Sunday, 15 February 2015

Alpair 12P MLTLs - Part 3

Day 3 - 4 hours

Today was all about learning how to use the router guide and some large circle cutters. It was the first use for the router too, a £12 special from either Aldi or Lidl, I don't remember which. It's not worth thinking about how they managed to manufacture and ship it half way across the world for 12 quid, even when reduced to half price.

So, nearly 8 degrees C today.

First job was to finish off the remaining three braces including a light sand. I might just rout an arris around the internal edges later.

Rather than bodge some rather rough holes for the various bits and pieces that are to be mounted in the cabinets I wanted to make a proper job so used the template guide that came with the router. This of course means I need some hole templates, so I bought an adjustable hole cutter from Toolstation for 8 quid.

Decent ones look to be four times the price so I was a little wary about its quality. As I haven't used any others I can't compare, but it's a bit fiddly to set up (so might others) and though it reckons to cut up to a depth of 30mm I struggled to do much more than 3mm in mdf. The cutting tips are pointed, and once most of the point has entered the mdf the mdf started to burn.

Maybe more coarse materials would cut better but I simply flipped the mdf over and cut from the other side. The battery drill struggled a little to drive the cutters but it's a lot easier to hold. When I cut the larger holes for the 12Ps I think I'll probably need a mains drill.

Now to check to see if the template is the right size. I couldn't find much scrap wood, apart from a rather narrow piece, but it worked just fine. The template guide is shown on the underside of the router below.

The 6mm router cutter...

First pass of the router, about 6mm deep

After a couple of passes, 12mm ish

Three passes and done. There's a slight lip at the bottom around about a third of the circumference. I tried cleaning it up but the router didn't touch it so I must have managed to get a little bit of twist in the router. But it's not an issue because it will be covered. If I was going to use it anyway.

Pretty much perfect size, about 1mm larger than the speaker binding tray.

I cut two more templates, one for the ports and one for the "supertweeter" L pad attenuators. The port template produces a snug fit, maybe just too snug, another half millimeter clearance would be better I think. On the other hand the L pad attenuator was completely wrong and I had to cut another. Just shows how easy it is to get it wrong, and how important it is to check before assuming it's correct and ruining a precious piece of birch ply!

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