How to Round Wood With a Router

If you would like to take your special woodworking project from good to great, consider giving it some rounded edges. Rounding the edges of your design could give it a sleeker, more professional appearance. You can create any size of rounded edge you need, by using a wood router with the right router bit. Round the edges just enough to take off sharp corners or give it a more dramatic look. Working with a router can give you a variety of shapes and designs to produce a great finish to your project.

Things You'll Need

  • Portable router table
  • Router
  • Screwdriver
  • 1/4" Round over bit
  • Open end wrench
  • Safety glasses
  • Wood stock
  • Fine grit sand paper

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Set up your portable router table in an area that is unobstructed and will give you plenty of room to work. Clear the area of any debris that might get in your way or cause a safety hazard.

Secure the router to the underside of the router table by turning the router upside down and attaching it through the pre-drilled holes in the table with the attachment screws that came with your router. Use only flat head screws so they do not interfere with the wood as it is being cut.

Set up the router with a 1/4 inch router bit and lock the bit in place by lowering the bit to the bottom of the collet nut and then raising it up about 1/8 inch from the bottom. Turn the collet nut until the bit is secure, and then lock it in place by using an open end wrench to tighten the collet.

Raise the router bit so that the top of the bit is 1/4 inch above the surface of the router table. Set the stop fence so that it is 1/4 inch from the router bit. Put your safety glasses on, and then turn on the router.

Place the edge of your wood stock that you want to round over against the stop fence about 3 or 4 inches to the left of the router bit. Moving left to right, smoothly guide your wood stock along the stop fence and make one pass over the router bit.

Sand any rough edges of your wood stock with a piece of fine grit sand paper. Turn off the router and remove your safety glasses.

Tips & Warnings

  • You can substitute any size router bit, depending on the type of shape you want to give your wood.
  • Always use safety glasses when working with woodcutting equipment.
  • Whenever using a router table, always move your stock from left to right across the router.
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