Routing small pieces

I have 40+ small pieces of wood to rout rabbets in and need some advice as to how to safely hold the work. They are 2-3/4 x 3 x 5/8, small drawer fronts, and I need to rout 7/16 x 7/16 rabbets in 3 sides of each one.
Any suggestions or links?
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scritch wrote:

Assduming you have a router table....
First thing that comes to mind is holding them in a clamp.
Second thing that comes to mind is to make a block that is the female or negative of the piece your are rabbeting. Cut those dimensions into a block of some kind, into which the pieces will sit, or be cradled.
Third thing that comes to mind is to just use a hold-down pad and a backer block. Hold the piece down and against the fence with the pad, use the backer block to push it through the bit. This is probably the easiest and quickest way.
In any case, make sure there is no gap in the fence at the bit. This may mean installing a sacrificial fence to the existing fence.
--

-MIKE-

"Playing is not something I do at night, it's my function in life"
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Build a jig/sled for the router table integrating a hold-down clamp.
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"scritch" wrote:

Build a carrier with an over center clamp to hold piece.
Use a router table with a starting pin.
Use a rabbeting bit with a bottom pilot bearing.
Plan the cutting sequence so you eliminate any chip out or use a backer block.
Have fun.
Lew
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"scritch" wrote:

Another approach:
Build a carrier with an over center clamp to hold piece.
Use a table saw with a dado set and a sacrifical fence.
Have fun.
Lew
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What he said, and this is why:
(1) your table saw can run dozens of air-cooled teeth through the work, while the poor router only has two edges doing it all
(2) your carrier can have any handles you find convenient, and hand-feeding the wood will be finger-safe
My preference would be for a no-clamp carrier, just a plywood plate with a socket and some hold-down piece on top; your hand pressure holding the work against the sacrificial fence, and your down pressure on the handles, is enough.
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whit3rd wrote:

After a bit of thought, I took your advice and made a little gripper kind of like tongs that pinched the drawer fronts in my tenon jig so I could use my dado stack. Then it was just zip, zip, zip, about 130 times.
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scritch wrote:

Assume you have a router table with fence. I made a wooden clamp to hold such little pieces. I would also wear a face mask for protection in case one took a notion to fly away. I would not use a metal clamp because of the danger of it getting into the spinning router bit.
--
Gerald Ross
Cochran, GA
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Like others said, make a sled that you can clamp the piece on to.
Another approach to small pieces is to do some or all of the work on a larger piece and then cut it down. Like when you do the moded edge of a wide board and then rip off the edge to be used as a thin piece of modling. So maybe you could cut rabbets on two sides of a wider piece first and then rip it down into several smaller drawer fronts. then do the other cuts.
I said wider because its best to do the cross cuts first on a wider piece and then rip down and do the long grain cuts.

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SonomaProducts.com wrote:

Bingo!!! (I like the way that man thinks... :) )
I'd probably make them from blanks of three or four -- better grain matching that way, too, in all likelihood and certainly easier to keep matched through the process so they are in order for that purpose.
I'd also likely cut the middle "rabbets" as dadoes on the tablesaw (accounting for the extra length overall/width of dado for separating them) then the pieces are all big enough to do w/o any clamping or special fixtures needed. At the end I might clean up the rabbets w/ a very light touch over the router but that would be such a light cut that even there only a fence would be needed to run the edges against.
--
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Good ideas, all. Thanks!
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Me, too. That would be the way I would approach it, without doubt.
Robert
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snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

I just assumed he has the parts already cut to size.
--

-MIKE-

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I did too, because he said "I have 40+ small pieces of wood to rout rabbets in"
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Dave Balderstone wrote:

Also, too, since each piece needed three rabbets, it would be a miracle of precise measuring and saw setup to precut all of the rabbets in long stock, then cut out the fronts (first cut a rabbet in the long edge of the stock, then cut double-wide dadoes across the stock, including enough for the saw kerf between each piece to be cut off, then actually cut each part from the stock exactly in the middle of each of those dadoes). Also, I am using up little bits of scrap I have collected over the years, so I didn't have much long stock (actually, one piece).
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