Swinging on a Template Guide

Worried about your slotting jig drifting off the fence while you're cutting slots? A momentary lapse in concentration, a slightly errant push can produce a skewed slot. A botched job.

Here's a way to eliminate the problem: Modify the jig to work in conjunction with a template guide bushing. Then you can eliminate the fence entirely. The jig will swivel around the guide's collar but will always be in the correct alignment with the cutter.

Moreover, this approach eliminates the need to add fences to die base when you use the jig for hand-held router work.

Build the jig following the directions in "Making the Jig" on page 330. After cutting both the cutting and key slots, line up the fence so the cut resides in the cutting slot. Set the jig aside, and change bits in the router. Pick the template guide you'll use with the jig, and measure the outside diameter of its collar. The bit you need to use now is a straight that matches that measurement. Chuck that bit in the router and set the depth of cut to equal the height of the collar.

Now enlarge the cutting slot only. Butt the jig against the fence, tip it back, and start the router. Plunge the jig. feed it through the cut. then lift the back end of the jig off the cutter. Switch off the router.

The new slot should accommodate

the guide collar without interfering with the cutting of slots for your chosen keys.

To use this jig, install the template guide in the mounting plate. Chuck the correct bit in the router. Set the jig over the template, and adjust the height of the cutter. Cuts arc made just as if you were using the fence.

You'll notice, however, that die template guide provides positive stops at the extremes of a cutting stroke. You never have to wonder whether the cutter is housed in the work, or whether it's free of the work and you're extending the sbt in the base. Pull the jig toward you until it stops. Push it away from you until it stops. No doubts.

With ihe slotting jig's movement regulated by the template guide,you need never worry about the jig—and the work it carries—drifting away from a fence and boogering both the jig and the work. The template guide allows the jig to swivel—giving you freedom of motion—without compromising the cut placement.

To slot the box or drawer, set it in the jig and butt it against the key. Push and pull the jig, cutting the first slot. Lift the box to slip this first slot over the jig's key. Push and pull again, cutting the second slot. Keep going until the comer is done. Switch corners and keep at it until the box is done.

slide the jig so the cutter is housed in one of the supports. Slide the fence against the edge of the jig's base and clamp it. The jig should slide back and forth along the fence without catching on the bit as it passes through the slots in the supports.

To cut the slots, you rest the assembled box in the jig, with one edge butted against the key. With the router switched on, push and pull the jig, cutting the first slot. Lift the work slightly, shift it toward the key. and lower it again into the jig.

dropping the cut over the key. Make another cut, lift and shift the work, and make a third cut.

You just repeat this process over and over until the job is done.

In the ideal situation, one of your preestablished spacings will suit the work at hand. But you may need to make the first cut without the key in place, so you can alter the space from the work's edge to the first key. If this is ihe case, you can use carpet tape to stick a temporary stop in the jig for the first cut. I'd suggest making that Grst cut on all four comers of the box before pulling out the temporary stop and reinserting the key to finish out the job.

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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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