Ed White

Template routing for plugbuilding

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Posted (edited)

So, Fall is coming and I wanted to make a few more gliders, I usually trace a shape out from a template, rough cut it on the bandsaw, then sand it down to final size. But after watching some guys on Youtube build some pretty interesting stuff using template routing, I thought I'd give it a go. I thought I'd drop this in the Glider thread, but it really applies to any shape that is not round. Any "handcarve" blank can be duplicated this way, if you have a router table, and a flushcut router bit.

So, it starts with making a template of any shape that you're happy with, I just happened to have some glider templates on hand, so I used them. The point of this is to be able to make pretty exact copies of any shape you're working on to remove that variable. So I take the template and mark out some pieces to rough out with the bandsaw.TEMPLATE.jpg.ad791fce0bf4e5b394a77f53aad95cba.jpg

 

The idea is to make your cuts close to the line, so your router bit doesn't need to work too hard. Take some double sided tape and stick your template onto the rough blank.

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It doesn't take a lot of tape to hold the 2 pieces firmly together. Too much and you will struggle to get them apart. Next picture shows the bit with a double row bearing installed, the bearings follow the template, and the cutter does it's thing.

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The video shows how I do the fun part, I know some folks will not like my fingers being close to the cutter, but rest assured, I am never pushing towards the cutter, mostly pushing down to minimize any chatter. If you ever feel uncomfortable making a cut with a power tool, DON'T DO IT!! In the video I'm pushing down, and pulling the piece against the direction of the cutter's rotation. I've tried using push blocks, and felt I gave up control, so this is how I do it.

 

Template Routing

 

What you're left with is an exact copy of your template. I run a few more pieces the same way, switch to a smaller template and do a few more pieces, and wind up with a batch that's ready for a roundover. Once they are rounded over, start sanding, and drill some holes.

 

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20220814_104433.mp4

Edited by Ed White

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Anyone know how to embed the video so it plays instead of prompting you to download?

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Ed - go back to the video (youtube, etc.) & clip the URL (https://***************) copy & paste back to us.

Who made the template & we can also find it that way.

Thanks

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Template routing works great, but a word of caution, STAY ALERT !!!  Small patterns/templates and router tables are dangerous. Trim your blank as close to finished size as you can so you're trimming very little, 1/16 max. I've had pieces ripped right out of my hand, ( regardless of bit rotation direction) when introduced to the bit because it was trying to take to big of a bite.....I've made guitar parts using this method for years, and there's still a little anxiety when introducing the piece to the bit. I also  always wear tight fitting  non-slip gloves , but that's personal preference, many folks don't like wearing them. Do what YOU feel safe doing....Safety first.....

 

Jim

 

 

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Exactly Jim,

Light bites and focus, no matter what cut you're making in the shop. .

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Posted (edited)

I think if you were doing a few of these you could make some jigs to hold the work tight while running it through the router

 

also if you seal the template with epoxy it will give a harder surface and not dent as easy

Edited by adson

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