A Parallel Sliding Router Fence

I got to organizing my heaping pile of barstock a while back and I discovered I had many more bits of allthread and odd shapes than I thought I did! What I needed was a mini-shelf system that could fit within my larger shelving that would organize the bits and bobs in some way. What I came up with was a quick and dirty contraption that's held together with glued tonge-and-groove joints; i.e. no nails or screws to make it work. The downside of this design is that I had to figure out a way of routing many parallel slots. A 'traditional' router fence is some old board that's clamped on one end, then fine tuned by whacking the other end with a hammer. This is fine for ordinary routing requirements but it's utterly useless for what I had in mind. I decided to find a way to make my router's fence move in more or less parallel steps. This kludge was done from things I found in various bins: two linear bearings, some angle aluminum, some brass rod and a four pieces of 2" square aluminum bar.

Photo #1: Overall shot of my folding router table (looking unusually clean!) with the parallel fence mods in place.
Photo #2: Closeup of starboard side. Fence is relieved 1/8" on the bottom on either side so that 1/8" angle aluminum pieces can be fastened via bolts and tightened with wing nuts. Other face of angle is fastened to a block of aluminum that contains a pressed in linear bearing. With 20-20 hindsight I'd have done better with two linear bearings per side to minimize racking.
Photo #3: Port side reveals a bit more detail. The underside of the nearer angle brackets have left-right slots milled in them, so that the rod support blocks can be wiggled until they're parallel before locking them in place. Bearing support brackets have similar slots, but running up/down so that fence height off the table can be adjusted. The one clamp does an adequate job of locking the fence in place but I still feel safer with two...
Photo #4: The object of the exercise: to make the parallel slots in the sides of my mini-shelf system.

Return to Jigs, Fixtures and Shop Hacks