Router Base Plate

Hi, all. I just bought a fixed base router and have never used a router before now,if this is an obvious question to most. The opening in the base plate that came with the thing is to small for the bit that I want to use to fit through. My question is, is there a reason why I shouldn't use the router without a base plate attached, and if so, are various base plates generally available in hardware stores, etc...? I want to do some edge routing to a very narrow piece of wood. I'm trying to use a round over bit to make a flat edge into a dome shape (by doing one pass on each side). I'm still working on the best way to get at this piece, but I'm thinking I'll figure that out through trial and error. However, with what I currently have the only way I can see to use this bit (and some of the other ones in the set I bought) is to remove the base plate, leaving a large (4.5 inch or so) opening; Isn't it not really a good idea to have such an enormous difference between the radius of the bit and the opening it fits through? The bit opening in the plate that came with the tool is about 1.5 inches across and the bit's radius is just slightly larger. Also, I would have the metalic base of the router "gliding" over the work piece. Makita does make a different style base plate with a larger opening that the bit certainly would fit through, but in the small town I live in I doubt I would have an easy time coming by it. Mostly, though, I'm wondering wether I should not even consider using the router without some sort of base plate in place. TIA.
Mark
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Mark wrote:>Hi, all. I just bought a fixed base router and have never used a

You should have as much plate as you can to support the router.You could make yourself a plate out of some thin plywood or something. Sounds like you'll learn a lot. Never having used a router before, using a wide bit on small stock, and single passing it will show you a thing or two. Be careful. Tom Someday, it'll all be over....
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ever considered getting a router table, Mark?
dave
Mark wrote:

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Mark wrote:

While I do believe it would be unsafe to use the router without a base- plate (some plungers DO need it), at best, you'll have a tipsy router that could mar your workpiece!
Some HomeDepot/Lowes/Hardware store sell "Universal" base plates that would serve the purpose.
OR... as Tom pointed out, make yourself a temporary base-plate from 1/4" plywood or hardboard (Masonite) using the original base-plate as a template for the screw holes and bore/saw an appropriately sized center hole. Extreme accuracy is not needed!
HTH,
Charlie LegMan (remove 999 for eMail)
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LegMan wrote: <snippage>

ARGH... make that "While I do NOT believe...".
Charlie LegMan (remove 999 for eMail)
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On 1 Mar 2004 19:50:21 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (Mark) wrote:

welcome to the world of Making Stuff For Your Router.
take the subbase off of the router and use it as a template to lay out the screw holes for the 4 or 5 new ones that you are going to make. before you put any of them back on, though, make a router table and mount the router to that to do your roundover.
roundovers that meet- IE have no flat left between them- really should be done on a table.
the table can be a scrap of plywood clamped to the bench. the fence is a straight stick. don't get too fancy making your first router table. right away you'll figure out that you want sonething to be different...
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Mark, please do your fingers a favor and either buy or check out (library) a book on routers before you use yours. I almost got my fingers lopped off the first time I used one. I was feeding stock into the router (in a table I had just built) the wrong direction and it grabbed the piece and sucked it into the bit and by the time my reactions kicked in I was about an inch from the bit and still firmly gripping the piece. Had the piece been any longer I'd be really messed up -- oh and take your watch & and any rings off (roll up your sleeves too).
If I'm scaring you, then good. I shudder everytime I think about a few of my first learning experiences and near misses with the equipment I have. I'm much better now and I love woodworking as I'm sure you will too someday, but it would be awful to ruin your experience right away with a nasty accident that could have been avoided.
Here's a great website on routers (you can even order extra bases from him that fit the bigger bits -- don't go too big, your router might not handle it): http://www.patwarner.com/index.shtml
Here's another site that I go to about once a quarter to read up on new accidents so I can avoid them (did you know you can get kickback on a planer -- I didn't until I read an accident or three about them): http://www.woodworking2.org/AccidentSurvey/search.htm
Good luck, have fun, and be safe :)
Mike

[snip]
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