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I recently had the pleasure of building a Mission style cherry coffee table using components from Osborne Wood Products. Osborne Wood products provided the legs, skirt boards and corner braces. I made the table top with a few eye catching features like bread board ends and pyramid shaped plugs.


Part II coming SOON A second video is being worked on now that details how the breadboard table top is contructed.



Details on making breadboard ends

"A breadboard end is a narrow piece that is mechanically joined to the end of a larger panel. The purpose is to support and maintain the rigidity of the panel, while allowing the panel to shrink or expand across the grain." - excerpt from an article on FWW.com by Mario Rodriguez titled All About Breadboard Ends



Step 1 - form a tenon on the end of the board by using the tablesaw and the router table
Breadboard Ends Breadboard Ends



Step 2 - the long tenon is fine-tuned to match the mortise that is made in the end piece.
Breadboard Ends Breadboard Ends



Step 3 - when there's a good fit between the breadboard end and the table top, square holes are made in the end of the breadboard to house the screws that attached the end to the table top.
Breadboard Ends Breadboard Ends



Step 4 - the breadboard ends are attached using glue on only the center 6 inches of the joint. The screws through the end (elongated holes) add strength and stability to the joint.
Breadboard Ends Breadboard Ends



Step 5 - pyramid headed plugs are formed using the crosscut sled. The plugs are glued into the square holes to hide the screws.
Breadboard Ends Breadboard Ends

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Coming Soon!

You will be able to buy the retail version of the Motorized Router Lift from MLCS Logo.

 

Here is a sneak peek at the greatest innovation in woodworking router tables and lifts! MLCS Woodworking and Eagle Lake Woodworking have spent two plus years designing, developing, and testing the world's first foot-activated MOTORIZED ROUTER LIFT for retail sale.

 

Please Note: the device shown in the video and pictured on this page is a FACTORY PROTOTYPE. The actual retail unit may differ slightly in appearance and function.



Some of the features of this new lift are:

The lift itself is motorized. There are no cranks, handles, etc. used to raise and lower the router. It comes with a control panel that mounts on a router table. The electronic "brain" in the control panel, and switches on the panel, allows one to use the variable speed control feature of the lift motor, change the direction of travel with the push of a button from up from to down and has a digital display that reads to .001 thousandths of an inch. The readout can be set to zero at any point on the travel.


For hands free use, the lift comes with a foot pedal that allows the user to both raise and lower the lift.

 

The Control Panel
The Advanced Control panel allows the operator to:
  • Set the speed of the lift
  • Zero out the height of the lift
  • See the current height, direction, and speed
  • Switch between inches and milimeters
  • Activate the lift up or down
  • Hold the lift (disables the lift to prevent accidental activation from the footswitch)
The lift shows precision to the .001 inches, and allows for micro-adjustment of the bit height at slow speeds.
Motorized Router Lift Control Panel
Bidirectional Footswitch
The footswitch allows the operator to raise or lower the lift while keeping both hands on the work piece.

Operations that were previously too difficult or too dangerous can now be perform on the router table - with better dust collection and improved safety.

You can turn your router table into an efficient and effective mortising machine. A simple jig that controls the movement of the work piece on top of the table, combined with raising the spinning bit via the footswitch, will yield perfect mortises.
Footswitch
The Lift
The lift is controlled by a powerful DC motor that transfers the power to the lift using cogged pulleys and belt. This effective transfer of power yields no backlash when adjusting height.

The lift has a depth stop that triggers a microswitch to stop the lift when the desired height is reached. The depth stop is used to set the maximum height that the bit can protrude above the table. This feature is useful for repeatable cuts and incremental passes.

The router motor requires no tools to mount in the lift!
Motorized Router Lift

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This project is a queen sized bed inspired by a Stickley Panel bed. I didn't have anything to go on other than the picture from the Stickley web site, and the overall dimensions. I set to work drawing up my own plans from these two bits of information.


The construction of the bed features through mortise and tenon joints connecting the horizontal rails to the posts. The headboard and the footboard have a frame and panel construction where vertical stiles contain the panels and connect the two horizontal stiles. The top horizontal stiles on the headboard and footboard have a broad inverted V shape that is characteristic of a number of Stickley pieces.


Update 5/30/09 - I am almost done with the first three videos for this series. I cover how to make the panels in part 1, how to make the horizontal rails in part 2, and how to make the vertical stiles and assemble the frame and panel section in part 3. If all goes well, all three parts should be released Sunday night (5/31/09)

Stickley Panel Bed in progress Stickley Panel Bed in progress
Stickley Panel Bed in progress Stickley Panel Bed in progress

Update 5/24/09 - Work on the bed is progressing nicely. I made the tenons on the horizontal rails using the crosscut sled and the bandsaw. The crosscut sled took care of the shoulder cuts, and the bandsaw cut off the cheeks. Overall, I'm please with this method, but I'd rather be using my tenon jig. The length of these piece prohibited the use of the tenon jig (too tall, they would hit the ceiling, and it would be a little akward).

Stickley Panel Bed in progress Stickley Panel Bed in progress
Stickley Panel Bed in progress Stickley Panel Bed in progress
Stickley Panel Bed in progress Stickley Panel Bed in progress

Update 5/17/09 - Filming of this project is underway. I've posted some in progress shots below. Stay tuned, I hope to have the first video in the series out soon. Please post any questions or comments you have about this poject.

Stickley Panel Bed in progress Stickley Panel Bed in progress
Stickley Panel Bed in progress Stickley Panel Bed in progress

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The Super Sled combines two of my best shop jigs!

 

I love my original crosscut sled, so when you (the viewers) asked me to make a video about how to make that sled, I started to think of ways to improve upon the existing design.

 

I regularly use two different sleds in my shop:
1. My crosscut sled which I use mainly for crosscutting, and cutting shoulder cuts on tenons.
2. Wood Magazines Universal Tablesaw Jig which I use exclusively for mitering.

 

While contemplating ways to improve on the design of my crosscut sled, I started to focus on the concept of combining the two sleds. I spent a lot of time modeling the new Super Sled in Google Sketchup and I feel I have come up with one of the most versatile crosscut / mitering sleds around. When you see the video for the construction of the sled, I think you'll be surprised at how easy it is to build for yourself!

 

The video for how to build the SuperSled will be filmed later this month (Feb 2009)

 

Crosscutting
The Super Sled has all the benefits of my original crosscut sled, including a t-track for adjustable stop blocks. The new sled uses a flip stop, so you can keep the stop in the same place, but flip it up out of the way to make other cuts in between.

With generous capacity to the left and right of the saw blade, the Super Sled can handle just about any crosscut. The main fence is extended out farther on the left side of the blade allowing you to use the flip stop for long cuts.
Mitering
I really love mitering with Wood Magazines Universal Tablesaw jig which is why I wanted to incorporate all the features of this jig into the Super Sled. The Universal Tablesaw jig needs to be switched from one side of the blade to the other when doing complementary miters. With an identical setup on both sides of the blade, you can easily miter on either side of the blade.

The fence used for mitering has a t-track for mounting a stop block or hold downs and can be positioned any where from 0 to about 70 degrees.
Versatility
I designed the Super Sled with versatility in mind. The four slots in the main board of the fence function the same as t-tracks, and allow for the inclusion of stop blocks, the miter fence, and other add-on jigs like a tenon or box joint jig.

The main board for the super sled is 1/2 inch plywood. I went with 1/2 inch plywood so I wouldn't loose very much blade height capacity. The four slots in the main board are 3/8 inch wide from the top, and have a 3/4 inch wide shallow recess in the bottom and will accomodate a standard 5/16 inch t-bolt.

 

Update - 3/22/2009: There are now two Accessory videos available. The Stop Block and the Tenon Jig have been added to the video collection.


Tenon Jig Tenon Jig

 

Update - 4/05/2009: Mitering Fence Video Released - The latest video in the Super Sled series shows the construction of the fence and two different kind of stop blocks. The setup process for mitering with the fence is also shown.


Tenon Jig Tenon Jig

 

A friend of Eagle Lake writes an informative Instructables article describing the steps to make his souped up version of the Super Sled - Joe Laviolette made some really cool additions to the Super Sled design - one notable improvement is the concept of a removable zero clearance insert. Read all about Joe's sled and how to make it in this well documented pictorial tutorial:
http://www.instructables.com/id/How-to-make-a-better-cross-cut-sled/

 

A friend of Eagle Lake offers some Super Sled improvements: Bob McCormick came up with two great suggestions for improving the usability of the Super Sled. The first suggestion was a great find - a right angled t-track that has a t-track on the top and a second t-track at a right angle to the first. Bob mounted this t-track to the main rear fence after cutting a rabbit. Having a a t-track on the top and face of the fence opens up some nice possibilities for mounting accessories.


Tenon Jig Tenon Jig

The second improvement Bob came up with is great - he designed a simple solution to stow the miter fences on the back of the main fence. He installed some threaded inserts into the back of the main fence where he can mounted the miter fences by using a thumbscrew to hold it in place.


Tenon Jig Tenon Jig

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Here's my interpretation of Gustav Stickley's No. 603 tabouret. This little round table works great in almost any decor.

 

The construction of the table looks deceptively simple, but it has it's fair share of challenges. You have to be accurate and precise in the execution of the joinery to make the through tenons and interlocking cross members fit perfect.

 

There is a multi-part video series for this project (Part 1 was released 12/7/08, the rest of the videos will be coming soon).  In the video, I make two of these tables side by side - each with very different methods.  I compare and contrast how to build an authentic version of this table versus an "imposter" table.  I think you'll enjoy seeing the choices in materials and construction that goes into each distinct method.

 

 

Update 12-12-2008 - I added a PDF to the file downloads that has all the dimensions for this table. The measured drawings are also in the picture gallery.

 

Video Series

Released Description  
12/07/2008 Part 1 - This video introduces the project and details the construction of the round top. Cutting circles on the router table using the motorized router lift is shown. Basic veneering techniques are also show.
12/13/2008 Part 2 - This video details the construction of the legs. I show two different methods for constructing a leg that show quartersawn white oak grain on all four sides.
12/14/2008 Part 3 - This video details two different mortise and tenon joints for the legs. The authentic table features legs that have a traditional through-mortise and tenon joint connecting the lower cross-members to the legs. The imposter table has a fake through tenon and uses loose tenon joinery to connect the lower cross-members to the legs.
12/18/2008 Part 4 - This video details the construction of the lower crossmembers. I'll show you how to make tenons on the MLCS horizontal router table, and use pattern routing to form identical curves in all the pieces. The interlocking crossmembers fit together with a precise dado.
12/26/2008 Part 5 - This video details the construction of the upper crossmembers. The authentic table has a dovetail joint that connects the upper cross member to the legs, while the imposter table uses a simple stub tenon and open mortise. The interlocking crossmembers fit together with a precise half-lap joint.
12/27/2008 Part 6 - This video details the assembly of both tables. You will see how loose tenon joinery can simplify the assembly of the imposter table. The benefits of a successful dry fit are stressed. For a lifetime of service, the mortise and tenon joints are pinned using dowels.
1/11/2008 Part 7 - This video details how to apply the stain and finish to the tables using simple techniques and off-the-shelf products. My simple finish schedule is easy to follow and gives great results.

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