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The Woodworking Router and Its Supporting Tools

April 12, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 169

The woodworking router is a tool common in industries dealing with hardwoods. Units are popular among patternmakers and staircase designers because it is easy to create basic and intricate patterns on timber. The machinery also grew in popularity in the cabinet industry, as it proved valuable for different purposes.

Hand tools of the sort prior to the power tool boom consisted of a wide-based wooden hand plane and a narrow blade protruding beyond the base plate. Such a design went by the nickname of "Old Woman's Tooth" because of its similarity in shape. Woodworkers continued the development of the product because of the different advantages it presented.

The original hand tool was still popular among carpenters and woodworkers despite the introduction of newer power tools. Demand for faster production is what gave rise to the use of electric routers. This rise also paved the way for the creation of the different router bits available today. The following is an overview of the modern tool used today.

Router types

A woodworking router is typically available in two major types: table mounted and handheld. Which to use depends on the scale of your application. Table-mounted equipment operates with the use of an accompanying worktable. This unit is ideal if you are creating smaller, delicate pieces because it is much easier to handle. Router bits face upwards and allow you to cut pieces with more precision. These units are also considerably safer since wood pieces are secure and set in place. It is the ideal choice if you are a beginner or are into woodworking as a hobby rather than a profession.

Handheld units normally have large handles on both sides with a motor in the centre. The placements of these parts have a purpose - to make it easier to manipulate movement. It gives users maximum control of the machine and its handling. Some newer models have features not found in earlier designs. One of the more popular ones is a dust collection system that vacuums the sawdust as you go along. It is a notable feature especially if you do not have a proper workshop for your projects.

Bits and Pieces

Router bits come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Each of the different diameter types produce varying effects on wood or whatever material you are working with. A good example is the half-inch bits popular among professional woodworkers and hobbyists. These pieces are rigid and create smoother cuts. Such bits also take in lesser vibration. Handling is significantly less shaky and allows you to create designs with ease.

Some online retailers produce customized router bits for your specific cutting needs. These pieces are useful if you are working on smaller material or delicate projects like a restoration. Look into such tools if your project involves the use of original mouldings and woodwork trims that are no longer commercially available.

Buying your woodworking router and bits

Think about the items you plan to create or repair before looking into your options. Seek advice from professional carpenters, builders, or even hardware store personnel to figure out which will work best for you. Using a woodworking router can present some dangers. It is important to buy appropriate protective gear such as safety glasses, gloves, and earmuffs. These items will help ensure your safety as you go about the project.

Rudi Kennedy is a hobbyist using a woodworking router and owns a collection of router bits.

Source: EzineArticles
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