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Jessem Router table

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scubadoo

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I've been thinking about the Jessem table that is currently on sale at Rutlands for £250. Has anyone got one or used one?

I don't really have time or the tools to build a decent cabinet at the moment and think that this would be a good quality alternative.

Cheers

Dave
 

Howie

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Hi Scubadoo
I purchased the jessem table from Rutlands about 12 months ago.
I have teamed it up with a big triton router and must say I am very happy.
Jessem build great products. The fence is really solid and the table top dead flat.
I also agonized over the buy vs build a router table dilema, but eventually decided on buying as I just couldn't find the free time to build a new yankee version or similar.
I have also added a cabinet using the metal base that comes with the Jessem, the link for this is
http://www.woodworkersinstitute.com/page.asp?p=714
I made a version of this and added a drawer to the very bottom of the cabinet and stuck some castors on it to allow it to be moved around my small workshop.
Hope this helps.
Howie
 

scubadoo

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Thanks Howie, that's really useful and thanks for the cabinet link.
Cheers
Dave
 

scubadoo

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Can I ask you how thick the table is? Are you happy that it isn't going to bow or warp?
 

Howie

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Hi Dave
The top is 25 mm thick or pretty close.
I don't know what it's made of (mdf probably) but it is faced on both sides with a laminate and sealed around the edge with a dense plastic 'bump strip' so no danger of moisture ingress.
The top is attached to the steel base frame so no danger of warping, assuming you assemble the frame correctly. :)
The router plate is solid phenolic so that too is unlikely to sag or warp.
I've had a big triton router hanging in there for a year now and the top is still dead flat.
As I wrote in my earlier message, dead happy with the Jessem, no complaints.
Hope this is useful, any further questions just ask.
Howie
I would add that when I first received the Jessem the top was about 1mm out of flatness, but once attached to the steel frame it brought it all into line and stayed that way ever since.
 

Howie

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I've just spent a few hours in the workshop today and took the time to measure the router top thickness. It's actually 30mm and after looking at where the router plate fits, I'm 99% sure it's MDF.
Howie
 

scubadoo

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Thanks Howie, I really appreciate the time and effort!

I'm pretty much decided on getting it now. It looks like a step up from the Dakota and not too far behind the Kreg but for a much better price.

Have you used the split fence for jointing? I make guitars so that is something I'll be needing to do; jointing 1 3/4" slabs of mahogany etc.

I also have a kitchen to build in the near future.

Thanks again

Dave
 

Howie

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Hi Dave

Thanks for the kind words, I'm pleased to be helping on the forum instead of lurking like I have done for the last year or so.

I myself have not used the jointing feature on the Jessem as I primarily use MDF sheet and thus 1220mm is usually wide enough for my projects. ;-)

However I did a quick look up on Google and if you search under the following. "How to Use the Router Table As a Jointer" in videos you will find a guy from the wwgoa.com (Wood Workers guild of America). He uses a Jessem table and demonstrates a great method using a simple custom built fence which appears to work well. The Jessem fence may be absolutely fine for jointing but it does give you the option if you need it.

By the way the wwgoa.com site has a couple of videos on guitar making you may find interesting given your previous posts.

Good luck
Howie
 

scubadoo

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Thanks Howie,

I'll check that link out. At the moment I'm doing it with the router handheld balanced on a straight-edge, less than ideal. And the joint is a simple butt joint.

I really like the look of those little shims on the Jessem fence that should make jointing easy hopefully.

If you were interested, this is what I've been making http://www.stevenscustomguitars.co.uk/Guitars.html

Cheers
Dave
 

Howie

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Hi Dave
Your guitars look amazing, really like the artwork on them. The wwgoa.com site videos are on accoustic guitars so may not be of interest to you.
Shame I have even less musical ability than my dog Humphrey, he's the chap in my avatar. :)
All the best
Howie
 

scubadoo

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Howie":3fiyeywf said:
Hi Dave
Your guitars look amazing, really like the artwork on them. The wwgoa.com site videos are on accoustic guitars so may not be of interest to you.
Shame I have even less musical ability than my dog Humphrey, he's the chap in my avatar. :)
All the best
Howie
Thanks Howie, and all guitars are of interest to me!

I ordered the table on Friday, should arrive tomorrow, can't wait!

I'm definitely gonna box it in like in the link you posted. Am i right in thinking that the cabinet sits inside and isn't screwed or bolted to the frame? Just need to work out how to run the plug to an nvr switch as i'll be needing to take the router out quite often. I have the Bosch 1400 with a fixed and plunge base. The fixed base stays in the table, and the motor then pops out to sit in the plunge base. It's a great system, until i get another router of course ;)

How well does the extraction via the cabinet work if you're freehand routing on the table, ie. without the fence extraction?

Thanks for the help Howie.
 

Howie

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Hi Dave

Congrats on the imminent arrival of the Jessem, think you will be pleased.

I think the link for the router cabinet plans uses 12mm ply and the base, sides and back of the cabinet are not fixed in, they are simply pressed into place by the internal shelf.
Mine is a little different, I used 18mm MDF as it's a bit denser and thus better at noise suppression. Also I did not use an internal shelf and so simply drilled through the metal frame and screwed it to the MDF. Also I used cranked blum kitchen hinges for flush fitting doors to the front. Made a seperate drawer which I free fitted under the cabinet with some 50mm castors from screwfix on the bottom of the drawer unit.

Regarding the dust extraction, I have utilised the clear plastic collar that comes with the Triton router and connected it and the fence with some old vacuum cleaner hose dug out of a skip, which then connects to my dust extractor. This works quite well for me, but would really benefit from using a bigger diameter hose instead of the slightly asthmatic vacuum cleaner hose. Ah, well we can always find ways to improve our workshop, tools and work practice which is one of the things I love about woodworking. :)

Funny you should also ask about the NVR as I only yesterday got around to fitting one to my table. Even though I have not yet had to take the triton out of my table I was keen to keep it with the plug. To get around this I have wired the NVR to be connected to a single socket directly underneath the NVR which I have attached to the side of my cabinet which I plug the router into.

Hope this all makes sense, if you need clarifying then maybe I can take a few pictures and post them up.

Enjoy your delivery tomorrow.
Howie
 

Routermonster

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Hi Howie

Sorry to hijack this thread.

Like Dave, I have been thinking about buying the Jessem router table, which is well specified and good value. I’ve read your posts - and you seem happy that the plate hasn’t sagged or bowed? I guess the table itself is OK because it is supported by the steel frame.
I emailed Jessem last week to ask them about long term stability of their phenolic plates, but I haven’t had a reply as yet.

I have been disappointed with my existing phenolic router insert plate, which, after 5 years use has sagged ( https://www.ukworkshop.co.uk/forums/sagging-router-insert-plate-t54778.html). Therefore I am wary about buying another, and am wondering whether to buy an aluminium plate instead. The problem is that it is likely to mean building or buying a new table top. Like you did, I’m trying to weigh up the cost versus the time needed …..

Hmmm …. Still undecided, but the Jessem certainly looks tempting.

Les
 

scubadoo

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The table arrived a day late, this morning.

I opened the fence first and blimey, it looks like a serious piece of kit. First impressions are very good and I'm glad I went for this and not the Dakota.

Next i opened the table top; I don't think i quite realised how big it would be! I'm very pleased with the size.

On to the problem, the insert plate should, I assume, easily drop in to the routed hole and not be too tight? Well let's just say that it does not. I would need to sand at least one of the rounded corners and to be honest I'd rather not until Rutlands get back to me. (I phoned them today but they haven't got back to me yet).

There is also a chip on one corner of the plate at the screw hole.

Maybe I should get them to swap the whole table or at least the plate?

I would have thought CNCing would have eliminated this problem.

Apart from this, I'm happy that I've bought the right table, I obviously haven't checked trueness yet but i'm sure it'll be fine.

Howie: how did your insert fit?

Overall it does look like a great value piece of kit.
 

Howie

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Hi Les
Very happy for you to join in this thread.
As I have said I am really happy with my Jessem table, i can't fault it.
However It would appear that some members are experiencing problems with the rigidity of their tables and plates and as a result I am becoming slightly alarmed about the prospect of my rout r plate sagging. I will check it out very carefully when I am next in the workshop.
Don't expect it to have moved but might consider lifting the router and plate out of the table and putting it inside the cabinet below when not in use.

Hi Dave
Just seen your post, my rout r plate fitted perfect and still does I think :?: I am sooo going to be checking it over this weekend.
Sorry to hear about the problem, it is such a PITA when you are really looking forward to a new tool and it has to be returned. I had the same problem a few weeks ago when I got a worksharp 2000 from Rutlands (at £70 with free delivery I just couldn't resist). The chisel rest was not level with the disk and so my chisels were coming out sharp but with a bevel on the ends instead of square. :x
Anyway called up Rutlands and after sending them some photos of the chisels and how they were coming out they arranged to collect the worksharp and after they got it back arranged a replacement, took about a week all up which is a bit infuriating. The replacement works a treat and makes keeping my chisels (and SWMBO's kitchen knives) sharp dead easy.
Howie

All the best
Howie
 

Howie

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Call me a obsessive compulsive but, I just had to go out to the workshop immediately after my last post to check the table and insert out for sagging.

And....... Drum roll please

The table and insert are still flatter than a flat thing.

I can sleep well tonight.:)

Howie
 

scubadoo

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I've had this table for a while now, mostly freehand routing with template bits for guitar bodies and necks and have now come to do some 'proper' joinery and something has occurred to me.

Because of the way the insert plate is positioned, i.e. shortest side parallel to the mitre track, i can't use my Kreg feather boards to hold thin stock against the fence. Am I being stupid or is this a bit of a design flaw??
 

merlin

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Hello Dave,
I had the same problem with mine so I fitted my Jessem feather boards to a plywood back board.
The ply fixes to the groove in the base and the slot in the fence then the feather boards fix to the ply and can be adjusted to suit. I will take some photos tomorrow so you can see how I did it.
Cheers, Merlin
 

merlin

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Hello Dave,
Hope this helps, the only slight snag is if you need to feed something through lower than 18mm.
Other than that I think the Jessem is a great piece of kit.
Cheers, Merlin.
 

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