Thursday, July 26, 2012

Using the MFK-700 on the Guide Rail

The MFK-700 is nice for light routing jobs, like rounding over or chamfering the edges of a project, or flush trimming edging/nosing/banding.  The dust collection on it is pretty stellar so I like it for these reasons.

Thing is, it never had accessories to put it on a guide rail.  I needed to do this to rout the platen for the vacuum press before gluing up the veneered panels for Angle Madness as I needed to create a grid of V-grooves for air evacuation.  The panels are ready for glue and vacuum now, long video soon :)

Here was my quick experiment and ultimate solution.

If you use the guide stop with the OF-1400 (the blocks that let you attach the router to the guide rail), you can either use the guide rods of the OF-1400 or the MFK-700 (they are optional and come with the edge guide accessory).  Either way, you can use the rods to attach the MFK-700 to the guide stop.  The caveat is that the hole spacing on the guide stop is a bit narrower than that of the MFK-700's edge guide.  However, if you put the rods in with all the screws loose (on guide stop and router), you can then tighten them up.  No need to crank on the screws, just snug enough to keep things from moving.

Another thing that worked was to use just one rod; once tightened up, it was pretty solid.  I used two rods on the platen.

You'll want to put the MFK-700 half on the guide rail just like you would with the OF-1400.  So what's the "foot" replacement to better balance the router on the other side?

The thickness of the guide rail is nominally 5mm.  So I used some double-stick tape to pop a pair of 5mm Dominos on the bottom.  Worked great if a little hokey.  Note that I oriented the Dominos so the rounded edges would prevent them from catching.

I wanted a more 'elegant' solution so I put a Domino on the bandsaw to set the blade distance and ran a piece of scrap through.

I then drilled a hole through the 'skate' and mortised a recess for the head of a T-bolt.  I used a 5/16" T-bolt as that's what my jig hardware kit is.  I'm sure this would work with normal 1/4" T-bolts.  The recess doesn't have to be really exact: you just want to prevent the T from spinning.

Also remember to round the edges of this skate since you don't want it to catch.

There's a hole there in the vertical MFK-700 base... I didn't drill a new one :)  Just push the T-bolt through and put a nut on the other end.  To make it easier to attach and remove, I just used a T-nut from the jig kit since there isn't much clearance, but it's now very quick to pop the skate on and off.

A benefit of making the skate longer than the base is wide is that when I pushed the router off the end of the stock, the skate and guide stop balanced the router.

I'll be using it more on the rail now!


  • Anonymous said...

    Nice solution Paul-Marcel.

    I made the guide rail adapter that Jerry Work had suggested several years ago. His site is now down, but it worked pretty well.

    I ended up buying the MicroFence with the rail adapter for the 1010 and for the MFK-700. They work well.