When making letters with a router, it's best to use a commercial version of a router template. Learn about everything needed to use a router template, including the letters, a frame, cutters and template guide, with help from an experienced woodworker in this free video on using wood routers.
Hi I'm Dave Trull with the Trull Gallery, a custom furniture shop in St. Petersburg, Florida and I'm going to talk to you about how to make letters with a router. With most of my router jigs and templates I tend to make them myself, I can make them fit exactly what I need but when working with letters I think it's best to go with a commercial version. This is one of the versions that's on the market today. Very simple to operate, they come pretty much complete with everything you need. The letters, a frame, the cutters and template guides, everything you need to take your router to turn your router into a sign making machine. All you're going to do is set up your letters for the sign you're going to make. Generally speaking the letter I is a good size for space between two words like I have here between the E and the G, that's just a spacer between two words. Set everything up, get your letters locked in so that there's no movement and you're ready to go ahead and start making or setting up your cut. What I'm going to do is I'm going to improvise a little and clamp my sign to my stock and my stock to the table all at once. You want to make sure everything is spaced out the way you want it, that you've got the right amount of space in the top and bottom of your letters, everything is square, nothing is going to move, everything is nice and tight. The next thing we want to do is take our router and set our depth of cut. That's done by simply setting the router on the jig and then plunging down until our cutter touches the stock. And then what we want to do is adjust our depth of cut and we'll go for about a quarter of an inch in this case. You can measure it and be as fussy as you need to. And then bring it up and we're ready to go ahead and make our first cut. Again like with most jigs, before you take your jig off you want to double check your work, make sure everything is cut clean. Then you can go ahead and remove your jig and take a look at your work. You can see in just a matter of a couple minutes you can make an entire sign, once you've got the letters setup and in place, the cutting is very quick and you get a very clean edge. In this particular case I used a round nosed bit which gives me the curved letters at the bottom, a lot of people also like to use what's called a V nose which gives you a nice crisp point at the bottom. Either of those will work fine and give you a nice clean set of letters to go with your template. So that's how to make letters with a router, I'm Dave Trull with the Trull Gallery, the fine art of furniture making.