In Tricks of the Trade

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One afternoon my wife called out to my shop with an urgent request.  She needed me to make a round plywood cake plate for a charity auction.  I assured her it would be no problem. I was in the middle of a project and didn’t want to spend all afternoon on this. Then it hit me: I could use my router table.

I ripped a 3/4″ wide strip of 3/8” hardwood to fit in the miter slot and drilled a pilot hole near one end for a heavy box nail inserted from the bottom. Then I taped the hardwood strip into my router table’s miter channel with the nail set at the distance of the circle’s radius from the edge of a straight bit.

I drilled a center hole in the soon-to-be cake plate, and positioned it on the nail. I held the edge of the plywood up while switching on the router, then lowered it onto the bit. After the bit bored through, I turned the plywood to cut a perfect circle. –Doug Bittinger


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