What would be the best tool for this project?

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Old 09-20-19, 06:40 PM
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What would be the best tool for this project?

So here's what I am planning to do, crazy or not. I have a cast iron manhole cover that I want to recess down into a square piece of wood. The cover itself will be resting on another piece of wood below it, so the circular piece of wood is acting more as a frame around the cover rather than any type of support. To do so, I am needing to cut out as circle 25" in diameter and at least 1 & 1/2" deep. I know I can cut out a circle with a router and a circle cutting jig, but can I get a cut that deep with a standard router.
 
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Old 09-20-19, 06:42 PM
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A solid block of wood....... 1-1/2" deep ?
 
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Old 09-20-19, 06:48 PM
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Actually, I am going to make the square "piece" of wood by joining together pieces of treated 2" X 12" boards, then once assembled, cut the circle out of that.
 
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Old 09-20-19, 06:58 PM
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You can get router bits fairly long. You would need a 2" - 21/2" bit.
Are you going to make up a cutting jig or will yours be large enough ?
You could use a +/- 20" round disc fastened in the center and run the router around that.
The exact diameter or the disc is dependent on your router.
 
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Old 09-20-19, 07:13 PM
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I was planning on making my own circle cutting jig, but admit I hadn't thought of affixing a circular template to cut around. So you are saying I should be able to cut the needed 1 &1/2 inches depth with the proper router bit, yes?
 
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Old 09-21-19, 03:19 AM
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Yes, you can cut that deep with router bits, if you have bits long enough. You won't be able to make a cut that deep in one pass so you'll have to make multiple passes, each one deeper than the previous.

In your situation I would make my circle jig to guide the outside. It will require a bigger piece of wood but guiding on the outside will make it more idiot proof. If the bit bites and the router gets away from you it can only run wild to the inside, the piece you are throwing away.

A circle jig in the center will use a smaller piece of wood but you have to be very careful to always keep the router pressed hard against it. If the router gets away from you you'll damage your floor where it's visible.
 
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Old 09-22-19, 06:42 AM
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Why don't you cut the 25" hole in the first layer of wood with a jigsaw, then attach it to the second piece?
 
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Old 09-23-19, 05:44 PM
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Mad scientist,

I thought about that, but wondered if I would be good enough to cut a reasonably precise 25" diameter circle 1 and 1/2" deep. You think?
 
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Old 09-23-19, 05:57 PM
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A router and stick jig will cut a "perfect" circle.
 
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