I am trying to make my first router table for my new PC 7518 router. Several
books suggested "plastic laminate" on top of the plywood (I useed 3 sheets
of 1/2' birch plywood). The closest I could come was some formica from
The lamination seemed to go well but I edged the table with 1/4" birch
strips. I made a "Flush-Trimming Baseplate" as described in Hylton's Router
Magic book. Either I set the tolerance to close or the table was not quite
flat ... when I tried to level the edging I took off some of the color layer
of the formica. AARRGGH!
I tried touching it up with some enamel touch up paint and it doesn't look
TOO terrible ...
I think I might have been better off to just varnish the surface of the
birch plywood. Then at least I would be able to repair the surface. Would
this work as well? Or is there a better surface material which is not so
Is it possible to remove the formica? Its bonded to the plywood with
Weldwood contact cement.
Any suggestions appreciated.
Easy to fix. Cut the edges off on the tablesaw. Now you edge it with 3/4"
Or, flip it over and laminate the other side.
Or do both
If the table is not flat, you may run into other problems when using it.
Check that first.
Forget about how the thing looks and spend some time
checking out it's performance.
You can shim/shave/adjust to your preference.
Woodworking is usually not pretty ('cept in the
Well, I don't know about router magic, but when I trimmed mine, I went
nice and slow, leaving just a little lip, and then filed the excess
off carefully. It turned out well, but even if it had not, I don't
think it would have really been an issue- the top just has to be
smooth and flat, not pretty!
I'm not sure if it is hot enough or not, but I'd try using an iron to
soften the cement. But odds are, you're stuck with it.
Just use and enjoy the table- you can try again later if you decide to
make another one for some reason.
Thanks everyone for your comments!
I was being way too perfectionistic. The table is comming out quite nicely
and the enamel paint worked very nicely, you hardly notice it. Also it is
not in a critical working area of the table.
I posted some pictures if anyone is interested. It might be of interest to
anyone with an old DeWalt DW744 table saw. This saw has dual rack and
pinions for the fence which can be extended way past the end of the saw. I
took advantage of this. I still have to make a secondary fence which will
attach to the table saw fence for clearance and perhaps a dust collector.
Here is the table less the final fence addition:
The place where I routed through the formica paint layer is on the top left
... hardly visable.
Here is the underside of the table. You can see the captured hex cap screws
which bolt to holes I drilled and threaded in the side of the saw table.
There are small set screws in brass inserts near the edge to help with
leveling. The cap screws in the braces lead to captive threaded plates
inside the table.
Leveling could be better but the table is not off by more than 0.01" at any
point and remains adjustable.
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