Fold-Up Router Table

§ by on April 18th, 2008

You can sharpen your woodworking skills with helpful tips and techniques from the editors of Woodsmith and ShopNotes magazines. Get a FREE tip sent to your email address each week! Go to WoodworkingTips.com and sign up today.

Here’s last week’s tip from ShopNotes online editor Phil Huber:

My workshop shares space with the family car. So it’s important that all of my power tools be portable and take up as little space as possible. So I made the fold-up router table you see here.

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I made a simple router table top and attached it to a pair of 2×4’s with screws. Then, after removing the top of an adjustable clamping table, I mounted the router table to the clamping table stand, as shown in the left photo above. The table is firmly supported by the clamping table base.

The nice thing about the table is it can be raised and lowered to match the task at hand. Best of all, I can remove the router and quickly fold the table up to store it against the wall whenever it’s not in use (right photo).

If you’d like to see other router table plans, just go to PlansNOW.

Good Woodworking,

Phil Huber
Online Editor, ShopNotes

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Dowel Drilling Jig

§ by on April 8th, 2008

You can sharpen your woodworking skills with helpful tips and techniques from the editors of Woodsmith and ShopNotes magazines. Get a FREE tip sent to your email address each week! Go to WoodworkingTips.com and sign up today.Here’s last week’s tip from ShopNotes online editor Phil Huber:

Drilling a centered hole in a dowel can be a challenge. It’s hard to get the drill bit centered and keep the dowel from turning as the hole is drilled. To make it easier, I built the jig shown below.

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Build the jig by first drilling a hole the diameter of the dowel in a piece of hardwood. Then just cut a saw kerf through the hole from the end to make a clamp.

Using the jig is simple. Begin by centering the dowel under the bit. To do this, clamp a piece of scrap wood to the table and drill a hole to fit the dowel. Then change out the bit to the size needed.

Next, slip the dowel into the hole in the scrap wood. Then slip the clamping jig over the dowel and squeeze the kerf together with a small clamp. Now you can clamp the jig in place and drill the hole in the center of the dowel.

To learn more essential woodworking tips and techniques, just go to: http://www.plansnow.com/basics.html.

Good Woodworking,

Phil Huber
Online Editor, ShopNotes

Drill Press Table Upgrade

§ by on March 21st, 2008

You can sharpen your woodworking skills with helpful tips and techniques from the editors of Woodsmith and ShopNotes magazines. Get a FREE tip sent to your email address each week! Go to WoodworkingTips.com and sign up today.

Here’s last week’s tip from ShopNotes online editor Phil Huber:

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I wanted to add an auxiliary table and fence to my drill press. But I didn’t want to spend a lot of money. So I built the simple drill press table and fence with a replaceable insert you see in the photo above. The fence is adjustable and has a sliding stop.

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Table

20080313sn-2.jpgThe table is two layers of ¾″ plywood that are glued together. A dado on the top side at each end holds T-tracks for attaching the fence. Two bottom-mounted T-tracks attach the table to the drill press, as you can see in detail ‘b’ and the photo at right.

Fence

The fence is nothing more than a length of aluminum angle. A slotted hole at each end accepts a flange bolt from the table so you can quickly mount and adjust the fence to meet almost any drilling challenge.

Stop Block

To help position and hold the workpiece, I added a stop block to the fence. It’s simply a block of wood attached to an aluminum bracket. A knob and T-nut, are used for adjusting the block and securing it in position on the fence (detail ‘a’).

You can find even more ways to upgrade your power tools, just go to: http://plansnow.com/toolstandplans.html.

Good Woodworking,

Phil Huber
Online Editor, ShopNotes

Send for a preview issue of ShopNotes magazine

Micro-Adjust Your Router Table Fence

§ by on March 5th, 2008

You can sharpen your woodworking skills with helpful tips and techniques from the editors of Woodsmith and ShopNotes magazines. Get a FREE tip sent to your email address each week! Go to WoodworkingTips.com and sign up today.

Here’s last week’s tip from ShopNotes online editor Phil Huber:

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The router table in my shop gets lots of use. But it’s always difficut to make fine adjustments to the fence. So I built the micro-adjuster you see in the photo above using spare parts I had around the shop.

The adjuster is easy to build. Start by drilling and tapping a strip of ¼″ aluminum to accept a piece of threaded rod. And then bend the aluminum strip into an “L” shape.

Next, drill two holes in a hardwood adjusting block. One horizontal hole for the threaded rod and a vertical one for the hold-down. Then you can cut a dado at the bottom of the fence to hold the piece of L-shaped aluminum in place.

Assembly. Put the pieces together by slipping the threaded rod through the adjusting block and adding washers and locknuts, like you see in the drawing and detail below. This allows the aluminum strip attached to the fence to be moved forward and backward one thread at a time when you make fine fence adjustments.

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20080228sn-2.gifFence Adjustment. To use the micro-adjuster, you’ll first need to lock down the opposite end of the fence. Then lock down the micro-adjuster by tightening the knob on top of the adjusting block. Use the turning knob to adjust the fence to the desired position. Once the fence is located where you want it, lock down the other end of the fence. Then all that’s left is to turn on your router and you’re ready to go.

If you’d like even more great ideas for getting more from your router, go to: Router Tables at PlansNow.

Good Woodworking,

Phil Huber
Online Editor, ShopNotes

Send for a preview issue of ShopNotes magazine

Telescoping Drawer Gauge

§ by on February 21st, 2008

You can sharpen your woodworking skills with helpful tips and techniques from the editors of Woodsmith and ShopNotes magazines. Get a FREE tip sent to your email address each week! Go to WoodworkingTips.com and sign up today.

Here’s last week’s tip from ShopNotes online editor Phil Huber:

Measuring the width for a drawer bottom can be a challenge. I usually measure several times just to make sure I get it right.Then I made the simple drawer gauge shown in the photo below. Now, I don’t have to worry about the “numbers.” The gauge always shows me the exact distance.

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It’s made from two pieces of aluminum angle joined together by a small wood block (see end view below right). The telescoping arms are two pieces of flat aluminum bar stock set side by side. A knurled knob, pressed-in threaded insert, and a penny sets and adjusts the arms.

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20080214sn-1.gif It’s easy to use the gauge to set up your table saw for the cut. Just slide the arms until each one touches the bottom of the groove in the drawer sides. Then tighten the knob to secure the arms.

Next place the end of one arm against the blade and the other arm against your rip fence. Lock the fence in position and make the cut.
Good Woodworking,

Phil Huber
Online Editor, ShopNotes

Send for a preview issue of ShopNotes magazine

Small Parts Clamp

§ by on February 8th, 2008

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You can sharpen your woodworking skills with helpful tips and techniques from the editors of Woodsmith and ShopNotes magazines. Get a FREE tip sent to your email address each week! Go to WoodworkingTips.com and sign up today.

Here’s last week’s tip from ShopNotes online editor Phil Huber:

When gluing and clamping small parts together, it’s always a challenge to align large clamps to hold them in place as the glue dries. To make this job easier, I built the small parts clamp you see in the photo above.

The base is two pieces of ¾″ plywood glued together and trimmed to size. Two grooves in the base hold a pair of T-tracks, as shown in the drawing below.

Next, two pieces of hardwood serve as the stop block and clamping block. They are drilled to hold flange bolts and two sections of threaded rod, as the illustration shows below.

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Place a T-nut in each hole at the back edge of the stop block, slide a threaded rod through the holes in both of the blocks, and then screw them into the T-nuts, like you see in the side view below right. A little epoxy at the end of the rod will keep it from turning. Next, slide the four flange bolts in the T-track, slip the blocks over the bolts and add the washers and wing nuts. Finally, add the washers and thread the knobs on the rod.

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To use the clamp, loosen the wing nuts and place the parts to be clamped between the blocks. Position the front of the clamping block to extend slightly beyond the edge of the base so you can turn the knobs and secure the stop block in place. Finally, snug up the star knobs and tighten the wing nuts to lock the clamping block in place.

Good Woodworking,

Phil Huber

Online Editor, ShopNotes

Send for a preview issue of ShopNotes magazine

Pull-Out Storage Case

§ by on January 24th, 2008

20080117sn.jpgYou can sharpen your woodworking skills with helpful tips and techniques from the editors of Woodsmith and ShopNotes magazines. Get a FREE tip sent to your email address each week! Go to WoodworkingTips.com and sign up today.

Here’s last week’s tip from ShopNotes online editor Phil Huber:

I never seem to have enough storage space in my shop. This is especially the case when it comes to screws, fasteners, and other odds and ends. Things I need close at hand, but don’t use every day.

So, to store these and other small items, I built a pull-out storage case, like you see in the photo at right. The case is large enough to hold a couple of small plastic storage cabinets with lots of drawers (the kind you find at hardware stores and home centers). I also added a few shelves to store other items.

Since I wanted to be able to move the case, I placed it on wheels (see drawing at right). A handle attached to the side lets me simply pull it out to get to the items and then push it back out of the way again.20080117sn.gif

The case fit nicely against the wall next to my workbench. It worked so well that I built a couple more cases and rolled them next to one another. Now I have lots of storage in a space that would have gone to waste.

Good woodworking,
Phil Huber
Online Editor, ShopNotes

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2200 Grand Avenue, Des Moines, Iowa 50312

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Shop-Built Mallet by a ShopNotes Reader

§ by on September 7th, 2007

While I was vacationing near my hometown in Ohio in August, I received a phone call from a long-time family friend, Dave Corwin, from Delaware, Ohio. He and my dad are friends with a history spanning several decades. When I married, our first home was across the street from Dave’s, so we became friends as well as neighbors. The best part was, he was a fellow woodworker. There were three of us woodworkers on the block, so we could often be found in each other’s shop on any given day sipping a cup of coffee and telling a story or two.

Dave called to tell me that he made a Shop-Built Mallet we featured in ShopNotes 95. He said he really enjoyed the article and was especially tickled and surprised when I told him I wrote it. He said he had a little trouble planing the resawn stock to thickness. Here’s what Dave said about the project:

“The mallet was fun to make and was a challenging project. One problem that I encountered was that the double faced tape did not work out very well because it continually got saw dust in it. So, what I did was put a ¾” board on the planer table and ran the thin pieces through on top of this board. That seemed to work out well.”

Dave also commented that he really thought the simple resaw pivot block for the band saw was a great idea. He built one and used it for this project.

Thanks for sharing, Dave.

Inside ShopNotes No. 93

§ by on April 2nd, 2007

ShopNotes 93 Cover.pngEvery issue of ShopNotes is packed full of projects, informative articles, and tips to make your shop time more enjoyable. This issue is no exception. Inside, you’ll find:

Best-Built Jigs and Fixtures: Dovetail Jig Workcenter
This workcenter is a handy addition to any shop. It’s loaded with features that make using your dovetail jig more enjoyable. There’s plenty of storage inside for your dovetail jig and accessories. And we’ve built in some features to make routing dovetails more accurate.

Weekend Workshop: Table Saw Outfeed Support
Ripping long pieces on the table saw can be a struggle. This easy-to-build outfeed support gives you an extra hand when you need it — and stores easily when you don’t.

Storage Solutions: 5 Plywood Shop Projects
It won’t take a lot of time, effort, or material to improve your shop with these handy plywood projects. Each one can be built from a single sheet of inexpensive plywood.

Plus, in Router Workshop, we’ll show you our Top 10 Hand-Held Router Accessories that will help you get more out of your hand-held router.

And, as always, you’ll find lots of other informative pages inside this issue of ShopNotes. Look for it on the newsstands or in your mailbox.

Top 5 Most Influential Woodworkers

§ by on March 12th, 2007

Garrett French is at it again over at the ToolCrib.com blog. He’s compiled a list of the “5 Most Influential Woodworkers” based on input from folks at a couple of forums, including the WoodNet forum. Like any list, it may be more interesting for who was left off, than who was included. I’d like to mention a couple of people who weren’t on the list, but in my opinion, should be placed right near the top.

Don Peschke and Paul Roman.

If those two names aren’t so familiar to you, it’s because they’ve both worked more behind the scenes as the pioneering editors and publishers of Woodsmith and Fine Woodworking magazines, respectively. Each has probably influenced more people to get into the shop and actually build something than just about anyone else on Garrett’s list.

Neither Don nor Paul’s name is as familiar perhaps as Norm Abram, but to me their magazines were groundbreaking. Woodsmith, published by August Home Publishing (they also put out ShopNotes, Workbench, Garden Gate, and Cuisine at home), is unique in that it doesn’t just show you a pretty project, it helps you build the project with detailed step-by-step instructions and clear, concise drawings and photos. I remember the first time I picked up Woodsmith magazine, my very first thought was “I can do that!”

(As you may know, Don owns the company I work for, so this is not a completely unbiased post! But the fact is, I’ve been an editor for Woodsmith for 7 years, but I’ve been reading the magazine for over twenty-five years.)

Paul Roman, and his wife Jan, started Fine Woodworking in 1975 and it eventually expanded into a publishing empire that includes magazines for woodworking, home building, cooking, and gardening. Paul’s goal was to have a woodworking magazine that not only informed, but also inspired its readers. There’s no arguing with that, it’s an awesome magazine.

I suppose we’ll always be more influenced by TV personalities. And this is not a knock on Norm, but I’d rather read about woodworking and then go do it myself, than watch it being done on TV anyday.

If you’d like to subscribe to Woodsmith to find out exactly what I mean, click here.