Blue View – A Router Table Enclosure

Guest blog by Paul Lynn

The Lynn Bros are still busy building the backyard deck … a project which has significantly expanded to exceed all expectations. I was pretty positive that between the two brothers, they owned every tool known to man … all of which are now situated in the backyard. I was wrong ... they do not have a band saw  ... a fact of which I am reminded daily. Paul took a break from building to contribute this project post.


Though Marcie’s convinced we have every tool known to man, we don’t (there’s that band saw and so many more). We do, however, have a table-mounted router which we’ve been using pretty much everyday. Though it works well, it had two undesirable features. First, the work table area was too small; and second, it has to be the messiest tool in the workshop. It spews out sawdust and wood chips in copious amounts as it's doing its job which ends up covering everything. We got sick of inhaling the sawdust and doing the messy clean-up every night and decided a little tool modification was in order. While David and Marcie enjoyed their Sunday stroll through Springs Preserve last weekend, I went to work and came up with a router table enclosure design and built it.

The basic design had these criteria:

  • Enlarge the work table area

  • Confine and contain the sawdust and debris

  • Allow easy access for bit changes and adjustments

  • Maintain lightweight portability

Since pictures speak louder than words, here's the step-by-step process.

 Here's the table mounted router that I wanted to modify. Note that the legs are a bit splayed.

Here's the table mounted router that I wanted to modify. Note that the legs are a bit splayed.

  I removed the router and tabletop, then squared off the table edges.

 I removed the router and tabletop, then squared off the table edges.

 I added a ledger board to the underside of the tabletop ...

I added a ledger board to the underside of the tabletop ...

 so I could enlarge the working area.

so I could enlarge the working area.

  The next step was to cut  1/4” plywood to fit the sides.

 The next step was to cut  1/4” plywood to fit the sides.

 I added a sliding access panel to the front of box  ...

I added a sliding access panel to the front of box  ...

 so we can easily make bit changes and adjustments when necessary.

so we can easily make bit changes and adjustments when necessary.

DSC01226.JPG
DSC01223.JPG

I relocated the on-off switch to the outside of the box for easy access.

 I cut a hole in the back of the box and used a vacuum hose adapter, so we could  attach the shop vac to suck out all the sawdust as we worked.

I cut a hole in the back of the box and used a vacuum hose adapter, so we could  attach the shop vac to suck out all the sawdust as we worked.

 Baffles were added to the inside of the box so that the sawdust was concentrated in a central area for easier clean-up.

Baffles were added to the inside of the box so that the sawdust was concentrated in a central area for easier clean-up.

 It works like a charm … but we still don’t have that band saw.

It works like a charm … but we still don’t have that band saw.