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MF-TB router-jigsaw table


This is one of the possible modifications of the MFTB, please note that this is my own design, and that it is not manufactured, sanctioned or endorsed by Festool. Nor Festool, nor i can be held responsible for anything that happens should you build this for yourself!

Now let's get to fun part, i purposely built an MFTB 4 because i wanted to make a  portable router (and by the same occasion a jigsaw table) that would fit on systainers, some routing operations are simply safer on a table where you can hold the workpiece with both hands, or faster when by example you need to do allot of chamfers etc...

here is a link to a Youtube video

systainer router table portable

The no1 condition is practicality, to be practical you need 1 table for both tools,  hooking the tools under the table would need to be fast and toolless and you would still need to have easy access to the controls.

So lets start the build process,

on the picture below you have 3 panels that make up the successive layers of the top, the white panel is 5mm Trespa, a very durable and smooth composite material, the middle panel is 5mm plywood, because the carvex jigsaw baseplate has a 5mm ridge, and the right panel is 7mm plywood. Together, with the tolerances and glue, they make a 18mm panel which is also the thickness of the MFTB tops!

router table tops

I played around with both tools, in my case an OF1010 router and a Carvex jigsaw to find the best possible position for both, things to deal with were the power cord and vac hose, but also being able to still open the top lid with the tools attached under it. Once i determined the best position i printed out a template of the recesses i had to cut away in order to fit the tool bases in them.

homemade router table template

(Update 9-7-2012) On popular demand i added a more detailed plan of the layout, the image below shows the underside of the top, the top is 18mm thick, the green part is 7mm deep, and the red part is 12mm deep (5mm deeper than the green part) This works for the OF 1010 router and PS400 jigsaw

templateThen i cut out the deepest layer for the carvex base, and drew it on the 5mm plywood plate.


template

Then i cut it out with a jigsaw. i proceeded the same way with the rest of the template on the 7mm plywood plate.

carvex mftb

Then using as much clamps as i could i glued these three plates together, i used wood glue  between the plywood, and contact cement between the ply and Trespa.

router table clamping Once dry, i placed the tools in their recesses and figured out the best and safest position for the toggle clamps that i would use to hold them in place, once that was done i cut away a hole through the top with my widest router bit, and also a hole for the jigsaw blade. 

Meanwhile i also made a hardwood edge around the top as explained in the MFTB manual and did all the other necessary operations for it to fit on the MFTB.

I also needed to attach two T-track slots on the top to hold the fence system, i made a groove with a router in 4 passes because the Trespa is extremely hard.

router table routing I glued the T tracks in place with contact cement. I tried to have about 300mm between the center of the tracks.

Next step was to make a simple fence, for this i chose 12mm mdf, it is about 340mm wide, 80mm high and 70mm deep, with a 36mm hole in the back to for the vac hose.

router table fence

The fence can be used for routing and sawing, since the hole for the router is placed to the back of the table, you can also turn around the fence and rout from behind, that way you have more free space between the fence and router bit.

of1010 router table

I had to adapt the MFTB by making larger openings in the side in order for the hoses and cables to pass through, this actually also allows me to pass my hands and change the settings.

The opening for the hose and handle i cut in the side is 102mm wide and 200mm deep

systainer router table

This table is designed for light work on site, but also in the shop. It already happened that i wanted to make a curved cut in the shop, but my bandsaw had a wide ripping blade installed, so it was faster to hook up the jigsaw and do it on there. Same goes for the router table, sometimes it is set up for a certain task, and you need to do something else, but don't want to lose the setting, then it's easy to take this one out and do it on here. I would also suggest to make sure it cannot tip over by placing it against a wall and locking it on heavy systainers or a shop vac.

carvex table

jigsaw table

Last few tips:

  • work safely, don't get your fingers nears blades or cutters!
  • wear eye and hearing protection
  • i found that setting the jigsaw to the lowest speed gives a smoother cut with thinner materials, increase the speed as the material gets thicker
  • make sure the tools cannot come loose
  • don't turn the tools on directly, i hook them to the vac and turn them on with the vac
  • use a dust extractor
  • limit the routing to chamfering, round overs or small dados, don't ask too much from this little table. certainly don't go raising panels with it!
  • choose the correct jigsaw blade, each operation has it's blade. by example cutting curves with a straight cut blade will overheat and ruin it, and create allot of vibration.

You can get the plans for the MFTB base here