Using a Wood Router

Using a Wood Router


A wood router is a valuable tool for any woodworker. A router shapes, cuts and decorates wood. A router can be a woodworkers best friend or worst enemy depending on how careful one is in using this electric tool. Routers can be dangerous and have been known to cause damage to fingers and other body parts, but if proper care is taken, a wood router is an essential part of woodworking. If you are thinking about purchasing a router, and you need a few helpful tips for use, read through the following steps to learn how you too can master the skill of using a router.

Step 1

Hold the two handles firmly when using your router to control movement. Move the router from left to right, pulling the tool toward you rather than pushing it away.

Step 2

Always use a sharp router bit for clean edges. There are between 20 to 30 different diameters, shapes and sizes to choose from, but making sure the bit is sharp is of utmost importance.

Step 3

Climb cut, or work your router clockwise, if you are cutting near the northeast or southwest corners. Counterclockwise, which is suggested as the normal cutting direction, can cause wood to chip at the corners.

Step 4

Prevent your work piece from rocking by screwing a support board to the workbench. The board should be the same thickness as the workpiece and must sit right up against it. Screw a stop at the end of the workpiece to prevent any slipping.

Step 5

Router your cuts in more than one stage to prevent burning. Some projects require the removal of a large amount of wood. The friction of trying to take off too much wood at once can heat up the bit.

Step 6

Before making any router cut, adjust the depth of the bit. Router bits have a multitude of infinite adjustments, and can go deep or shallow.

Tips and Warnings

  • Use ear plugs to protect your ears from the loud sound of the router motor. Wear a mask to prevent dust from getting into your lungs, but most importantly, protect your eyes from flying wood chips. Always unplug your router when changing bits. Router bits are sharp and if the tool accidentally turns on, you can cause considerable damage to your body.

Things You'll Need

  • Work bench
  • Support board
  • Wood router
  • Router bits
  • Ear plugs
  • Gloves
  • Mask
  • Goggles
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About this Author

Lacy Enderson received an AA Degree in Behavioral Science and a BS Degree in Religion/Psychology. Lacy is the author of, "Addiction: A Personal Story" and "So You Want To Lose Weight But You Can't Stop Eating." Her articles have appeared in Discipleship Journal and

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