If you want to learn how to make wood molding with a router, it can be a little bit hard while only using a router and its bits –although it’s not impossible, and in this small guide, you will learn how to do it the right way.
Follow a couple of steps can help you reach your goal.
Step one: Look for suitable stock
Abandoned boards are overlooked but being aware of how many linear feet of molding you can get out of salvaged boards can help you save a lot of money.
And you’ll probably be good with the boards you find as long as you:
- Avoid boards that have fasteners attached to them which will be hard to completely remove.
- Skip boards that have been chemically-treated such as pressure-treated yellow pine.
- Pick a wood species that matches the kind of finish that you have in mind.
- Avoid cedar and redwood –or any wood that would be hard to accept the paint- if you’re going to apply paint to your workpiece.
- Work with slightly thicker boards than the target thickness if you’ll be using a thickness planer.
- Find boards that match your target thickness if you won’t be using a thickness planer.
- Stock up on more than you need as you’ll surely find hidden defects when you start milling.
Step two: Get your stock ready to be milled
When you’re trying to make a molding with a router, make sure that you free your wood from any metal objects. Otherwise, you’ll ruin your machine.
You can use the help of a cheap metal detector by swiftly moving it along all four sides of the board.
Step three: Setting up the scene for making a molding with a router
Make sure that everything is secure and tightly locked in position.
You can create a little drop-insert for your table saw. Alternatively, you can use a board with a hole in it on top of a sturdy sawhorse.
Make sure to use the right screws to mount the router to the surface. Think of it as though you’re making a huge router plate.
Choose bearing-guided bits in order to deal with setting up a guide fence.
Tip: Buying router bits in sets is a lot cheaper than buying them individually.
If you’ll be working with longer pieces, set up an out-feed surface to support it. This will make your work more comfortable and safer.
Step four: Take your safety measures
Wear hearing protection, remove any loose jewelry and clothing, and wear a respirator if the dust collection system on your device isn’t that effective.
Before you turn on your machine, make sure you’re protecting your ears, eyes, hands, and lungs.
Step five: Start making your moldings with a router
Don’t attempt to run narrow pieces through the table saw as it can be quite dangerous.
Put the shape you want on the wider board first using your router. This way, you’ll mill the profile on the side of the board, cut it off the board, then repeat the process.
Before you mill everything, try to adjust and test the bit height on a test piece to maximize the accuracy of your cuts.
If you’re looking to speed the cutting process up, put the desired profile on either side of the board.
When you run the workpiece through the table saw against the fence, the profiled edges will cut down the time you need to half.
Tip: Repeat the routing and sawing until you have more pieces than you actually need.
Doing all of your millings in one go will spare you the need to set everything up again and will reduce the possibility that your trim will not match with the one you did later.