Round overs with Router


Shopdog19
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I am relatively new to wood working and very new to router use, I have 6 long grain cutting boards I am making from a recycled hard wood counter top and I would like to round over the edges, should I do this free hand with a router or on my router table? Which would give me a better result?  

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Hi Shopdog

 

If the cutters have a guide bearing and the cut is small (if its big build up to the final cut in stages) freehand would be fine and a really flexible way of doing it. Router table would be fine too and best if you have miles of work to do. 

If the router is new to you do the boring stuff and review all the safety info and practice on some scraps. Which router did you buy?

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I usually round all the corners on a cutting board, especially the 4 thickness corners. This is easier with a handheld router using a bearing guided bit. Practice on some scrap before you tackle the cutting boards.

The router table is good for repeated cuts on long edges but standing up the board on edge to run the thickness corner is tricky and can be dangerous. If you clamp the board down and have both hands to balance and guide the router you can rout 2 corners, reclamp and rout the other 2.

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you could do it either way.If you are new to routers I might suggest opting for the freehand method. A round-over is one of the most basic bits and easy to use.  It will give you some good experience with freehand router work.  Being a beginner you should clamp the cutting board firmly to a work surface so that you can keep both hands on the router. I usually make the initial cut just shy off my desired depth and then make one final pass around at final depth so that I'm only removing a very small amount of material with the last pass.  This will help to keep you from having to sand away a bunch of burn marks.  You're gonna have to clamp, move and re clamp a bunch but until you get the hang of it it"s the safest way in my opinion.

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Cordless? What kind? Does it have much power and decent battery life?

It's a ryobi that came in a kit. A friend bought me a kit after doing some trim work in his house. It doesn't last a long time, but it's battery life depends upon how much material you want to remove. I can get three cutting boards done with one charge. It's 18 volt NiCad. Here is a pic:

post-6372-0-01756500-1364143324_thumb.jp

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I think that using the router table will be the easiest way to do this.  It saves clamping and then moving the clamps to get completely around the work.  I always use the router table whenever I can.  Use a bearing bit and rout the endgrain first.  Take small bites in several passes.

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