The Week That Was #2: Repositioning, Veneering, and a Cart

The week that was #2? I’ve got to think of a better name for this no video picture series. Does it even need a name? All of the images are in chronological order so it’s a good look at how the week went.

Anyway, this was a short week of actually working in the shop. Tyler Kay’s nanny had a day and a half off and I had a bunch of random odd stuff to get done for the business and the house. To start this off on a positive note, Tyler Kay and Cleo have really become buddies.

Back in the shop I decided to tackle one of those little things that I’ve been putting off for so long. I’ve wanted to rotate the router lift in my table saw wing for a couple years now. Rotating it so that the front is on the same side as the front of the table saw will put me on the front side of the machine for use. This allows me to free up the right side to be used differently. I should have rotated this in my last shop but never got around to doing it. When I moved to this shop I had the drum sander on the right side of the table saw, which never really worked out in this space due to the orientation of the router table.

Rotating the router table in the extension wing will allow me to move my stand alone router table next to the table saw router table and keep all of the associated bits and wrenches in the same spot. Then I can put the drum sander where the router table was. This change is one of those things that I couldn’t really figure out in the layout planning stages and only realized after being in the space for a bit. Also, it’s just swapping the location of two tools so I really don’t consider it rearranging ;)

After removing all of the screws on top of the extension wing I realized the top was also glued to the frame below. I guess my thinking was that the screws were used as clamps until the glue dried.

Since it all needs to come out in one piece the front rail tube needs to be removed from the saw. Then the front bolts can be removed.

The wing is free after removing a few other odd items I’ve attached to it over the years.

I decided it would be much easier to cut the wing to 27” in length to fit the space after rotating it rather than remounting the lift to a new location and cutting a new hole. So to use the saw again the front rail needed to be attached. I used 3/4” plywood as spacer blocks to locate and clamp the rail in place and added a couple bolts to the bottom just to make sure nothing shifted mid cut.

And then cut the wing to 27” in length.

On the offcut you can see a notch that needs to be cut in the new left side of the wing. This is for a center support that the table saw has for the wing.

Odd situations like this are generally where hand tools are most handy (for those of us who love power tools). A quick cut with a hand saw and not so quick cut with a thin kerf fret saw.

Here you can see another notch that was needed to straddle the rear leg of the extension wing when I first built it. With the wing rotated 90 degrees this notch is now unused on the right side. Before dropping the wing into place I setup a roller support underneath to help hold the weight of the wing while I leveled and attached it. Also, the front rail tube needed to come off once again for the front side mounting hardware of the wing.

Level is actually irrelevant in this case. I just need the wing to be on the same plane as the saw top. An adjustable square was used to get the distance between the top of the saw table and the top of the front rail angle iron.

Then the wing is positioned at the right height and clamped to the saw and to the front angle iron piece.

New holes are drilled into the wing and the front side is bolted into place.

The back side of the wing is where the cut was made so there was no frame piece below the top. A new piece of 3/4” ply is added and then the top is positioned and secured the same way as the front.

And that’s it for this change. Quick and easy. I’m not worried about the empty space to the right. It’s not necessary for material support when using the table saw or the router table.

There’s plenty of access on the front side to operate the lift and the lever doesn’t hit anything.

On the back side I mounted the electrical box for this tool island and zip tied the rest of the wires up off the ground. The black power wire on the ground is for my air compressor that I’m moving away from this island.

And finally the router table can be pushed over to it’s new home. This is where it should have been from the beginning. Now both router tables are in the same location. All I need to do now is build router bit storage and get all of my router table bits inside this cabinet and out of the CNC base cabinet. I’ll save that for another day.

Shims. A must have for four foot items. Glue sand paper to one side of the shim for better long term holding.

Now the drum sander can go where the router table was. This is a much better spot for several reasons. First, it’s setup and ready to go and secondly it’s a better tool to share the CNC electrical circuit. I have a 240v drop for the CNC machine and I’m using one leg of that circuit for a 120v tool. Sometimes I would need to use the router table that was plugged in while the CNC machine was still running. The drum sander is a tool that I doubt I’ll ever need to use while the CNC is running so it’s a better option for that 120v plug.

Also, I kept forgetting to move the dust collection hose from the router table back to the CNC machine when I used the CNC. With this setup I permanently connected the CNC machine to the dust collection and used the top port on the bandsaw to be movable between the bandsaw and drum sander. Much more convenient and obvious to see and switch the connection.

The table saw still has full range of motion with the fence, the homemade lever router lift table is in a more layout friendly orientation, and the metal router table and cabinet is in a more layout friendly position. I rarely use the fence on the homemade table so pushing longer pieces through on an angle isn’t a concern. I generally keep a flush trim bit in the homemade table and use profile or shaping bits on the metal table.

Everyone says kids grow up so fast and I never really understood it until I became a dad. Mid week cuteness from Tyler Kay..

She’s getting the “What’chu talkin bout, Willis?” look down pat! Her personality is so much fun.

A handful of years ago I couldn’t find any hardwoods within a few hours of my house. That changed drastically. Now all I have in my shop inventory is a bunch of beautiful hardwoods that I don’t want to cut up for prototyping or general shop stuff. So a small batch of dimensional lumber was on the menu. A few 1×6 and 2×4 spruce boards.

Speaking of beautiful hardwoods.. I moved a single piece of wenge and got another not-so-fun splinter. I said last week that if you look at it the wrong way you will get a splinter. I have no desire to use wenge ever again. I have some 8/4 boards left over for $6 a board foot if anyone local is interested.

Such a beautiful day! Working with the large door open is such a treat.

The dimensional lumber was for a cart for the Pantorouter. I made a few cart designs in SketchUp but I kept getting stumped on the hoses for dust collection. I want this cart to have an integrated cyclone separator and a shopvac. I figured the best, an much more fun, way to finalize the design would be to build a prototype. This would allow me to work out any kinks and give the prototype with the old Pantorouter to it’s next owner. This is about as messy as I can stand working in the shop. A quick 10 minute cleanup is almost necessary at this point.

Still enough material left over to build the final version. These sawhorses are from the video I made in 2013 by the way. Still taking abuse.

Jointed and planed to remove the rounded corners and establish consistent dimensions.

Eight joints cut in just a few minutes. The Pantorouter is such a versatile tool for joinery and the whole point of making a cart is to make everything Pantorouter related very convenient to use.

Dry assembly to check everything. Looks good.

A little glue and clamps to make the structure rigid.

Add the casters and it’s time to leave the shop for daddy duty.

Mornings are always fun :)

I’m having gutters installed on the house and shop. They came late Wednesday to run all the gutter lengths and installed late Friday afternoon. I didn’t take any finished installation pics for some reason but I did get a pic of the shop gutter on the ground. A straight 40′ run of gutter for the shop. That’s pretty neat.

The next day was another short work day. Plywood added to the top of the cart.

And then my friend Jeremy came over to cut some veneer on the bandsaw. He’s making 16 chess board boxes with 2.5” squares. That means the playing surface will be a 20” square. The veneer stock he made was 10” wide and greater than the capacity of his bandsaw. We sliced as many 1/8” thick veneers as possible with what he brought. The wood is walnut and hickory.

Here’s Jeremy reflecting on the completed work…or just playing on his phone. I think someone recently published an article about being addicted to the phone…. hmm…..

This was the second batch of veneers we cut for that job so 100% yield wasn’t necessary. The bottom stack is enough perfect pairs for 9 boards and the top stack was extra that had some type of defect that didn’t make the cut.

Back to the cart. I added basic, temporary mounts to get the cyclone and shopvac positioned. Too much wasted space here as I need to add drawers above. I also need to tweak the bucket and vac positions to get optimal hose placement so nothing binds or restricts movement of the Pantorouter.

Something more like this.. This is a good enough stopping point where all my design questions are answered. Next week I’ll start recording.

Have a great week everyone!


  1. I’ve never been one for blogs and such but yours has won me over. Keep up the great work, I look forward to any and all projects you document

  2. Hey Jay, thanks for another interesting blog, you’ve already given me so many ideas for how to arrange my garage/workshop and lots of other things. Great to see how your little girl is doing also with the dogs. Please keep up the good work

  3. Your daughter is so darn cute, I hope that you will include her in more of your videos. All kids are so much fun at that age and so happy for you that you get to be there for her “adventures”.

  4. Did you ever write anything about the metal router cabinet/table. I think you mentioned you would during your move into the new shop. I understand if it was a blur with all that was going on during that time. Anyway , I would like to know your pros and cons on it. I am trying to decide if I want to build a cabinet/table or buy that one.

    Yes they do grow up fast. You are very fortunate to be around more while she is at home. I am sure you ready know this ; ) . She is adorable and will be breaking hearts in three counties before long,Hahahahaha.

    Did you see the irony in Bents Woodworking posting videos of your nesting chair build on Facebook. After you suggested we don’t spend so much time on social media? I thought it was pretty funny myself. I completely agree with what you were saying but I found that hilarious none the less.

    Have a great weekend and enjoy those garage doors being open.

  5. The house slippers set the theme for Daddy Time. Always enjoy your builds. Built the vacuum filter box. Amazed the amount of dust it collects from sanding on the top. The vacuum on the sander works well but with the filters greatly impressed.

  6. Never thought of using the wing of my table saw as a router table.
    What a space saver.
    I’ll now have to work out the logistics of getting it done.

  7. Enjoyed the blog. Just wait until Tyler’s attitude fully comes out! My almost 3 year old’s attitude is in full force, and its a cute and frustrating all at the same time.

  8. That was great. Thanks always Jay. The shop is really coming together. Fine tuning is half the fun.

    Btw – just another thanks for the Mission style coat rack plan. I finished a variant this weekend made from 5/4 Rustic Alder for our washroom, and the wife is jazzed with how it turned out. I plan on making a half size one for our front door nook in the evenings this week, and will likely avoid the stain/poly one step product I used on the first one as it came out a little darker than I had intended.

    Keep at it! Great content!

  9. Shock! Horror’ “Level is irrelevant”? Wash your mouth out young man!
    I wish I had your marketing skills, that wenge will fly off the shelves ;)

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