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7 Piece router bit box

After seeing a router bit box project on another site I thought I would make my own. I have recently been sent a set of 7 1/2" bits for review, from the kind folks at the Whiteside Machine Company, these are great bits.

It is important to keep your cutters away from dust and moisture, also and most importantly - keep them off their edges, if you cutters are lying around in your router case, getting knocked about - they will becoming slowly blunt. This box we are going to make is great, because not only does it keep them in order and easily accessible but it keeps them upright and off their cutting edges.

The first step is to cut all of the sides to length, and dimension them. I'm using some scrap mahogany I have lying around as it is durable and looks great, any other wood can be used though.

I'm cutting the lengths accurate with my Elecktra Beckum sliding saw. You could however do them with a tennon saw.

Here you can see that one end is lower. This will allow the sliding lid to slide freely in the grooves I will cut.

The size of my bit box is not important, you have to determine that when making your own. Consider the following:

  • How many router bits are going to be stored
  • How wide are they (Simple twin flute cutters, or big panel raisers?)
  • How tall are they? (Some can be quite big)

I am going to join my 4 sides with dowel joints, here you can see me preparing the joints using the spectacular dowelmax jig which makes easy and accurate work of the joints.

This is a good choice, as they are square. This is always useful when it comes to glue ups.

I am using only 2 dowels in each corner, this is more than sufficient.

Before we glue the box up, I need to run some grooves in 3 of the sides (Not including the shorter one) I will make a lid from 6mm ply, which will slide in these.

I am using a 5mm cutter in my router table. This is a very effective and safe way to cut these.

I am using some polyurethane glue to hold the sides together. You may notice the groove on the end part can be seen from the edge of the box - this is me making a silly mistake. You can avoid this by plunging the wood onto the cutter and removing it before it reaches the other side.

TIP: Polyurethane glue can stain your hands, and is VERY sticky (Would be as its glue!) - DONT try:
- Texting someone with sticky fingers
- Using an expensive digital camera

Wear disposable gloves!

(Sorry about the dodgy camera angle)

Here you can see the box in the bessey uni-clamps. I will leave it "to cook" for a few hours. Time to go and have some lunch.

You can see the special polyurethane glue is foaming out of the joints. I will remove this once it has hardened with a sharp chisel.

I am using my random orbit sander, with a fine grit to smooth the sides, removing any remaining glue residue and also unevenness.

This will leave a lovely smooth finish.

I used a hand plane to even out the tops and bottoms of the sides. (WOW A HAND TOOL!!) - It did a mighty fine job aswell!

Back to the router table now, I have installed a bearing guided rebate cutter in the router, and formed a rebate in the bottom of the box. This will later accept the base.

You may have noticed that the rebate cutter had left "heavily rounded" corners. Its easy, all you need is a good sharp chisel. Which will square the corners up. Hey presto!

Also, you may notice that part of the dowel has been "removed" when forming the rebate. This isn't really a big problem, but it could have been avoided if I had placed the dowels higher up.

I am using some pine for the base, nothing fancy here. Just some glue to and pins hold it in place.

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