Universal Router Mounting Plate

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Work from scratch to make yourself a mounting plate that's fitted precisely to your router and router table.

Universal Router Base Plate

Attach the router directly to a piece of plywood. That used to be the typical approach to creating a router table, and it's one that works. Not as well as other, more contemporary approaches. But it works.

Nowadays, of course, the most common way to mount j router in a table is with a mounting plate, which is little more than an oversized baseplate. A rabbeted opening is cut through the tabletop. The opening is big enough to allow die router to drop through, but the plate is caught and supported by the rabbet. The plate ends up flush with the tabletop. The weight of the router keeps the plate in position. A proper fit means there's no sideplay.so the plate doesn't shimmy around in the hole. Because the plate is separate from the table and not fastened down, it—and the router—can be easily removed from the tabletop.

What an improvement over the old approach! You can pop the router out to change bits. And because the plate is ptobablv less than half the thickness of a plywood tabletop, uiu can wring greater depth of cut from your router.

Obviously, the plate from which the router hangs is a critical component. It has to be flat so that your cuts arc consistent. It has to be strong enough to support the router. And because we're all on some kind of budget, it can't come loo dear.

You can buy a mounting plate, of course. Commercial mounting plates abound. Most bit sellers have them in their catalogs, as do full-line tool dealers. These plates are not bad, generally.

But my attitude is: Why buy a mounting plate if you can make one? Especially if you are a hobby woodworker, making a mounting plate can introduce you to techniques and procedures that will enhance your "real "woodworking. And it can give you something you probably don't get enough of: practice. Moreover, working from scratch will give you a mounting plate that's fitted precisely to your router; the bit opening will be centered on the bit axis, and that's essential. It will give you a mounting plate that precisely fits the tabletop.

In the following few pages. I'll show you. step by step, how to make a mounting plate. You can make it as big or as small as you like, from whatever (appropriate) material you choose, attach whatever router you have, and make the bit opening as big or small as you desire. I'll also explain how to use the mounting plate to cut the tabletop opening for it.

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universal mounting plate layout

Mounting-screw holes countersunk

H"-thick acrylic, polycarbonate, or phenolic plastic

Mounting-screw holes countersunk

H"-thick acrylic, polycarbonate, or phenolic plastic

Starting-pin hole

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Wood Working for Amateur Craftsman

Wood Working for Amateur Craftsman

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