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I'm relatively new to router tables.
Can anyone tell me why all router tables show an insert plate and why the router cannot simply be screwed directly underneath the router table with countersunk screws from above. If I hinge the entire table, I can access the collet to change cutter-bits and adjust the height directly on the router. Also, why is it necessary to build elaborate fences with 2 guide rails, when pivoting a fence on a pivot say 16" to one side of the bit opening, clamping the other side, and a fence cut-out over the bit opening, will suffice ?
 

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Most tables have a fixed top and an insert to mount the router.

This one hinges and the router screws directly to the table like you mention.

http://www.mlcswoodworking.com/shop...es/router_table_2.html#precision_table_anchor

I have a fixed table top which I prefer over a hinged top. I end up using the table top for other "stuff" and it would be a hassle to move the "stuff" all the time and also a hassle if I were not able to use the router table for this "stuff" storage. Personal preference.

You are not the first to come up with the idea of a pivoting fence.

http://www.woodworkingtalk.com/f27/pivoting-routing-fence-51847/

I think this works well if you are doing edge profiles or any work which does not require a large distance between the router bit and the fence such as using the router table to rout a groove in a board. Need a lot of space at the far end of the fence.

I use an Incra fence. I like this, very easy to set, very easy to repeat a setting. Another personal preference.
 

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John
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I'm relatively new to router tables.
Can anyone tell me why all router tables show an insert plate and why the router cannot simply be screwed directly underneath the router table with countersunk screws from above. If I hinge the entire table, I can access the collet to change cutter-bits and adjust the height directly on the router. Also, why is it necessary to build elaborate fences with 2 guide rails, when pivoting a fence on a pivot say 16" to one side of the bit opening, clamping the other side, and a fence cut-out over the bit opening, will suffice ?
The main reason people use router plates is to conserve their depth of cut capability. If your table top is an inch or so thick (many are thicker) you would loose the difference between the thickness of an aluminum or phenolic plate (usually 1/4 to 3/8" thick) and the thickness of the table. You could relieve the area of the base of the router from the underside of the top but, depending on the table material, would also weaken the support for the router. :smile:
 

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Also a plate makes bit changes easier. My router is screwed directly to the table. :thumbsup:
 

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My router table is nothing elaborate but it works great. A lot of stuff doesn't need anything more than a straight edge clamped to the top for a fence like this shot.



I did make a little more of a fence for when I need more height than the 3/4".

The top is on hinges and the router is screwed on as you suggested, with countersunk screws from the top. It is recessed from the bottom so I don't lose much depth of cut, sorry no pics of details. But simple works for me although I would like to make one with more adjustments and such.
 
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