

Can you replace the rods on other routers? Some you can, yes, but not all. You have to evaluate the rod that's on your router and decide whether it can be replaced and whether it should be replaced.

On the Hitachi, replacement is a matter of drilling out and retapping the hole for the rod in the router base. The details of this process are laid out in the feature "Cutting Threads" in the appendix. Separate the motor from the base to do this. Then the yoke on the motor housing must be opened up to accommodate the larger-diameter rod. You can do this easily with a rattail file. The yoke is formed of a soft, easily filed material that's often called "pot metal."

Turn a couple of jam nuts onto the new rod, then turn it into the hole in the base. Turn the nuts down the rod. Jam the first against the base and the second against the first. Reinstall the motor on the base. Turn your new router crank on the rod, and you are ready to hang the machine in your router table.

The difference is obvious. The Hitachi router's stock 6-millimeter rod is clearly smaller than a inch rod. The latter rod makes it easier to adjust bit extension in predictable increments.

Installing the new rod is a matter of drilling out and retapping the mounting hole in the router's base. Some models have a mounting hole that extends all the way through the base, so you can work from the bottom, as shown. The "pot metal" used for most bases is very soft; be gentle. I broke out a piece of it getting the tap started.

Epoxy the nut into the column. Mix a very small amount of household epoxy according to the directions on the packaging. Dab it on selected flats of the nut, as shown, and thrust the nut into the column. Be discreet. If you apply too much epoxy. it will well into areas where you don't want it, botching the job.

7. Chamfer or turn the column. On mosi routers, the height-stop rod is nestled quite close to the router motor. Obviously, a 1'/«-inch-square column will not rotate-in such close quarters, so it must be trimmed down.

Rip the column down to about 1 Inch square, or smaller if it is possible. Reduce the section further by chamfering or rounding-over the edges.

Finally, crosscut the column to the final length. You may want to square the end of the column that the nut fits into, but be sure you don't inadvertently cut off the recess for the nut that you worked so diligently to create.

8. Make the crank. Use a piece of the column stock. Lay out the shape, as shown in Router Crank Layouts. Saw the crank to shape on the band saw. and sand the edges. If you want, you can chamfer or round-over the edges.

Drill the holes, a through hole for the crank handle, a stopped hole for the column. Determine the diameter of the hole for the column by measuring the column.

I used a red plastic knob for a handle. The particular knob 1 selected has a /i(»-inch-deep insert. A 1 \«-inch-long mounting bolt thus provides 4o of end-to-end play, contributing to the handle's freedom of movement.

9. Attach the crank to the column. Check the fit of the column in the hole. If necessary, sand down the column end so it will fit in the hole. Apply glue to the stopped hole in the plate, and insert the column.

10. Epoxy the nut in place. Leave the nut on the rod. Apply a small amount of epoxy to the nut. then slide the rod and nut home. (The rod helps keep the nut aligned while the epoxy sets.) I left the nut protruding just a skosh, so the nut and not the wooden column would rub on the yoke. (Actually, rather than have metal contacting metal. 1 used a nylon washer between the column's nut and the yoke.)

Be discreet in applying the epoxy. If you use too much or put it in the wrong placcs. the excess can ooze into the channel for the rod. which will transform the piece into scrap.

Alter the epoxy dries, remove the rod from the nut and reinstall it on the router. Then install the crank on the router.

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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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