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Handheld Router Techniques and Tips

Unlock the extraordinary versatility of the handheld router to become a more capable, resourceful woodworker with professional woodworker and renowned author Paul Anthony.
Handheld Router Techniques and Tips is rated 4.3 out of 5 by 11.
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Rated 5 out of 5 by from Wonderful Course This really focuses on the needed details of running a router. Well laid out with tips and illustrations. Easy to follow and understand and I have a very good understanding now and confidence to us one.
Date published: 2022-08-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Good Router Review! I purchased this video right after Christmas because I wanted to see an actual demonstration of how to use this common shop tool. In the past I have purchased a number of router books to learn about router use and how to handle this shop tool, but still felt uncomfortable at using it with no hands on experience. Paul Anthony's 7 lectures was useful because I could see how he operated the router, and learn about the different types of jigs and fixtures that he uses to complete tasks.
Date published: 2020-12-31
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Very Helpful This course was very helpful. I have not used a router much so this gives me enough information and confidence to give it a try. It's definitely a worthwhile course.
Date published: 2020-12-27
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A great start for me. This course provided me with an entree to the world of routing. I have my Dad’s old router (might have to upgrade!) and have now done a few simple jobs. I would love to get some of the tools like the 6” steel ruler - but not so easy here in Australia. I have added to my bit collection based on recommendations in the course.
Date published: 2020-07-02
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Worth it I'm new to routing and I found this very handy, especially the first three lessons. Once you get past that, it has some good tips and ideas on making jigs, but most of them can be done easier on a router table. Still, worth the money.
Date published: 2018-04-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Excellent: Beyond beginners This course is chock-full of tips for using the hand-held router for a variety of applications including profiling, joinery, mortising, and shaping. These are fundamental operations in woodworking, but Mr. Anthony gives many techniques for performing these applications. These are beyond what a beginner would know. One reviewer downgraded the course because it was not, in his opinion, up to The Great Courses standards. Moreover, he stated that the instructor seemed not to be prepared. I applaud The Teaching Company for extending its library of courses to include "hands-on" courses by partnering with a company, Craftsy, that produces these woodworking courses. Moreover, this is a demonstration course--not a lecture course for which every sentence can be prepared and polished. We get to see Mr. Anthony make cuts, change bits, deal with unexpected quirks in outcome, and describe the processes he is using. This is a "show-me" course, not a "lecture-me" course. Therein lies its value. As a journeyman woodworker, I gained many ideas for this course. I highly recommend it for anyone who owns a router or plans to purchase a router.
Date published: 2017-08-03
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Handheld Router Techniques-A brief review Although there were a number of helpful tips included in this video, the overall quality was not up to the Great Courses standards, in my opinion. It appears that another company produced the video and it was marketed under the Great Courses label. Specifically, I was disappointed that there was not enough explanation of the various router bits and their uses. I also felt the moderator had not prepared his script sufficiently and rambled from time to time in the presentation.
Date published: 2016-09-16
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In this course produced by Bluprint-the popular online educational site dedicated to creative projects of all types-you discover the best applications for your handheld router with professional woodworker and renowned author Paul Anthony. Start with how to set up your router. Get crucial safety and lighting tips. Then, learn to create perfect profiled edges with no tearout. Get confident flush-trimming cabinet face frames, solid wood edgings, splines, and plugs. Quickly cut accurate dados, joint short pieces for a dead-straight edge, easily create slots for biscuit joinery, and more. Use your router to make loose-tenon joints, through-mortises in thick stock, and precise hinge mortises. Achieve perfect circles and arcs with a simple trammel. Create identically shaped parts with template routing. Plus, make a variety of jigs that boost your efficiency and accuracy. Learn how to use a handheld router like a pro.


Paul Anthony

Today's top woodworkers share their techniques, tricks and approaches for choosing, using and tuning power tools to bring out the best of your woodworking talents. Whether you're new to the craft or on your fifth router, this book is bound to help vault you forward in the world of woodworking. More power to you!

Paul Anthony has been working with wood for most of his life, and ran his own custom woodworking business for 20 years. He’s written close to 200 magazine articles for all the major woodworking magazines, as well as three books, including Smart Workshop Solutions and The Complete Illustrated Guide to Tablesaws. During his career, Paul has taught classes at woodworking shows across the country and at a variety of schools. He is also the senior editor at Woodcraft Magazine.

By This Expert

Handheld Router Techniques and Tips
Handheld Router Techniques and Tips


Introduction to Handheld Routers & Bits

01: Introduction to Handheld Routers & Bits

Meet your instructor Paul Anthony: woodworker, author, and Woodcraft Magazine senior editor. Learn about the different handheld routers available and see the variety of ways this workhorse tool can help you in all of your woodworking projects. Paul offers buying advice for bits, sharing his picks for what should be in every woodworker's toolbox.

8 min
Setup, Safety & Lighting Tips

02: Setup, Safety & Lighting Tips

Learn how to secure your bits into a variety of routers and preview the options available for safety equipment to protect your eyes, lungs, and ears from the use of woodworking machinery. Finally, shed some light onto your work as Paul discusses the importance of proper lighting. He'll give you tips for making a simple helper post, perfect for holding lights, a dust collection system, and more!

17 min
Profiling Edges

03: Profiling Edges

Tackle profiling edges as you learn how to create clean edges with cuts free of tearout. Discover the proper cut order to minimize tearout if you're profiling all edges, and learn how adding a helper piece can help you eliminate tearout on end pieces. Add climb cutting to your technique tool belt as Paul shows you how to make these cuts in the opposite direction. Then, discover how to use an offset baseplate and other guides when profiling round or very narrow pieces.

27 min
Flush Trimming

04: Flush Trimming

Use a router to get trim and edges that perfectly line up with your body pieces. Learn how to adjust your router and techniques for flush cutting a face frame on a cabinet or using an outrigger jig to flush cut narrow edging on a frameless cabinet. Learn how to construct and use a riser jig if you need to flush cut a wide edging or you want to trim plugs and splines to lie flush to your joints.

39 min
Router Joinery

05: Router Joinery

Make dado cuts without a table saw-perfect for joinery and quick assembly of carcasses or other projects! Learn three different ways to measure and mark your cuts: with a simple straight edge, spacers, or a dedicated t-fence. Then, learn how make your dado to the exact width you need. Turn your router into a jointer as Paul shows you a nifty trick for squaring small pieces of lumber. Make mitered joints extremely strong by reinforcing them with splines; the groves custom cut with your router! Finally, you don't have to invest in a biscuit cutter; let your router do the work for you. Paul will show you how!

40 min

06: Mortising

Delve into creating mortises with your router. Learn how you can attach an edge guide for perfect mortises every time. Or, create an easy mortising jig, perfect when you want to make a mortise and tenon joint with a loose tenon. Discover how to make through-mortises in thick stock with a custom template, and cut precise hinge mortises. Finally, hanging pictures and light cabinets will be a cinch if they're fitted with keyhole slots, easily made with a router and a dedicated custom jig.

47 min

07: Shaping

Finish your immersion into router techniques with a final lesson on shaping. Learn how to cut out perfect circles and arcs using a commercial or homemade jig. Then, make table legs that are all exactly the same as you use a template to flush cut your rough-shaped pieces into exact copies of one another. Finally, see how to template rout thick stock, for sturdier legs or other projects.

28 min