How to Make a Rabbet Cut with a Router Table?

Rabbets are rectangular-shaped recesses along the edge of your workpiece. Making the most out of these, woodworkers are on the lookout for methods to attend to them effectively. One of the ways is to cut them with your router table.

These entities may also emerge as a design feature in your molding—for instance, holding an artwork within a frame or along cabinet door edges.  Here’s what you need to know on how to make a rabbet cut with a router table.

How to Make a Rabbet Cut with a Router Table

You will be using a router table for the rabbet cut if you are using this as a joint for mounting glass in the cabinetry door.

Straight-Cutting Router Bit

This approach makes use of the conventional straight-cutting router bit. They are very versatile and really easy to cut on a router table.

  1. For everyone’s safety, you first have to make sure you remove plugs that could interfere with the work.
  2. You may use a three-quarter-inch straight bit for the cut. Using a special router bit, you can already be successful at cutting a rabbet joint. But using a straight bit on a router table works better.
  3. Lower the bit down around three-eighths of an inch.
  4. You will have a void to work with, so fill this up with an insert for safety purposes.
  5. Then, adjust the fence to make sure the bit protrudes about three-eighths of an inch.
  6. Minimize the gap further by sliding the fence in. However, the bit should also clear the fence.
  7. It should now precisely be three-eighths of an inch high and from the fence. For consistency, you may use a feather board to provide downward pressure for accurate height. Then, adjust this board for an accurate width.
  8. Put on safety glasses and hearing protection while doing the work. It is also important to turn on a duct extraction device to protect your respiratory system.
  9. Right now, you can begin to plug back the wires. Then, you can now start to cut the rabbet on the dimensions set.


Higher Rabbet Cut

You can also make another approach with a shallow but much higher rabbet—for instance, a 16th of an inch deep, and 7/8th of an inch high.

  1. After unplugging the router for safety precaution, begin by raising the bit at seven-eighth of an inch.
  2. Adjust the fence, so it is 1/16th away from the bit.
  3. Plug your router back in. Note that this time, the feather board isn’t significant for this type of cut. This is because the workpiece is tied up against the fence. Technically speaking, we’ve to let go of the weatherboard because of the height we are working with.
  4. Wear your protective eyewear and hearing protection once more and begin cutting. Notice how clean and smooth your rabbets are according to the dimensions you have set up.

These two methods will provide you with different end-products regarding your woodwork.

Final Words

To summarize, there are two different answers to how to make a rabbet cut with a router table. The first had you placing the board flat on the table, and the second one positions it against the fence. Both make use of the standard straight bit.

Remember that when dealing with larger-sized rabbets, consider cutting the joint in various passes on your router table until you get to the final depth. It will make your router motor last longer, especially when you have hardwoods of oak and maple.

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