Router Table Top
Those involved in woodwork and joinery will be fully aware of the necessity of having good quality equipment that allows you to make the most of your material. One item that is key to working with smaller pieces of material, or with complex techniques that may otherwise be somewhat dangerous, is a router table.
A router table is a table or bench on which the router is mounted upside down. This particular arrangement allows the worker more flexibility in terms of working with certain items, as it means that the worker is able to pass the material over the router rather than the other way around. This allows for increased flexibility and precision when working with small or intricate items.
There are a variety of tops for router tables on the market, with different products targeted at different levels of experience and need. Some more basic router tables may suit a hobbyist, while other more complex and involved tables are more suited to the working professional. A very basic router table has a top, known as a router table top, to the underneath of which the router is attached. As the worker is able to carefully manipulate the material being used, the router can be used to route more complex designs or joinery than might otherwise be possible. While some tops will have the router permanently bolted to them, other set-ups will allow the router to be easily removed to allow for the needs of different jobs.
When purchasing a router table top, it’s essential to consider your needs as a professional or a hobbyist. If you tend to do a large amount of edge work, you may consider purchasing a special top that allows the router to be mounted vertically rather than horizontally. This can be highly effective in routing the edges of material, and allows for greater precision in terms of edge slotting or raising panels. If you do purchase an attachment that allows for this, see whether it is also capable of mounting the router horizontally as well, or that it allows for the easy removal of the router from the table. This can help cut back on the time taken to adjust equipment, or reduce the need to double up on expensive routing equipment.
The type and size of top is also an essential consideration. They vary quite significantly in the amount of working space that they provide, so you should consider the types of material with which you commonly work. Some tables are available with surface add-ons, and this may be a viable option for some. In contrast, a smaller router table may be better for those with limited space, or who typically work with smaller pieces of material. The positioning of the router is also another consideration. While for most a centrally positioned router is optimal, other users may wish to consider a set up where the router is positioned in a different area of the table.
Make sure the router table top you choose will comfortably accommodate your particular equipment, allowing for easy removal and adjustment.
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