This is a space saving router table top that I made to fit my Black & Decker Workmate.
This project evolved from a need to mount my router in an inverted position to trim parts cut out for rocking horses that I have designed using a template and a pattern cutting bit.
The photo shows the router table worktop in the upright position. This way I can change the router bits and adjust the depth.
The photo also shows the Workmate jaws opened up to a maximum width of 120mm, which is enough space to pass the router through.
The clamping width between the orange coloured inserts is 300mm.
This is when I had the idea of making a frame around a substitute base plate so that I could clamp the router in an inverted position, thus making a compact router table top.
To explain how it was made, I drew a Sketchup model.
I have an old Makita D-handle router, the one shown in the model is a Triton, for reference only. The router base for the Triton is slightly larger than mine, as you may observe if you study the model.
The parts are shown in different colours:
I used a plastic cutting board as a substitute base plate. It could also be Masonite or MDF if you prefer. Shown in the model as translucent so that you can see the router mounted underneath.
I removed the original base plate to mount the router on the cutting board, after drilling a hole, of course.
Green represents two pieces of 65mm wide skirting board to make up a thickness of 20mm. These were mounted on the router base plate so that I can clamp the router table top in the Workmate, using a pair of the orange plastic inserts provided, but not shown in the model.
The maximum clamping width is 300mm, so the width of the green frame around the base plate is 295mm.
Red represents the spacers to make up the thickness of the table top, which is shown in the next illustration.
For the table top work surface I used a piece of melamine coated particle board with a thickness of 18mm. Shown blue in the illustration. The cutting board base plate is 7mm, so I made the (red) spacers 11mm thick.
If at any time, I decide to change the base plate to Masonite or MDF, I would have to make new spacers of the correct thickness to match the thickness of the melamine particle board.
Now I can happily use the router to trim off shapes cut out for the rocking horse parts using a template and pattern cutting bit.
The next refinement to this table top router is to have a vacuum attachment, and to make an adjustable router fence.
There are so many router table plans, but I wanted something really quick and simple just to hold my ancient Makita D-handle router upside down.
This is what I made, a simple frame that could be clamped in my trusty B&D Workmate.
It works fine for template cutting bit where I don’t have to adjust the height too often, or change the bits.
Download a 3D file of the free router table plans if you have Sketchup
Download a print ready PDF file of the 3D exploded view.