Saturday, May 30, 2015

A little tablesaw upgrade - as simple as it gets

Great minds think alike. 

My buddy John just bought a SawStop tablesaw, and he mounted a router base underneath the table, so that he could use it as a router table. I've done this almost every saw that I've owned; it's a pretty smart way to save space in your shop. 

Who doesn't love that!?

Router tables have been one of the conundrums for me at the school - we definitely need good one, so I bought this beast of a router table recently. 

But there are couple of times that we need a second router, and I didn't want to waste the floor space, nor the money, purchasing a second one of these. So I decided to mount a router base on my table saw. The router and saw can share the fence, which is great.

I started by drilling a single hole in the table top, where I wanted locate the router bit on the top. 

Then I lined up the base and started drilling the three mounting holes. It didn't matter that hole was perfectly centered in the base; you'll see why later. 

 Here – two of the three holes are drilled and the base is attached. It's wise to do this slowly, so you get a perfectly aligned mounting holes. I use the Vix bit. 

After the three holes were drilled I tested the installation, by mounting the base underneath.

But then I flip things around and mounted a plunge router on top, using those three mounting holes that I drilled. My plan is to use the router to drill that hole in the top; it will be perfectly centered.

You know, I've done this to several saws before, and I've done it in a match harder method. This way was so simple, I did it in about 20 minutes!

 Here's a little video of me drilling the hole in the top. 

Now you can see why it wasn't imperative that that first hole was perfectly centered. All I needed to do was get the bearing to fit into it. 

And voilà Рcheck out this clean installation!

I have an extra router base, so I'll keep this permanently mounted under my saw. When I need to use this as a router table, I'll just pop a router into this base and be good to go.  

I wish all the chores in the shop were the simple! I'll have to ask John how he mounted his router. I suspect he did it in a similar fashion. 

Like I said– great minds think alike!

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