Router tale insert

I'm going to begin building my ultimate router table and am looking for recommendations, warnings, deals, etc... on router table inserts. I'm on a budget (who isn't?) so, much as I'd like to, I can't put one of those fancy, above-table, height adjustment mech's in, but recommendations on a plate would be appreciated.
TIA
oh, by the way, this is for my brand spanking new Hitachi 3 1/4 EVS plunge routah (neener) which replaced my new boat anchor nee crapsman router.
Joe C.
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Budget? why not make it out of a scrap of plexiglass or Lexan, maybe from a window shop. Anything 3/16 or more should be fine. Of course you could use aluminum if you can work it. A hacksaw blade in a sabre saw would cut it, as would a handsaw. You can rout out the table with a small guide at the center of the hole. Rout a groove, then use a sabre saw to take out the center and leave the shoulder. There's no saying the plate can't be circular, so how about using a small wood disk as the pattern? Tack it in place and rout around it with a straight bit. Use two disks of different size to make the groove wider, if you don't have a large bit. Wilson

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the round plate would have to have a key/pin to stop counter torque. I would not use a round plate. <s>
-- SwampBug - - - - - - - - - - - -

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Joe C wrote:

some holes screwed the router in place, it seems to work pretty well that way so I can wait until someday for an insert.
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If you're on a budget, then I agree w/ Wilson, make your own from Lexan. There's probably a plastics shop in your area (look in the yellow pages under plastics) that will sell you a piece for a pittance, if they don't just give it to you from the cutoff pile.
I would suggest using the thickest you can easily obtain. Don't make it any larger than you have to (the size will be determined by how large a hole you need in the router table top for the router to pass thru). These will avoid any problems with the router sagging.
I would make the insert square, and take the time to get the router exactly centered in it. This makes a convenient base for following a guide batten or a jig when the router is out of the table. If you center the router on the base, then you don't have to worry about always holding the router the same way around (mine is 1/8th off center, which is annoying...one of these days I'll do it over).
John
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As for the raise / lower thingie - woodsmith has a great idea how to do w/ a pipe clamp. Very neat idea.

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http://www.woodpeck.com/phenolicinsert.html
This product works for me. I couldn't build it more cheaply, and the changable inserts allow much safer work conditions.
Patriarch
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Here is what I used on mine.
http://www.northwestpowertools.com/routers/table/rm3509.htm
--
Al Reid

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Al,
I like that particular one.
Does the slight crown they advertise as being built into the plate cause any issues?

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It did not cause a problem for me. I have a PC 7518 3-1/4 HP unit handing under mine. there was no crown detectable crown with the router installed.
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Al Reid

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Make the insert the same size or smaller than a lift. You can always cut the hole larger if you decide to add one later. Benchdog, as well as others, do sell phenolic inserts for about $20. Check them out at www.routerbits.com
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I've gone through a couple of router table inserts and my last one was the Rockler insert. It's aluminum and doesn't deflect much at all. But I have to tell you, if your planning on doing any furniture making I would recommend the rout-r-lift or something similar. These devices are worth every penny if your doing precise work. I switched over to a Rout-R-Lift and making .002 inch changes is heaven sent. Just my 2 cents.
Don

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