ShopNotes #100 2008-07-01

July 2008
Issue 100

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Table of Contents

Readers' Tips4

Rabbeting on the Router Table8

Perfect rabbets? You bet. Here's what you need to know to do it on the router table.

3 Solutions for Wax Protection10

The secret to protecting surfaces and making your shop tools work better is just a matter of choosing and using the right wax.

Router Insert Plates12

The insert plate you select may well determine how well your router table works. Learn the ins and outs of what makes a good insert plate.

You’ll find a variety of insert plates at most woodworking suppliers. The information for the two Veritas round plates is shown below:

The Secrets to Flat Stock16

Starting with flat stock is essential for successful woodworking. We'll show you how to do it right.

Ultimate Router Table18

This router table might just be the last one you'll ever need to build. It's loaded with storage, has a built-in dust collection system, and moves easily. Plus, the fence has a micro-adjust for "dialing in" accuracy.

  • Page 18: Online Extra - Cutting Diagram
    (Updated note, February 2009: The cutting diagram PDF has been replaced with a new version on The cutting diagram showing parts K, L, M, Z, and CC was not laid out correctly. If laid out as originally shown it would require a longer piece of MDF.
  • Page 18: Cutting Diagram
    (08/22/2012) Two corrections: (1) Parts O, P, Q, R, and S are listed as MDF in the Materials list and on the plans, but as hardwood on the cutting diagram. These parts should be shown as MDF on the cutting diagram. (2) Part V "Suppost Plate" is listed as hardwood in the Materials list, but as MDF on the cutting diagram. Part V in the Materials list should read "6 x 13 - 3/4 MDF"
  • Page 19: Materials List
    Part V "Support Plate" is listed as hardwood in the plans and Materials list, but as MDF on the online extra cutting diagram. Part V in the Materials list should read "6 x 13 - 3/4 MDF"

Online Extras

  • Ultimate Router Table
    A router table can be as simple as a flat plywood top clamped to your workbench with the router bolted to it. But a router table is such an important tool that it deserves a permanent place and a few more features.
  • Router Table Option: Door & Back
    Two simple pieces of MDF is all it takes to help tackle two issues that trouble router tables — dust and noise. Adding the back panel and door you see here is a straightforward upgrade to the ultimate router table and also gives it a cleaner look.
  • 6-step Router Plate Installation
    The biggest challenge to making any router tabletop is cutting an opening for the insert plate so that it fits perfectly. To answer that challenge when it came to building the ultimate router table, I used a foolproof method that doesn't require any tedious measuring or layout. Just a few common shop tools. The nice thing about this method is you can use it to create an opening for any size or type of plate.
  • Woodsmith Store
    Kreg Micro-Adjuster… 618033
    Kreg Mini-Trak.… 273732
    Kreg Miter Track… 273735

Laminate: Wilsonart “North Sea” (D90-60)

Paint: Benjamin-Moore Regal Eggshell (“Raspberry Truffle” 2080-10). The gray paint color is custom-tinted to match the laminate.

Shop Short Cuts28

Shop-tested tips and techniques to solve your woodworking problems.

Precision Mortising Table30

Take your mortising machine to the next level with this shop-built table. A dual sliding rod system allows for precise positioning and effortless mortising.

  • Page 34: Figure 3
    The steel rods should be 26" long, not 16 1/2" as they are originally printed.
  • Page 34: Materials and Supplies
    An additional piece of 72"-long steel rod will be needed, if ordered from Enco (the source listed in the magazine). Shorter lengths are available from McMaster-Carr although the cost will be higher.
  • Page 51: Sources
    Two items originally sourced from Enco have been discontinued. The items can be obtained from McMaster-Carr. Enco Item 240-0632 is a flat washer for a 3/4" bolt. They should be available from a hardware store, or from Mcmaster-Carr Item 91083A036. The other item is a Bronze Sleeve Bearing, Enco item 325-7516. It can be replaced with McMaster-Carr item 6391K259.

Note: Enco no longer carries two of the items originally sourced for this project. They can be obtained from McMaster-Carr:

Easy Shop-Made Dowels38

You may never need to buy dowels again. With this simple step-by-step process, you can make your own dowels in minutes.

Cordless Tool Station40

Keep your cordless drills, chargers, and other tools organized in this easy-to-build, wallmounted station. The handy drawer provides even more storage for all your accessories.

  • Rockler
    8″ Drawer Slides97809
  • Lee Valley
    8″ Drawer Slides… 02K42.08
  • Woodcraft
    Hook & Loop Strap834590

Creating Custom Tool Storage44

Protect your fine tools with a custom-fit, lined drawer insert. All it takes is an afternoon.

Rockler carries all the supplies you need for creating custom drawer inserts for your tools. If you’ve only got a few drawers you want to flock, you can use the Mini-Flocker applicator (see below). For larger projects, you might want to consider the Air-Assisted Flocking Gun. It works with your compressor for a smooth, even application.

  • Rockler:
    Mini-Flocker Applicator28035
    Air-Assisted Gun32222

You can also order flocking materials from DonJer Products. They have a variety of interesting colors and types from which to choose.

Dado Blade Essentials46

Get more from your table saw with a dado blade and a few simple tips.

Top-Notch Pocket Hole Jig48

Pocket hole joinery is quick and reliable. Learn how the Kreg K3 makes it even easier.

  • Rockler
    Kreg K3 Master System28212
  • Woodsmith Store
    Kreg K3 Master System618045

Q & A50

Scenes from the Shop52