How do WoodRat machines compare to the various dovetail jigs available?
They offer a totally different way of working, without guidebushes, templates and expensive attachments. WoodRats produce more elegant dovetails and are capable of producing many other types of woodworking joints.
Do they work with any router?
Yes, but plunge routers are quicker and easier to set, (especially when fitted with a PlungeBar).
Is lining up pencil marks really accurate?
Yes. Craftsmen have done so for centuries. A thin pencil line is all that's needed to get accurate well fitting joints every time.
Can I use the router bits I already have?
Yes. You can cut pins to fit sockets made by any dovetail bit. You can also use any bit in the catalog for profiling, tenoning, etc.
Do I need some kind of table for it?
No. It is best mounted on a wall or high bench. Mounting on a wall takes the least amount of space and it is permanently ready for use. If your walls are sloping, (as in a loft), you could try making a vertical section just wide enough to take the 'Rat.
Otherwise it can be fixed to a strong board held in a vice or SuperJaws. As long as it is held firmly and has free space beneath it and to the sides, there shouldn't be any problem.
Is there any dust extraction?
Dust extraction can be added to your WoodRat very easily. Either connected to your permanent system, or to a vacuum cleaner. The hose fixes to the WoodRat itself, not to the router.
How long will it take me to learn?
Learning joinery with the WoodRat is no harder than learning how to make woodworking joints with any other jig or appliance. We believe the machine is simpler than most because there are not a lot of machine settings, templates or accessories to learn.
The WoodRat supports a greater variety of woodworking joints than any other jig or appliance on the market and this may make it seem more complex than it is. After determining the joint you wish to make, in most cases, it is just a matter of clamping the wood, positioning the bit in relationship to the wood then either moving the wood or the router through the cut. Once you understand the 'Rat', operations are very intuitive.
Unlike other tool manuals, the WoodRat manual is both a machine operating guide and a 'how to' joinery guide.
What are they made of?
The Channel, Guide Rail and Fences are extruded aluminum, anodized silver/grey. The Sliding Fence is glass-reinforced nylon and the Plates are made from tough synthetic laminate.
If you have a question, please email us