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Did you already know that feeler fauges should not simply for machinists or for checking and adjusting our metal and forged iron woodworking tools? How do I do know this? Because I not too long ago came upon {that a} set of feeler gauges may be very useful in organising the precise quantity of play (tolerance) that was wanted for a router jig that I constructed. 

This week I constructed a jig to assist me in routing the 2 grooves on the head of my signature slicing boards. My slicing boards have two grooves that intersect with the large gap and allow the hanging rope to nest in them. 

To assist me rout the grove I constructed a template that guides my Ryobi router. The plan was to mount two hardwood battens over the plywood panel to flank and direct the router in its move. 

I affixed the primary batten with two pan head screws and washers.

After screwing the primary batten onto the plywood plate I tucked the router base in opposition to it and launched the second batten to the opposite aspect of the plastic plate. I moved the router and sensed the drag or the friction that the 2 battens created. It felt extreme so I made a decision to offer a small hole in between the router’s plate and the battens. 

I positioned a shim in between the plastic base and the second batten, clamped that batten down, eliminated the shim, and tried to slip the router. I repeated this a number of occasions with two different shims till I discovered the proper thickness. I then secured the second batten with screws and eliminated the shim.

Many woodworkers use paper or cash payments when in want of this type of shimming. However, I needed to seek out the perfect quantity of tolerance so I made a decision to make use of a feeler gauge.

These feeler gauges set (a pair for $10 at Amazon) may be separated into particular person blade leaves.

After ensuring that the router base is pushed tight in opposition to the primary batten I positioned a metal shim in opposition to the bottom’s different aspect and pushed the second batten in the direction of it. I held the batten down and eliminated the shim. Then I attempted to slip the router and assessed the play. I repeated this course of a number of extra occasions with shims of various thicknesses till I discovered the proper one. I introduced the shim again, tucked the batten tight in opposition to the router, clamped the batten, and screwed it in. After eradicating the shim I examined the setup – The router slid completely and with simply the correct amount of play. 

 A couple of extra factors to recollect

Wood is a working medium that swells or shrinks in correlation to the quantity of humidity within the air. So you must incorporate the shims in an knowledgeable means when organising tolerances for transferring components or for components that may swell or shrink.  It would possibly take trial and error (components that have been arrange within the winter would possibly get jam or caught in the summertime), so attempt to discover the candy spot for the correct amount of play. Another good thought is to construct into the design some setup flexibility. For occasion, drill wider by means of holes for your {hardware} to permit for adjustment in a while. In my case, I used plywood and ash battens. I don’t anticipate any jamming this summer time but when it occurs I’ll loosen one of many battens, tuck a skinny shim in between the router base and the free batten and retighten the batten’s screws. It is value noting that it is best to use screws which have a pan head fairly than flat head screws that are designed to heart themselves into the outlet. 

One final level. The holes in these cheap feeder gauges just like the one I received are stamped and the edges would possibly stand up and add unintended thickness to this space. So both keep away from utilizing the shim’s gap space or sand it flat earlier than you tuck it in between your components. 

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