Ramp Up Your Router-Table Dust Collection
A standard router-table dust collection setup works well when the cut is along the inner edge because wood chips are easily sucked into the fence opening. However, when routing a dado, a flute, or other trapped cut, the fence opening is blocked, preventing any dust from being collected. One solution is to connect a hose underneath the table and enclose the entire base.
However, I had a simpler idea. I modified an extra router-table insert by cutting a large V-shaped opening between the bit and the fence. I also installed a ramp inside the dust-collection opening in my fence, which has helped with dust pickup for all routing. When you’re milling a dado or groove, say, 1/2 in. from the fence, wood chips fall down through the table and are pulled back up and through the V-shaped opening in the insert.
This approach doesn’t work if the trapped cut is several inches from the fence because the insert would then be fully underneath the workpiece. But dadoes and grooves are often close to the edge of a board, where this solution works like a charm. For regular edge routing, replace the V-opening insert with a standard insert.