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What is a router jig?

 
  Routers can be used with jigs for complex and / or repetitive cuts  

A jig is usually the name given to a specialist template which holds the workpiece and guides a tool. They are used for accurately completing complex routing applications, but other tools also have jigs they can be used with. They are commonly used by professional woodworkers and tradesmen who have to make accurate and repetitive cuts regularly. Jigs can save you a lot of time and ensure great accuracy every time, reducing the chance of making mistakes and wasting material.

 
         
  Using a router jigs - there are many different types of jig to use with a router. They are templates  

Some jigs for routers require complex marking out of the workpiece, set up of the template, and often the purchase of specific cutters and guide bushes, and may be difficult for beginners to use. You should always follow the manufacturer's instructions and recommendations for the type and size of cutter, the size of guide bush, and the types and thicknesses of material which can be used with specific jigs. Most jigs can only be used with routers that have a plunge feature.

 
         
 

What are the different types of router jig? 

 
  Router jigs. Routing with a jig for easy cutting  

There are a huge number of different jigs. Each one is usually designed for completing very specific applications. Some are flat templates, like stencils, while others are more complex, 3-D-design, templates. Below is a brief description of some of the jigs you'll find available to purchase, others may also be available. 

 
         
  Aperture and Radius Jigs  These jigs are used to assist with routing worktops to fit around curved edges and cabinets, and to fit a wide range of sinks and hobs by guiding the router for cutting recesses, apertures, and radii. T  

Aperture and Radius Jigs

These jigs are used to assist with routing worktops to fit around curved edges and cabinets, and to fit a wide range of sinks and hobs by guiding the router for cutting recesses, apertures, and radii. They work as guides for internal and external radii, as well as having straight and 90-degree angle template slots.

 
         
 

For routing Belfast / Butler / farmhouse sinks. Belfast sink jig

 

Draining groove jigs are specifically designed to guide a router for cutting grooves in solid timber for Belfast style sinks.

 

Belfast Sink Jigs and draining groove jigs

A Belfast sink can also be referred to as a butler sink, or a farmhouse sink. They are usually large, single bowl, rectangular ceramic sinks, although variations on this design are also available. A Belfast sink jig can be used to help with the fitting of these sinks by providing a template for straight lines and corners, as well as allowing a drip channel groove to be routed underneath the worktop. 

belfast sink jigs

 

Draining groove jigs are specifically designed to guide a router for cutting drainage grooves in solid timber. They usually installed next to Belfast style sinks to work as a built-in draining board. 

 
         
  Jigs for fitting doors and door hardware. Use a router to help with fitting doors  

Jigs for fitting doors

Routers can be incredibly useful when fitting doors and their accessories, or hardware. There are various different types and styles of jig available to assist with the different tasks involved in fitting doors.  

 
         
  Jigs for routing hinges  

Hinge jigs

There are a few different types of door hinge jig, usually with two or more templates for standard sized hinges which are typically used on doors. Some can also be used to recess matching mortises into the frame for replacing an entire door set. They are often used alongside door clamps, door holder stands, or door lifters, to make fitting doors much quicker and easier.

 
         
  A jig to rout out a hole for a letterbox to be fitted  

Letterbox jigs

Some letterbox jigs are set to a few standard sizes, others are adjustable and can be set to the required sizes. They assist with cutting out the openings in which letterboxes need to be fitted into. 

 
         
  A jig for cutting mortises for locks into doors  

Lock jigs

Various lock jigs are also available to guide a router with cutting out recesses for locks and strike plates to be fitted. Adjustable lock jigs are ideal when working with locks in non-standard sizes. Other lock jigs have standard sized interchangeable templates. These are ideal when needed for use with large numbers of doors using different standard sized locks. 

 
         
  Router jig for cutting out dovetail joint, comb joints and dowel joints  

Dovetail Jigs

These jigs assist with cutting out dovetail joints. They are available in different lengths, usually either 300mm or 600mm wide, and they often include a suitable guide bush and dovetail cutter. Many of these jigs can be converted with additional accessories to assist with cutting out of other joints as well, such as comb joints, half blind dovetail joints, and receiver holes for dowels. 

 
         
  A jig for cutting circles and ellipses is called an ellipse jig  

Ellipse Jigsbuy ellipse jigs

Ellipse jigs are designed to guide the router in a number of circular, elliptical, and arching shapes. A mini and a large version are available, depending what sizes you typically work in. Common applications include cutting things like table tops and doors with one or more rounded edges. 

 
         
  Hot rod jig is used for worktop hot rods which are worktop protectors  

Hot Rod Jigs

Worktop hot rods, or protectors, are stainless steel rods which can be inserted into grooves on a worktop to act as a heat protector. Hot pots and pans will be supported on the rods which will lift them slightly above the work surface. Hot rod jigs guide your router for cutting out the grooves needed to fit standard sizes of hot rods.

 
         
  Stainless steel hotrods for worktops from wonkee donkee trend  

Stainless steel hot rods

For use with the Trend Hot Rod Jig , Trend now produce four different sizes of brushed stainless steel hot rods with a 12mm diameter for use in timber worktops to protect surfaces from the things like hot pots and pans. They are available to buy in singles in lengths of 100mm , 200mm , 300mm , and 400mm .

 
         
  Mortise and tenon jig for making joints  

Mortise and Tenon Jigs

This jig can be used to help rout perfectly fitting mortise and tenon joints, as well as dowel joints. They can produce round and square end tenons, as well as angled mortises and tenons. They can be set to different sizes and come in a metric or imperial version.

 
         
  Routing jigs for scribing moulding and skirting boards  

Scribe-Master Pro

This specialist jig is an excellent way to scribe moldings, used for skirting, architrave, or dado rails, using a router. They have moveable plates which are sandwiched close together, but can be moved to the exact cast of almost any shape of moulding. This cast then becomes the template for the router as it scribes the shape of the moulding. This is usually considered to be a jig for professionals to use as it's difficult to set correctly, but it offers exceptional performance.

 
         
  This template jig is a well proven means of routing out stair housings quickly and accurately.  

Stair Jigs

Stair jigs are typically used by workmen who build and install staircases. They are a template for accurately and quickly routing out stair housings with adjustable stair angle pitch for private and common stairs. They're available in versions for closed or open riser stairs. 

 
         
  Varijig is a framing jig for a router cutter. It's an adjustable frame jig  

Varijigs

A varijig is an adjustable frame jig for routing square and rectangle frames of varying sizes. Allows for the router to cut things such as recesses and slots. This jig can also be used for creating panel doors. buy varijigs for oruters

 
         
  Kitchen worktop jigs for various shapes and angles of worktop  

Worktop Jigs

A worktop jig is sometimes referred to as a kitchen worktop jig, are used for routing out the edges and recesses required for making and fitting worktops, usually kitchen worktops. Different types and sizes are available, depending on the types of worktop you regularly work with.

 
         
  Some other, less complex types of template and guide accessories available for routers  

Other router templates

Some other, usually less complex, types of template and guide accessories are also available for routers, they include: 

 
         
  Panel door templates for routers  

Panel door templates

You can create traditional rail and panel doors with a router and a panel door template . These templates are clear plastic that 6mm thick.  These are two-part templates for both the concave and convex cut, for the frame and panel. some models of router will need the Unibase to work with this template.

 
         
  cabinet door hinge template from wonkee donkee trend  

Cabinet door hinge template

This hinge template  is for routing 26mm and 35mm diameter blind holes for circular hinge holes for hinges used on cabinet doors. For use with a plunge router with a 12.7mm (1/2”) diameter router cutter and 30mm guide bush. It has and adjustable and removable alloy end stop for altering the recess position from the top and the bottom of the door (normal position is 100mm). It has 3mm and 5mm offset location holes to precisely position the recesses relative to the edge of the door and the pin holes are reversible for right-hand or left-hand doors.

 
         
  Router combination base makes a router even more versatile  

Combination router bases

The combination router base is a multi-functional base which increases the versatility of a router. It has seven basic functions, including, a router compass, an offset base plate, an anti-tilt support, and can enhance the routers performance with the varijig. It should increase your accuracy, improve the quality of finish, and reduce the possibility of error. 

 
         
  Offset bases for routers for different applications  

Offset router bases

The two basic offset router bases available are the offset trench base, which allows for wider grooves to be routed by just rotating the hexagon shaped base, and the teardrop shaped offset base, which allows for better control when edge mounting the router. 

 
         
  This template is typically used by electricians, plumbers, and builders to cut through chipboard floors quickly for accessing cables and pipes.  

Routaboutsshop for roudabouts

This template is typically used by electricians, plumbers, and builders to cut through chipboard floors quickly for accessing cables and pipes. There is a mini version which can cut opening 108mm in diameter in chipboard up to 18mm thick, and a standard version for cutting 250mm diameter opening in chipboard up to 22mm thick. There is no waste as the circle cut out is preserved to be reinserted when finishing the floor. 

 
         
  Router compass for routing circles and arcs  

Router compasses

A basic router compass is usually able to guide the router for cutting circles or arcs between 100mm and 610mm radius by fitting to the base of a router.  

 
         
  Router templates are availabe in various shapes ans sizes for many of your routing jobs  

Router stencil templates

There are a huge number of more simple, and yet still often quite specific, templates are available for various tasks. These include templates for lettering and numbers, frames and plaques, panel doors, cable tidies, corners, various shapes of inlay design, and for repairing flush panels.

 
         
  Router t-square for routing straight and square mortises  

Router T-squares

A router t-square is usually about 1000mm long with two straight edges which can be used to guide a router. It has a butt set at a perfect right angle for accurately cutting square edges. It's usually used to guide the router while cutting grooves and trenches.

 
         
  A router base used to guide a router along the centre of a piece of timber, to rout out mortises, without the need to measure and mark the mortise width.  

Self centre mortise base

A router base used to guide a router along the centre of a piece of timber, to rout out mortises, without the need to measure and mark the mortise width. The self centre mortise jig has roller guides at the bottom to run along both edge of the timber with the cutter accurately centred.

 
         
  This template is used for creating the holes for shelf supports used typically found in cupboards and cabinets which allow the shelves to be adjusted. It is set up for the European standard for shelving systems of the holes being set at 32mm apart and ensures they are parallel to the edge of the board. It can be set to position the holes from 10mm to 64mm from the edge of the board.  

Shelf support template

This template is used for creating the holes for shelf supports, typically found in cupboards and cabinets, which allow a shelve's height to be adjusted. It is set up for the European standard for shelving systems. The holes are set at 32mm apart and will run parallel to the edge of the material. It can be set to position the holes from 10mm to 64mm from the edge of the board. It should be used with a 9.5mm guide bush, which is usually supplied with the template, and a 5mm TCT router dowel drill. It can also be used with a power drill with the appropriate accessories. 

 
         
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