- Which router is right
- Router mounting bracket
- Frame made of steel
- Vertical movement mechanism
- Table and smooth feeding device
Small wooden parts are much more convenient to handle on a smooth feed table. Today we will find out how to make a full-fledged machine for home woodworking from a hand router. We will also decide on the most suitable materials for the construction of the bed and table.
Which router is right
Independent production of a drive and transmission for a wood milling machine by an ordinary person is not possible. Therefore, we suggest using a conventional hand-held router. Almost any modification will work, with the possible exception of small one-handed models and engravers. The milling cutter will be quick-detachable, but if you see the point of a targeted purchase, do not pay attention to the delights of ergonomics and additional devices..
Small routers do not have the ability to fix normally – the size of the sole does not allow. The tool must have a sufficiently powerful frame, because the force will not be transmitted to the body directly, but through the iron base and its guides.
All kinds of attachments, such as the stop strips of the feed rails, are not of interest for the manufacture of the machine, but the depth adjustment mechanism can be very useful for copying and accurately setting the cutter height. However, the machine itself has a mechanism that is used for preliminary adjustment, so it can handle even oversized parts..
The issue of power and speed is purely individual and depends on the materials being processed, as well as on the desired processing quality. It is important that the machine components are suitable for the power and weight of the router. The design of the machine for a medium mill is described below – with a power of up to 1.5 kW and with a maximum idle speed of 20 thousand rpm.
Router mounting bracket
The milling cutter will be attached to the machine through a special structure that resembles a forklift. Two corners of 30×30 mm are welded with horizontal shelves to each other with such a distance so that the flat edges of the base of the electric machine fit exactly between the vertical sides. If the base is round, no problem – four fastening points will be enough to securely fix the tool on the corners with M10 hex bolts.
The holes, respectively, should be 10.5-11 mm in diameter, their center is located exactly on the edge of the corner. There are nuances in the drilling technique: it is imperative to observe a safe distance from the edge, drill only from the bottom side and then countersink, carefully process the edges until the scoring is completely eliminated.
The fork is made U-shaped with a horn length of about 250-350 mm, the middle part is made with a 50 mm corner. The fork is welded from the side to a section of a profile 60 mm square pipe 20–25 cm long. It should be welded at the bottom of the pipe, and then the ends of the forks should be connected to the upper edge with bevels made of steel strip. A more significant “overhang” of the router is also possible, for example, for processing paneled doors, but the bracket must first be strengthened – use a 50 mm angle on the side parts of the fork and correctly space the attachment points with the slopes.
On the inner edges of the fork, a series of semicircular slots with a radius of 5 mm must be made. It is optimal to first make shallow cuts with a grinder, and then expand them with a round file. The holes should be located in such a way that the router can be easily rearranged at a certain interval. Thus, the distance between the centers of the slots should be two or three times less than the center-to-center of the holes..
It is very convenient to use hex screws: if they are screwed into a plate with two threaded holes, then no additional wrench is needed, and the tightening can be done with one hand. That is, from the bottom we have two strips located across the fork, which completely excludes the displacement of the bolts and the dismount of the router from the mount. Remember also that the inner corner of the corner steel has a radius mate, so if there is no chamfer on the base of the router, you need to make a small cut with the angle grinder.
Frame made of steel
For the manufacture of the bed and other parts, a profile square pipe of two standard sizes will be used: 50x50x4 mm and 60x60x5 mm. We use the telescopic folding tube principle to create the height adjustment rail system. In order to match the inner size of one pipe as closely as possible to the outer size of another, you can choose products with different wall thicknesses.
Ideally, there should not be a noticeable gap, but even if there is a run up to two millimeters, such a gap can be easily eliminated. In the walls of the outer pipe, holes must be drilled and nuts welded on. By screwing in the screws, you can expand the sleeve and achieve precise alignment. With a large gap, you can add a spacer insert to the design, which has two shallow cores to support the edges of the screws.
The base of the bed is a U-shaped structure with sides 70×70 cm, welded from a square pipe 50×50 mm. A vertical post of the same pipe is installed perpendicularly to the center of the middle link, the lower attachment point is reinforced with two gussets made of sheet steel.
For the table, it is necessary to make a structure of two parallel pipes, between which a pipe segment is welded perpendicularly. Thus, the height of both the table and the router can be adjusted in the machine. The ends of the pipe should be moved back a little so that when a massive part is fixed on the table, a counterweight can be placed on these “tails”.
Vertical movement mechanism
It would be a good solution to equip the arm and table fork with a mechanism that, when the handle rotates, will raise or lower the latter. Of course, additional fixation of these elements by tightening after adjusting them will be required, but with a drive this operation is much easier to carry out..
On one of the walls of the mounting sleeves (which slide along the guide post), a rectangular piece must be cut to gain access to the inner tube. There are two versions of the feed mechanism:
- Drill holes along the pipe with a pitch of a bicycle sprocket and use the latter as a rack and pinion gear.
- Use a typesetting polyurethane roller fitted on an axle with a handle.
In the latter case, rubber products should not be used, they do not tolerate contact with lubricant well. The axis is fixed in a U-shaped cage, on the middle shelf of which a hole is drilled, and a nut is welded on. A bolt screwed into it attracts the roller and provides the desired grip.
Another option is also possible. It is not necessary to saw through, and instead of a roller or an asterisk, a piece of round timber with a diameter of 50-60 mm is inserted. A 3 mm steel cable is stretched along the entire vertical post on lanyards; it is also wrapped around the roll with 2-3 turns. When properly adjusted, such a system can fully support its own weight..
Table and smooth feeding device
The second important element of any milling machine – table feed – is carried out by means of a screw pin 50-60 cm long. It can have either a regular thread M12 or M14, or it can be machined according to an individual profile, if there is a goal to play with the gear ratio by changing the step.
The table will slide along the guides – the very two pipes that serve as its base. Under the slide, you can split a piece of 60 mm pipe in two or adjust a channel of appropriate dimensions. Rubbing planes must first be smoothed to a metallic sheen.
Channels are installed on pipes along a common line, then welded with a short lintel from the corner. In its center there is a hole and a nut corresponding to the thread on the stud. The nut is welded in advance, but the insert needs to be welded only when the whole mechanism is assembled and the gear alignment is not broken.
The leading edge of the stud must fit into a slippery sleeve and be equipped with a handle. Therefore, the front edges of the table pipes are connected by an overhead U-shaped bracket, the middle part of which is made of a 30 mm corner, and the side ones are made of a steel strip. In the center, you need to drill a hole for the stud so that it passes freely.
Of the options for the sliding unit, we can recommend a conventional bearing, matched to the diameter of the stud and fixed in a homemade mandrel. It is also possible to install a thrust bearing on the back side of the angle. In any case, two nuts and a wide washer must be screwed onto the hairpin in order to be able to spread it inside the frame of the table base. In this case, the stud will rest against the wall of the mounting sleeve: on it you need to make a small core with a drill, as well as on the end of the screw, and insert a steel ball from the bearing.
As for the countertop, it can be any sheet material of sufficient strength. We recommend using thick (16–20 mm) plywood. It is better to fasten it with countersunk head screws, which are screwed into the channel bars, the main thing is that the edges of the bolts do not protrude from the inside. After assembly, a pencil is attached to the axis of the milling cutter and the table feed is scrolled so that the vector of its movement is outlined on the surface. Along the perpendicular set aside from this line in both directions, you need to fix the thrust bar.
Also, for convenience, it is recommended to place pieces of tape from a tape measure on a vertical stand, and to make one notch on the mounting sleeves with a chisel. All that remains is to check the machine in operation and start the long-awaited creative process.