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How to Cut Circles and Curves With a Router (page 1 of 2)

Learn how to use a router and a special jig to cut perfect circles and ovals.

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jigs used with router to cut circles or angles

Step 1: Cut the Plywood Into a Circle

Take off the sub-base of the router to determine how big the circular end of the jig should be. Cut the end of the piece of 36" x 14" x 1/4" plywood into a circle the same size as the router's sub-base.

cut plywood into a circle

Step 2: Drill Holes in the Circle

Drill holes into the circular end of the jig to correspond with the holes in the sub-base. Use the sub-base to guide the drilling.

Step 3: Screw the Jig Into the Router Base

Screw the circular end of the jig into the router's base, aligning the circles on the sub-base with the holes drilled in the jig.

screw circular end of jig into router

Step 4: Drill Pivot Holes in the Arm of the Jig

Drill small pivot holes into the arm of the jig, spaced 1 inch apart.

drill small pivot holes into arm of jig

Step 5: Cut a Circle

To use the jig to cut a circle, draw a line on the work piece from its center to the end of the desired radius of the circle. Center the router atop the end point of the radius. Drive a nail through the appropriate hole in the jig that corresponds with the center of the work piece (image 1). Set the router to the proper depth, and make a slow pass through the work piece, using the nail as a pivot point (image 2). Make deep cuts in several passes, lowering the router bit slightly after each pass.

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