Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Router table update..

My router table is coming along now. I took the time to put together all the drawers for the cabinet. I have four bit storage drawers and a wrench drawer that fit in the upper section. I also made three larger drawers that will serve as jig and other fixture storage. I haven't made this many drawers before, so I really had to pay attention to workflow and making sure that my procedures for ripping, crosscutting, and grooving were all set up so I don't spend my whole life resetting my table saw for all the different cuts.

Small drawer parts. Ready to go.
Assembled and ready for glue.
The good news was that I figured out how to cut everything with a minimum of problems. The bad news is that I found out my chop saw is out of square...so I'll have to adjust that later. I probably won't need it for the rest of this project, so I can deal with it when my router table is done.

I managed to save myself some money and I got to use up this sheet of masonite I had bought to make the top for my workshop cabinets. I needed a backer for the bottom of my bit drawers, and since I didn't want to buy a sheet of 1/4" plywood, I just went to my scrap sheet of masonite and cut the drawer bottoms out of that.

After putting together the small drawers, I went to work on the larger drawers. I built those using locking rabbet joinery for the drawer fronts, just like my other cabinet. Having practiced making them before, this time the process was much faster and I experienced a lot less headache, except of course for the fact that I made two of the same side for one of my drawers, so I had to sacrifice a little more plywood than I originally wanted to. In time, I'm going to get better at that so I don't waste more wood.

I got all the drawer slides installed and I also learned in a hurry that trying to install drawer slides in a very small space sucks. I could ask for a right angle drill, but I think if I have to make smaller drawers like that, I'll make my own runners out of wood. I think it'll save me the hassle of trying to fit my hand and drill in a space that's almost too small to fit.

Everything fits. I guess I do know how to measure.
Larger drawers clamped up.

All the drawers are done. Now on to the top.
With all the drawers installed, I can start laying out for the top. I got my switch and t-slot bit in the mail today, so I can start working on that tomorrow. Fitting the router plate is giving me fits because I really don't want to mess that up. I have a lot of MDF to work with, but I want this right the first time. I have to design the fence and get that put together too, and so that will probably take me to the end of the week.

I'm obviously not Norm, so getting this done in 2 days would have been asking a bit too much of my skills. Like my workbench, I've been learning tons about how to do this, and I can definitely say this worked out better than my bench did, and there are a lot of procedures I've learned along the way that really makes life easier.

If all goes well, I can probably assemble the top tomorrow and with some luck/hope, I can get things worked up and laid out properly. I have to work on the fence too, so I might start that first because I think that may work out better and quicker than laying out the top.