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24.06.2014
I’m working on an upcoming article for Popular Woodworking Magazine that includes router-bit storage.
But before we get into how bits are stored, I’d like to find out how many router bits our blog readers actually own. What I find even more amazing are the dream-like storage solutions designed by my fellow woodworkers. Glen Huey is a former managing editor of Popular Woodworking Magazine, a period furniture maker and author of numerous woodworking books, videos and magazine articles.
I started building a portable router table a while back and had planned on including the two drawers (or, possibly 4 drawers ?? for storing my router bits.
I currently have at least 25 router bits (including a set for making tambour doors that don’t require wires, cords, or any backing).
In 1999 when I retired from full time work I made a router table very similar to Bill Hylton’s Floor Standing version. A Q&A like this belongs in Popular Mechanics, Woodsmith Shopnotes, or the new addition to the PW family, American Woodworker, not in a magazine for more advanced woodworker. Related to one of the comments: any reference to Norm Abrams should be excised from Popular Woodworking. Eons ago I built my own router table which included 3 drawers on one side and cupboard space below.
Christopher Schwarz has helped many of us solve some pretty frustrating problems over the years. If you are using traditional screws, mark the legs where they meet up with the panel at the top and bottom (where the panel is covered in trim.


Attach the bottom supports in the same manner as the panel, carefully locating as shown in diagram. Install drawers into bed as shown in diagram, using the white euro style drawer slides that cup the bottom corners of the drawers. Depending on your skill level and how confident you are, I would attach drawer slides now rather than later. Years ago I found the holders shown in the opening photo – a quick Internet search tells me these are not available anymore, so I’m glad I inherited my Dad’s holders when we cleared his shop.
Some folks store their bits in compartments that are way upscale – their router bits appear as mini works of art, showcased on elevated platforms for all the world to see. Take a minute and cut some leftover 4x4s or 2x4s 4″ long and use them as blocking to hold the boxes up as you screw to the headboard and footboard. If using pocket holes, drill holes on the inside, spacing about every 11″ (or as recommended by pocket hole maker). I also have a select few bits stored in those fancy anti-theft plastic boxes that come with purchase. My router table is a 4 ft formica laminate from the big box store, which is flat and slippery. These have been the perfect storage solution – compact, easy to access and no dinging of the carbide surfaces. In this hole, use a drill bit the size of the screw head to drill a second hole all the way through the 4x4s. When wood filler is completely dry, sand the project in the direction of the wood grain with 120 grit sandpaper.


Make sure you measure before building drawer boxes – your widths may need to be adjusted.
And yes, I have router bits stored in the low-budget, plastic pouches straight from the store. Popular Woodworking Magazine is a valuable resource for woodworkers of all abilities from the seasoned professional to the beginning woodworker who just purchased his first tool. Or do you walk into a woodworking store and as the staff yells your name, the cashier guides you to the wall-size, overly stuffed router bit case as your body begins to quiver?
I also – and I’m weary to let this be known – have a box full of older bits sitting in a closet clanking together as their carbide edges dull (head down in shame). And Norm Abram has introduced woodworking to so many people throughout his career that we should all be thankful.
Since I like to make boxes, I purchased a block of foam from Rockler and fitted a box around it. It is always recommended to apply a test coat on a hidden area or scrap piece to ensure color evenness and adhesion.



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