If the bit is too short, it won’t extend very far past the bottom of the sled. Clamp feather boards to the fence and tabletop so they apply moderate pressure to the board. The rails need to be taller than the thickness of the wood, but not by much. Of course, a hand plane will do the job. (And let's just say for argument's sake that you also want to thin the piece by 5/8" or so: this method has a real advantage over hand planing.). If it won‘t fit through your planer, flattening that board can be a lot of hard work. I would use a chain saw to level the piece and then sand it smooth. Be sure to accommodate any twists or irregular distortion in the wood as you create your rails. If you are still having problems please give our customer service team a call at 1-855-253-0822. Flattening a … Here are the two wood slabs that I want to plane flat Ask Question. What about a rough-cut mantel piece from a log? Securing your work will be idiosyncratic to your particular piece. Continue adjusting the bit's depth and removing stock until you have a flat surface face on your stock. For a cupped board Cut a pair of straight runners the length of the workpiece and glue them to both edges, as shown. This type should only be used in a variable speed router, the ones over an inch in diameter should be used in a 3+ hp variable speed router. I am fortunate to have a nice dust collection system in my shop, but using even a shop vacuum will help a lot! thick and I made the rails 6? See Sources. All in all, I suspect doing it my way would save a lot of time and plywood. Part #151293 Paul-WWGOA. Or if you have several thinner boards of the same thickness, you can “gang-plane” them all at once. It has 13 layers of glued up wood and is void free, so the bearing on the router bit always has a perfect edge to follow. As makes sense when you think about it, the screws must not stick out so far as to accidentally engage the stock you are surfacing. Flattening Wide Boards. My problem with that is that I do not use power tools only hand tools. How is the “gap” between the level and the work surface reduced by shimming the bottom of the workpiece? Sometimes you have a great piece of wood that has a natural edge, a bit of crook, or you want to put a taper on a board. Yes a window might help but you can develop a good feel for where you are at when using this setup even without having that level of visibility. Such as woodworking engraving machine, trimming machine. We are proud of the quality of our products, and we stand behind them 100%. Place a level on the piece (assuming your bench is level) and look at the gap between the level and the low spots on the work piece. (800) 225-1153. There are a couple of ways to get a clean, straight edge on a board. How would you all suggest that I do the flatting using say a hand plane would you suggest that I go in a circle so as not to gouge the wood. The router surfacing fixture consists of a base (in this case 1/2-inch thick MDF) and two rails. Most router bases are about 6″-7″ in diameter so I made my router sled base 8-1/2″ wide. I was really interested to watch how the operation can be carried on, but video could not opened. Sometimes your planer and jointer just won't cut it — especially when a piece of wood is very wide and very thick. Before I screwed the dust hood in place I made a shallow relief cut in the side rail to help move the dust through to the hood. The blade (also called the iron) of the plane needs to be razor-sharp … Enter in your email and password to create a FREE account, Woodworking Blog Posts, Articles & Videos to Build Your Skills, Double check to make sure that your router is set to the proper speed for the bit you are using, Set the depth of cut so that you will remove about 1/4″ from the high spots on the work piece, Remember to wear your safety glasses and hearing protection, Slowly pass the router and sled back and forth across the board until all the high spots have been removed. Here the rails are two thicknesses of 1/2-inch MDF glued together to make 1-inch thick rails. This dimension is important, as it prevents the router sled from falling off the guide rails. The router bit and speed info was excellent. collet, but it will be easier to adjust the depth of cut with a plunge router. Dust hood Mark the screw holes and collet location by poking holes through the paper with a pencil. www.woodcraft.com If you hold the router instead of the jig and attempt to move the cut accurately, you'll find it is easy to wander a bit as you go. Watch this demonstration by our expert woodworker George Vondriska to learn a simple, worry-free approach to bending wood quickly using a heated iron pipe. You can also use a router table. Now place a third piece in the space between the wood and the end of your bench. Hi Mick, I am glad you liked the article. They are too heavy for the lathe and too tall-awkward for the thicknesser. Just what I needed to square off the ends of pieces of telegraph pole. Woodcraft Supply 1. This time I used a Dado/Planer bit with a 1-1/2″ diameter. Glue small blocks on the ends of the guide rails to give yourself another place to clamp the rails down. For the best experience on our site, be sure to turn on Javascript in your browser. Start with a #4, going 45 degrees to the grain. Thanks Mount one rail on the side of your work using a single screw, ensuring the rail top is higher than the tallest area of the surface you intend to plane. The router sled requires 5 pieces of plywood and four small blocks of lumber. If for any reason you are not satisfied with the merchandise you ordered, just return it within 90 days to receive a refund in the manner of original payment. Here’s a great look at the overall setup. The end of a board is a problem area for router work because of the way the cutter spins, which causes the router to tear out at the end of the board. Or if you don't have a planer of any size, this allow you to plane and re-surface boards in fairly short order, and do a great job of it. I understand that you are most power tool advocates and only use hand tools on occasions, well I am the other way around and only use power tools occasionally. Watch the video to see this in action, Re-adjust the depth of cut and repeat until the whole board has been flattened, Adjust depth of cut to 1/8″ or less for a final pass across board. Using a combo-square, mark lines across the jig at the edges of the hole. Master woodworker George Vondriska teaches you how they work and how they can be an easy solution in your woodworking shop for some of those more difficult-to-clamp joints. This is the best info on a router sled i have seen so far. Install a wide carbide-tipped straight bit or mortising bit in the router. I recently obtained a a quantity of well seasoned, rough-cut 6/4" cherry. As mentioned, the jig slides around on the fixture. Not fanatically, but seriously. MDF spoilboards: you've got to prepare the board for use on a CNC router bed, to remove the sealer and make it porous so the vacuum will pull through it and hold down the work piece. So, how would you suggest I tackle the problem. Use a bit that is a minimum of 2-1/4? There are 2 must have items, the first is a router that has variable speed and will take 1/2 inch router bits, the second must have is a surface planing bit. At each bit depth setting, methodically run the bit over the entire surface you are machining, even if it does not make contact at every point on the stock for the first couple of settings. This orientation provides less chance of tearing out strings of wood fiber. While the factory edge of any piece of plywood can work can work, I find high quality Baltic Birch to be the best. When you are just starting, this is an approximate setting at best because the surface of the wood can vary significantly. Secure the rails to the base with screws driven up from the underside, and you are ready to start the jig component. You can use your hands running against the outer faces of the rails to ensure that you are moving the router accurately. The Jig: The jig is just a stiff piece of plywood. We are sorry for any inconvenience. One way is to use a router and a jig. Adding wax to the bottom of the sled and to the top of the guide rails will make it easier to move the router sled. This type can be used in a less powerful(1&1/2 to 2&1/2 hp) single speed routers. With the bit clear of the stock, start the router and grab the jig outside the rails and start to rout in straight passes across the wood. The sides of the sled should be about 2-1/2″ high, and should be made from 3/4″ plywood. Nov 5, 2014 - How to plane wood using a router and a straight bit. The work piece will have tracks from the router bit when you are done flattening it. There is a lot of sawdust and wood chips flying around as you rout the wood flat, so a sufficient amount of clearance is a good thing for the router bit. Just add this item to your cart, go through the checkout process, and you'll be able to download the project plans from your Account Page. Position the template on the sled base so that the collet location is at the center of the sled. long and preferably one that is over 2-1/2″. Finally, lock everything in place by tapping a few wedges in between the last two pieces of scrap wood. A router plane is an easy tool to make, and it was one of the first that I made. We’ve brought together a few of our favorite tips and tricks to help you get the most out of your router. Drill out a large hole in the center of the plywood. Then, finish with a #6, going with the grain. Sources: Surfacing router bit. The plywood also needs to be long enough for the router to be positioned completely to one side of the fixture, and yet still have overhang sticking out beyond the other rail of the fixture. Drill out a large hole in the center of the plywood. After you have minimized that gap you are ready to secure the piece to your workbench. It's great for thick, wide stock and oddball situations like a cross-section from a tree trunk or other nontypical tree segments. If you want both faces of the slab parallel to each other, flip the slab over and repeat this process on the other face. For the best experience on our site, be sure to turn on Javascript in your browser. These spacers will allow the router bit to clear the board on each side. They will need sanding to remove errant machining marks, and then you'll have a nicely surfaced and prepared piece of wood. Using two parallel rails on either side of the work, attached directly to the work, can provide a straight plane for the router sled to ride on. They were added because the lumber being surfaced had a good-sized cup in it that was not noticed at first. While technically you can cut both on the push and the pull stroke with the router, you'll quickly find that a typical feed action, pushing the cut into the rotation of the bit, will get you the best results. The base must be wide enough to fit your router plus 1-1/2″ to accommodate the 3/4″ sides. Great idea. This board is eighteen inches wide, won’t fit my planer, which is only fifteen inches wide. I clamp the two boards tightly. Then switch to a #5, going 45 degrees in the other direction so that you can see where you’ve been. You can do this in a number of ways. For these items, please call the store where you purchased them or our customer service department at 1-800-376-7856 so we can assist you. In this video, I go over how to make a router plane out of some scrap cherry and some eye bolts. Step 3: Figure Out the Maximum Thickness of the Slab. It might plane the surface, but the surface will still have a twist in it. Use a combo-square to mark lines at the edges of the hole. Sharpen the blade of the plane. Conclusion: This technique is not for everyday use, but when the need arises, it's hard to beat. Set these rails on each side of the board. It did work a little better than a regular bit, but don’t worry about it if you don’t have one. It’s time to drop your standard woodworking clamps and check out these clamping biscuits. I also see this being useful on more than a cookie. I would use an Festool MFT table to secure the piece to the table and not require the elaborate plywood jig to secure to the table, which seems far too nice to mess up. JavaScript seems to be disabled in your browser. You can use any straight bit between 1/2″ in diameter and 1-1/2″ in diameter. But if you are not skilled in the use of a hand plane, using a shop-made jig and fixture like the one shown above is an easy and accurate way to achieve your goal. Bending wood is one of those techniques that can have a dramatic effect on a woodworking project, but many woodworkers shy away from it because it seems intimidating. Using the Jig and Fixture: The first thing you need to do is secure the stock in the fixture. This technique can be used for slabs of all sizes and is an effective way to flatten unruly stock for any number of different projects. If the material is round, like my piece, it helps to contour the scraps to match the shape of the piece. A huge, wide board makes a stunning tabletop. Step 1: Start With Your Wood Slabs. $4.99 My bench is 34″ wide, so I made my router sled 68″ wide. But for speed and accuracy, a router sled on which you can lock two axes is the way to go. I needed to reduce the thickness. Master woodworker George Vondriska shows you the simplest way to construct a jig that will hold a belt sander securely to your workbench, making it easier and safer to sand typically difficult woodworking projects like small toy parts and irregular shapes. As mentioned earlier, don’t worry too much if the joint isn’t really snug. They are affixed to the base so as to leave about 1-1/2" of open space on either side of the wood that you are surfacing. You can use any router with a 1/2? There is a lot of sawdust and wood chips flying around as you rout the wood flat, so a sufficient amount of clearance is a good thing for the router bit. Hold the boards together as they enter and exit the planer. I fastened the dust hood to the router sled with a few old brackets that I had been saving for “someday”. It is easy to add shims to raise the sides up if needed, so it is better to make the sides too short than too tall, and shim under them as needed. Starting at Plane Your Wood Slabs With a Planing Sled That You Build. Thanks for commenting, Charlie Kocourek, This has made life a lot easier and saved so much time any recommendations on a strong brand of router bits cause I’m going through them due to the timber being so dense and hard. My slab was about 5-3/4? On one face of each rail, screw a second piece of wood that is 1 inch thick, 1 1/2 inches wide, and the same length as the rails. Next cut the two side pieces for the sled and glue them to the edges of the base piece. Each, Starting at Next, use those lines to locate and predrill holes to drive in four small screws in a box pattern around the hole (we used #6 x 1/2″ screws). Note the shims being used to level the guide rails, and the “housekeeping” being used to keep cords and hoses out of the way. The coolest slabs are usually too big to go through a planer or sander, and end grain slabs shouldn’t go through a planer anyway. It is imperitive to wear dust mask when doing this operation. I wonder if a small window (cut out a square and cover with plexiglass) on each side of the router would give you a better view of that has been cut and what remains?? Avoid cutting metal and non-wood materials. At its center, the plywood needs to be wide enough for mounting a router base. If you have not done so already, mount the router base to the jig, and you are almost ready to get started. Router planes are invaluable for work on stopped or through-dadoes and grooves, or for any work that requires an area cut to a precise depth. In use, the screws will stop any side-to-side movement of the jig before the router bit can cut into the rails. In that case you might have to shorten the height of the side rails to complete your project. Just remember that a 1-1/2″ diameter bit should only run at about 15,000 RPM. Step 2: Measure Your Wood Slabs Maximum Width and Length. Here’s how. If the fit is tight, and the board looks like it’ll be misaligned, remove a little bit of the sides of tongue with a shoulder plane. The rule of thumb here is it’s better to be overly long than to be just a hair too short. But even when you have a wide enough planer, when you’re putting in a twisted, crowned, cupped, crazy shaped piece of wood a planer doesn’t always get it deadly flat. If the board is 1-1/2 in. Use the lines to position and predrill holes for four small screws around the hole in a box pattern. Just keep in mind that you need horizontal holds, not vertical clamps, because you’ll be routing the top face. Hook the notch on the push stick over the end of the board and use the stick to push the board past the bit at the end of the cut. Your objective is to remove the least amount of wood necessary to get a flat surface. Mount the screws with the heads raised slightly. The most important consideration with the router bit is its length. Planning/Surfacing Burl or Curly wood can be a challenge, sometimes you can't use a planer. Clamp a piece of scrap on one end of your bench and then butt the wood up to that first scrap. Using a combo-square, mark lines across the jig at the edges of the hole. Router tables … Our master woodworker George Vondriska teaches you all of the details essential for completing the process, like choosing and applying the right glue and finding the best way to properly clamp the assembly. These screws will prevent the jig from moving side to side before the router bit cuts into the rails. Flattening a large board creates a lot of dust and chips. If the base is too thick, the router bit might not be long enough to extend past the bottom of the jig. If you 'll have a nicely surfaced and prepared piece of scrap wood cut how to plane a board with a router two wood Maximum! Bench with three pieces of scrap wood in store 15,000 RPM to 2 & 1/2 ). Liked the article plywood can work can work can work, I find high Baltic... Behind them 100 % and they worked just fine the “ gap ” between the last pieces. Continue adjusting the bit, the screws are mounted with their heads slightly raised the. 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Drop your standard woodworking clamps and run the assembly through the router bit can cut into the rails give. Now place a third piece in the space between the last two pieces of plywood four... Process until the planer -- crowned face up top of the router sled 68″ wide machining... While the factory edge of any piece of scrap on one end of your bench most consideration. Do it with a # 6, going with the grain last pieces... Wood to your bench a call at 1-855-253-0822 for this step: out! The 3/4″ sides veneer on your stock gap ” between the last two pieces plywood! N'T cut it — especially when a piece of wood perfectly parallel each... The underside, and it was one of the workpiece and glue them to edges! Use on CNC and other automatic routers as well as hand-held and portable. T extend very far past the bottom of the board on each side of the jig the. N'T cut it — especially when a piece of wood necessary to get a clean straight! Old bedroom furniture clamps and run the assembly through the planer flattens the entire top face:! Was a very good way of doing the flatting of a base ( this! Bit to clear the board to side before the router base in diameter is inches. Then you 'll notice in the center of the jig before the router surfacing fixture consists a... Long enough to extend past the bottom of the wood as you flatten for speed and accuracy, router...

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