Moderators: Random Orbital Bob, nev, CHJ, Noel, Charley

By Jake
What do you have to work with - for instance, do you have a workmate?

If so that could be the base for a router table which while crude would be better than the plastic type you linked to.

If not the cheapos are about a tenner. Then you need a bit of plywood/mdf/whatever for a top, some battens screwed and glued on the bottom for the workmate to grip on. Either buy a router plate or just fasten the router directly to the plywood. A stick of wood for a fence with a couple of cramps.

That's the most basic version to get you started anyway - saves money and will be better to use (the table surface area is an important factor in ease of use, the little plastic things are too small).
By would not
Wasn't having a pop at your gender, just making an observation that a 2" peg won't fit into a 1" hole - unless you've got a big hammer.

What are you making that you need a router table? You'll find that someone on here who lives close by maybe able to let you use there table if it's just a one off, better to save your cash and get something of better quality than buying a cheapo table that you'll struggle with and probably throw to the back of the garage in frustration
By L Harding
well that all got a bit exciting!!! :shock:

Also didnt really give a thought to whether it was a male or female posting
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By Steve Maskery
I started to reply and got sidetracked before hitting the Post icon.
1. It never occurred to me that you weren't a bloke, and it it doesn't make any difference now that I know you aren't. Last time I made anything I used only my brain and hands, no other part of my anatomy.

2. There is no such thing as a "Standard" router. Different manufacturers have different sized bases. Different shapes even, and fixing holes that differ in position. That is the problem.

However, routers do take a range of "Standard" cutters. They all have a shank diameter of a)6mm (not common in the UK), b)1/4", c)8mm, or d)1/2". Not all routers will accommodate all sizes, and even if they do, you need the right collet for the job. So even if you have a 1/2" router, you will need an 8mm collet (which will be specific to that manufacturer) to hold a cutter with an 8mm shank.

3. Few ready-made router tables are any good. I mean very few. As in I've Yet To Find One. Most of us start with a piece of MDF mounted in a workmate with a router plate in it. Axminster, Rutland and several others sell the Rousseau plate. It's cheap enough but not flat (deliberately) and plastic. I had one and wouldn't recommend it.

Tilgear sell a rather better aluminium one. It has a very slightly smaller aperture, which means I can no longer use my raised panel bit, so although I use this plate 99% of the time, I hang on to my Rousseau plate for that cutter.

If I ever replace it, I'll go for the Woodpecker, sold in the UK by Woodworkers' Workshop. More than twice the price though.

Plenty of table designs on the Net, but if you are serious about WW and have the space, build Norm's. Excellent plans, a tenner, from Brimarc.

And Welcome.
By Anaria
Jake wrote:What do you have to work with - for instance, do you have a workmate?

I do have a workmate and an oak workbench but I would rather not start cutting holes in that. Sounds like your suggestion with the workmate might work, at least for the time being.

would not wrote:Wasn't having a pop at your gender ... - unless you've got a big hammer

I apologise. I thought you were suggesting that I didn't know that 177mm was larger than 155mm - don't have to be a rocket scientist and all. Like I said I get a bit tired of ppl assuming that because I am a woman I should be washing pans instead of swinging a hammer. And yes, I have a sledge hammer also. Is that big enough? :roll: I am smiling by the way!

I am starting to make guitars and need the occasional use of a table to route a 10mm x 10mm channel in a block of mahogany that will eventually become the neck of the guitar. This does need to be quite accurate but I don't want to go to huge expense because that is just about all I will use it for, at least at the moment.

I would like to have a set up of my own rather than use someone else's. Think I might combine Jake's idea with the workmate and the link given early to an excellent site by ?L Harding? I think. Sorry if it wasn't!

Thanks all.
User avatar
By sometimewoodworker
Anaria wrote:I am looking to buy or make a router table but I have no idea what I am supposed to be measuring.
Please, Please can anyone help.


Hi Anaria

There are a few places for information that haven't been mentioned yet.

For more router information than you can shake a stick at there is they are a bit US centric but nice people and helpful

A link that is even more specific is that thread has 171 posts and a wide selection of tables.

A favoured design is the Bob and Rick version from They are sponsers of the Routerforums but the forums are independent. You can't buy the Bob and Rick table as they sell only in North America bit it is very simple to build yourself.

A superb place to see some of the RouterWorkshop videos is

You will see that a table with lots of bells and whistles is not essential and a fence that is a simple length of wood with 2 G clamps will work for many jobs you want to do on a router table.
User avatar
By Smudger
Oi! Some of us DO give a monkey's!

But mostly about soft fruit, expensive planes and inexplicable cookery posts...
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By Benchwayze
Welcome to the Forum Anaria.

I take it you are routing a housing/groove for the truss rod.

I'd be tempted to do this before any shaping or tapering of the stock.
Also I wouldn't use a router table.

Use double-sided carpet tape and stick the timber down to a piece of 25mm MDF. Have the squared edge of the neck-piece overhanging enough to use as the reference and rout using the standard guide-fence that came with your router. Obviously you need the right sized cutter and that's the way that a router was intended to be used. Overhead.

It's safer than grooving over an inverted router, plus it doesn't allow dust to drop inside the router!
Much simpler and cheaper.

I know it will demand careful work afterwards to keep the groove central to the neck, but that's what building a guitar is all about. Careful work! :wink:

You might be interested in this:


There are about half-dozen vids in this series. Nice guitars.


User avatar
By sometimewoodworker
Anaria wrote:
Jake wrote:Sounds like your suggestion with the workmate might work, at least for the time being.

for a workmate router table you should look at the Niki wild router table
By Digit
Hi Anaria. We don't do gender on here, we're just wood workers! :lol:

By xy mosian
Digit wrote:Hi Anaria. We don't do gender on here, we're just wood workers! :lol:


Just so!

Now then workmates as router table support structures. There will be a time when you will be happily routing away and the whole lot will tip.

Fasten the whole thing to the floor somehow. Shelf and heavy weights just about works, better if you can bolt it to the floor. Rawplug type fixing into the garage floor, for me, with the 6mm. bolt replaced with a length of 6mm. studding which passes through a ledge across the leg frame and has a suitable nut to tighten down.

For ease of use perhaps some clamping to your existing oak workbench.

Take care have fun.

By Anaria
Thanks guys ... all of this is giving me lots to think about. I appreciate the time you are taking.
User avatar
By big soft moose
lurker wrote:
FYI there are several females here.

and its not always easy to tell from the username - for example "Alf" is a laydeee :D and i'm not really a moose , nor am i particularly soft

to my knowledge no one here has ever suggested to alf that she'd be better off changing nappies - if they did chances are good they'd shortly be extracting a plane from their posterior orrifice.

This is an equal oportunity forum, i cant guarantee that you'll never be insulted - but then we insult tom (wizer - the slap headed back whinger) most days, but its all in good fun and people will also help with the woodwork - which puts us ahead of the B&Q staff who will insult your inteligence whilst also sharing a stagering array of duff info.

Back on topic your router is a half inch model which also has a collet insert for quarter inch bits - which is why its not fitting on a 155 table.

and whoever said it (lurker ?) is right that that table is worse than useless anyway.

Building your own table is easy - all you need is a bit of old worktop and a router plate ( Dibs is organising a group buy of steel or ali plate linky )

you then draw round the plate - hog out most of the material with a jigsaw, or by hand if you need the exercise, and rout a rim secure the router to the plate - which you'll need to have drilled for your router - unless you have the capacity to drill and tap it yourself, then drop it in - et voila one router table.

oh yeah - you also need to build some sort of frame to support the worktop, but thats obvious and i dont want to seem patronising (though you really shouldnt worry your pretty little head about that :D :D :D )
User avatar
By Shadowfax
Well, that started in an interesting fashion!
Welcome, Anaria.

A router table is a really useful thing to build yourself but if you really do not need it - keep the space for something else.
You can certainly do your guitar necks without a table and, possibly, with next to no fuss but it is your choice.
I don't think it is worth buying a router table because if you build your own you have every chance to give it whatever bells and whistles YOU want. No other method will do that for you.
Just bang a few bits of wood together as the guys have said and if the result is not entirely what you wanted just do it again but a bit differently!

If it does not work out quite the way you expected - just ask here.