Router Leveling Table

Do we have a sled for the router that can be used flatten large pieces of wood, for those of us not yet cleared on the MultiCAM? And if not, would @Team_Woodshop be amenable to allocating funds to build one? Something like this

I feel ike this is something that a LOT of people would get a lot of use out of

Yes I have seen a couple of people using an item like that. I believe it is made out of wood and I am not sure where exactly it is stored in the woodshop.

I think people just make their own as needed. Having a dedicated one would take up a lot of room that we don’t have at the moment and those aluminum rails/gantry would be bent within the week of them being installed.

I was planning on using black iron pipe: easy assembly, relatively cheap, and easy to replace/repair

I made an 8’ long one last weekend. It took perhaps 20 minutes to assemble.

Easy to make and cheap to assemble: 2 straight 1x4 boards 2+ times as long as your project is wide and two pieces of 1/4” plywood 10” by 1/2 the board length. My project piece was about 3.5 feet across, so I went with 8 foot boards.

Cut a triangle out of the ends of the plywood then countersink screws to attach ply to boards. The two triangles make a hole for the router bit to fit through. The base plate of the router is screwed to the two plywood pieces. Bigger opening will allow the collet wrench to work without having to detach the router.

Why use two pieces of plywood? More economical, and makes cutting the router hole easy since 1/2 is cut from each piece.

The sled then rides on a rim of wood around your project. I made a 5” and a 4” rim for my project out of the same plywood half sheet. I also propped the project on top of some plywood sheets to avoid having to cut a third set of rim boards for the final pass.

The sled runs across the project piece and holds the router at a level height above the ground/table.


Not too router bit friendly if you run the router too far out to the side and hit the pipe with the carbide bit. You might put a wood block on the bottom of the sled at either end to act as a stop and limit travel to between the pipes only.

In my case, I build my frame out of plywood strips and they came right up against my project. I routed a few notches in the frame by accident as I worked, so plywood was a good choice for me.

My frame was the same height on all four sides so I could route N-S and E-W and all directions in between, including sliding the sled over the corners. Pipe would not allow that, but would be rigid and very straight.

On my final pass, I intentionally tried to route radially from center to edge and leave a very slight texture to make it look hewn rather than perfectly flat. This would have been possible, but more difficult, using pipe rails.

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My design that I was kicking around had two main features:

  1. a series of bolts that would allow you to adjust the height of the sled for thicker materials
  2. a dual sled design. by that i mean that the sled would rest on rails, and those rails would rest on a second set of rails.

In answer to your

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ok, thank you for a clear and succinct answer

I did some googling today and a reasonable [personal] sled could be built with a single sheet of birch plywood from Central for $35 and some Multicam time.

ETA: If you’re not Multicam certified then a number of us would be happy to help if you create the drawings.

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At that point why not throw the slab on the multicam?

Because the underside is not remotely flat.

That what shims are for. If it wont sit flat for the Multicam it wont sit flat for a router sled. The router sled is just a less sophisticated Multicam.


Because I’m not cleared in the MultiCAM?

The multicam relies on a vacuum bed which requires at least some semblance of flatness

Not necessarily.
It relies on the part staying still and not moving and tries to accomplish that as a convenience we have a vacuum table upgrade. It’s still very possible to cut something that is secure by other means. Hell with light cuts I bet you that thing is heavy enough to stay put just with its own weight

it weighs upwards of 100 lbs. that’s just over 10 pounds per square inch (36 inch circle)

Yeah but that whole 100 lbs is holding on to every fraction of an inch you are cutting.
Point is it can definitely be fixed to the table in other ways than just vacuum

All other arguments aside, at least a half dozen slabs have been surfaced on the multicam in the past year or so.

Id encourage you to get certified on the multicam and surface your slab that way. I believe February’s class is right around the corner.

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At this point, because the Multicam is down for at least a week :wink: