How to Mount a Router to a Table

A  router is one of the most useful tools for woodwork. So, it is a must-have for all woodworkers. As you may have observed, there are two basic types of routers – The handheld router and table router.

The former is very portable, and you can easily take it everywhere with you, but it is not as useful as the latter. The table router can handle a lot of jobs that the handheld router cannot do. Table routers will give you more accurate cuts.

So, even if you already have a handheld router, you’ll still need a table router. You can use a router for jointing wood, cutting dadoes and chamfers, shaping rails and stiles, and for decorating shelf edges. Experienced woodworkers will tell you that your tools are incomplete without a table router.

Here is a little challenge. Table routers are not delivered already installed on a table. You’ll have to install it yourself. That’s why people buy them separately. If you must use a table router, you’ll have to learn how to mount a router to a table. It is not as difficult as you think.

Just follow all manufacturers’ instructions. It may be difficult the first time, but you’ll definitely get better with multiple attempts.

Since you already have a router and a router table, you’ll need a screwdriver. Many router tables come with some other accessories that may be useful to you.

Match the Brands

It is advisable to buy the same brand of router and router table. When you do that, it will be easier to mount the router on the table. The table will be pre-drilled for mounting of the router. You won’t need to drill the holes, and you won’t need to check if the holes on the table match the holes in the router base.

So, mounting the router will be easier and faster.

However, it is not mandatory to match the brand. You can mount a router on a table manufactured by different brands. It will only be more difficult. We are not experts in woodwork, but we were able to mount a router on a router table easily because they are of the same brand.

Drill Holes on the Insert Plate

Check if the table comes with pre-drilled holes. If it does, try to align it with the holes at the base of the router to be sure that the holes in the insert plate correspond with the holes under the router. This is necessary because not every set of holes fit every router.

So, if the holes align well with the holes under the router, you are lucky, just move on to the next step. But if the holes don’t match, you may have to drill another set of holes in the insert plate. Finally, if the table and router are of the same brand, you can skip this step.

Remove the Base Plate

1. Step 1

You need to unplug the router, and if there is a bit in place, you need to remove it as well.

2. Step 2

There should be about three mounting screws holding the base plate. Unscrew and remove them one after the other. Carefully put them in a safe place. You will need the screws to attach the router to the base plate. So, don’t allow any of them to get missing.

3. Step 3

After removing the screws, gently remove the plastic base plate from the router. It is very easy.

Fix the Router to the Router Table

1. Step 1

Remember, you have already drilled holes in the router table. Now, remove the insert. Position the router upside down and push it into the hole from under the table. Place it inside the insert hole.

2. Step 2

Now, you have to rotate the router until the holes in it fall in line with the holes on the table. This could take some minutes, but it is necessary. Without aligning the holes, you can’t install the router. Don’t rotate it too fast, or you may keep missing the points. You can align the holes in less than 2 minutes if you rotate it slowly.

3. Step 3

After aligning the holes, you need to insert the screws in appropriate holes.  Thread the screws into the base of the router and tighten them all so that the router will sit in place firmly.

While it is necessary for the screws to be very tight, they should not be too tight. If they are too tight, it may be difficult for you to remove them in the future.

Most tables come with a power outlet and power cord. Instead of plugging your router to a wall outlet separately, it is better to plug your router into the table’s outlet and then plug the table’s power cord into your wall outlet.

That way, you’ll only need to power on the table for your router to start working. It is more convenient that way.

Most importantly, it is advisable to read the table’s user manual before you begin the installation. User manuals are usually filled with several important information that you need. Your table’s manual may also have guides on the installation of router.

Maintenance Tips

Before performing any cleaning on your router, you must switch off and unplug your router.  This is because it is possible for you to mistakenly switch it on while cleaning it. This could be dangerous. But if the router is already unplugged, you’ll be safe.

The blades of your router will get blunt over time, and this will reduce the effectiveness of the router. So, you need to sharpen the blades a couple of times before you eventually replace them.

When you begin to notice a drop in the quality of cuts, the blades may be due for sharpening. After sharpening the blades on two occasions, when they get blunt again, you may have to replace them completely.

Final Verdict

Now you have learned a few things on how to mount a router to a table. Don’t forget the important tips that surround the topic. It is better to have both router and table come from the same brand.

Installation will be easier that way.Always unplug your router before carrying out any maintenance check. Finally, sharpen or replace the blades of your router when they become blunt.