Router Table Sled – featuring simple spiral on square stock

You have probably seen this piece of shop hardware in my Conch Shell video, but as I promised, here is a dedicated video about the sled and another way to use it. Enjoy, and remember to be inspired!

I have used this sled in two other projects, not counting the fluted piece shown here, and I believe that this has a lot more potential for tricky projects and ideas. There are some concrete things that I would/will add to my sled.

Router Table Sleds Improvements

Foremost, I will add a holddown on a threaded rod in order to deliver pressure over a larger surface, thus increasing stability. Also, a wooden plate will not leave marks on wooden pieces.

Secondly, I want to add more t-nuts, and place them strategically for two applications – to allow more positions for the toggle clamp, and to use a versatile stop system.

For the toggle clamp, I imagine that five positions will do. The one seen used on the flute piece, i.e. centered, the one seen in the snipet about moving the sled and its mirrored counterpart, i.e. at the ends of the slot, and one position in between,  slightly tilted.

As far as stops go, I am still imagining things – that is to say I am contemplating solutions – and I do not know whether I can describe them properly before I actually make them. What I am thinking about is taking strips of plywood, rougly 2″ or 5cm wide and 8″ or 20cm long, and rout slots into them along the short side. Then I can lay them on the sled and use wingbolts or something similar to put them in place using the already present t-nuts. I guess the number of angles avaliable will be the main problem here, so maybe a different shape, like a triangle or circle piece with a radial groove might work better. But right now the idea has not left the drawing board.

And third, I am on the fence about the fence, i.e. the back board that serves as a runner against the table’s edge. Is has its uses, yes, but I think I could get the same and better results with a screw-on fence using t-nuts, and a table that comes without any obstructions if I need it to. So I would chose a base that extends over the edge of the router table and screw a straight runner to it where appropriate. It would also improve the storability of the router table sled.

One other thing I would do differentlyis using a thinner base (the one I used has 15mm) in order to get more bit clearance and thus more flexibility. I will not do that right away, though, but it is something I want to try when I build a new sled after testing the first one to death.

Of course I will keep you up to date, and you will see the router table sled used in another project soon!

As always, thanks for watching, and reading, and remember to be inspired!

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