Circle Cutting with the Router

There are a number of different methods for cutting a circle, and depending on what diameter is required will often dictate which method is used.

For very large diameters (and we are talking in the order of 1m or larger) the router is a very useful tool.

Get Woodworking in Williamstown (2/ 239 Kororoit Creek Rd Williamstown VIC 3016, ph (03) 9399 1963) have come up with the Rout-A-circle ($27.50), which attaches to the fence of your router to make cutting very large circles easy.

The Rout-A-circle has instructions for attaching to the fence of Hitashi, Makita and Triton routers.  Not being in a position to try it on the other two, I did give the Triton a go, and it was a breeze to attach, and cut the circle.

The largest circle it can manage is approximately 2600mm diameter, which isn’t too shabby. Given how easily it fitted to the Triton fence, you would almost swear it was made with the Triton in mind.

Original Fence

Original Fence

The original Triton fence (which attaches via the quick-release coach bolts) has a circle cutting capability, although it is very limited to about 300mm diameter. Pictured here is the triple-fluted Carb-i-tool spiral router bit which is excellent for this sort of operation.

Preparing for Upgrade

Preparing for Upgrade

One of the times it is very handy having more than one router – also means I have more than one fence, so I am able to upgrade one with the Rout-A-circle, and leave the other in its original configuration.  Not that changing back and forth takes more than a few seconds.

The first step is to remove the non-required componentry. The bolt, washer and butterfly nut are reused to hold the Rout-A-circle in place.

Rout-A-Circle attached

Rout-A-Circle attached

The Rout-A-circle attaches very easily using that existing bolt and nut, and it fits neatly in the slot in the bottom of the router plate.

Upgraded Fence

Upgraded Fence

Maximum Circle Radius

Maximum Circle Radius

Here you can get a better idea of just how large a circle this jig allows. You can’t see it particularly well in this photo, but at the other end of the jig, there is a raised portion.  It is this end that is used when attaching to the Makita or Hitashi routers.

Along the length of the jig, there are holes to take the supplied screw, which is screwed into the workpiece at the radius required.  The Triton fence then allows this radius to be fine tuned if a hole isn’t perfectly located for the job.

First Pass Cut

First Pass Cut

This is the first pass – I took a number of passes mainly because I didn’t bother trimming away the excess material with a jigsaw or similar before starting the routing.  If I was working in a more substantial material, trimming away the excess is definitely recommended.

Circle Cut Completed

Circle Cut Completed

This final shot shows the piece cut away.  The block of wood underneath is there to allow the router bit to fully penetrate without cutting into the table.  Given the table in this case is cast iron, that is rather advisable!

3 Responses

  1. Thanks for all the Triton talk. I love my fat 2400w router although am still learning how to use it. Your reviews are massively helpful.

    — Pete in Indianapolis

    • Hi Pete,

      It will be very interesting to see how things develop in the near future wrt Triton. I am quietly optimistic that we haven’t seen the end of the brand, and that may actually lead to more content here. Irrespective, if there is anything you (or anyone) want to see, just let me know. As much as my workshop is slowly undergoing a change in colour-scheme, the Triton tools are just there in storage, and I’m happy to set one up to cover a particular feature or activity.

  2. Stu: Where can I find a Rout-A-Circle? I looks like it should do what I need to do and shouldn’t break the bank.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: